I. "THEN DELIVERED HE THEREFORE UNTO THEM TO BE CRUCIFIED."
A. It is plainly declared that Pilate delivered Jesus to the Jews to be crucified.
1. In the later part of the verse it declares, "And they took Jesus and led Him away." Notice, He was not driven or dragged away. They led Him away, and thus the prophecy was fulfilled which declared, "He was brought as a sheep to the slaughter."
a. The "they" of the second part is the Jews of the first part.
b. In the prophecy of Zechariah when Jesus is asked by the Jews, "What is the meaning of these wounds in Your hands?" His response is, "These are the wounds that I received in the house of My friends."
2. On the day of Pentecost when Peter was speaking to the Jews that had gathered to observe the supernatural phenomena that had accompanied the outpouring of the Spirit, Peter addressed them as men of Israel, and he declared concerning the crucifixion of Jesus, "You have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain."
3. In Acts, chapter 3, he declared to them, "God has glorified His Son Jesus: whom you delivered up and denied Him in the presence of Pilate when he was determined to let Him go. And you killed the Prince of life.
4. When Peter was addressing the counsel in Acts 4
, he said, "By the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom You crucified,"
5. In Acts 5:30
, Peter answered the Jews, "The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom you slew and hanged on a tree.
6. In Acts 7:52
, Stephen is very plain and straight. "Which of the prophets have not your fathers persecuted? and they have slain them which showed before of the coming of the Just One; of whom you have been now the betrayers and murderers."
B. There can be no doubt but that the Bible record places the blame for the crucifixion squarely on the Jews of that day.
1. Since then the Jews have been seeking to place the blame on Rome, and the Roman church has been seeking to place the blame on the Jews.
2. Very unfortunately the church has been guilty many times in history of persecuting the Jews for their crucifixion of Jesus.
a. There is to the present day much anti-semitism in the church, some whom even seek to identify with the evangelical movement.
b. I do not see how any true Christian can be anti-semitic, for our Lord Himself was a Jew by nationality.
C. The argument of who crucified Jesus is actually a mute point, for in reality it was the Father who planed His crucifixion.
1. Peter said, "According to the determinate counsel and foreknowledge you have with your wicked hands have crucified and slain."
2. Rev. 13:8
speaks of the Lamb, slain from the foundation of the earth.
3. Jesus in asking for the cup to be passed by Him, said, "Nevertheless, not My will, but Thy will be done."
D. The death of Jesus was necessitated by my sin.
1. Christ died for our sins, according to the scriptures.
2. In Romans 4:25
, Paul speaks of Him be delivered for our offenses.
3. In Gal. 1:4
: "Who gave Himself for our sins."
E. The actual mechanics of the crucifixion was carried out by the Roman soldiers, who were acting under the direction of the Jews who had been given that authority by Pilate the Roman governor.
II. "AND HE BEARING HIS CROSS WENT FORTH INTO A PLACE CALLED THE PLACE OF A SKULL, WHICH IS CALLED IN THE HEBREW, GOLGOTHA:"
A. We are told in the other gospels that they compelled a man by the name of Simon to bear the cross of Jesus.
1. Just how far Jesus had gone before this help was given, we have no idea of knowing.
2. The Catholics have a tradition of Jesus falling under the burden of the cross, and they even have a spot on the via Delorosa in Jerusalem, one of the seven stations of the cross where He supposedly fell. No mention in the gospels of this happening.
B. The place of the skull, what a fitting place for crucifixion.
1. The skull has been a symbol of death.
2. Jesus is to be put to death at a spot already known as the place of the skull.
3. Various attempts have been made to pinpoint the very spot.
a. We know that it was known as the place of the skull.
b. We know that it was outside of the gates of the city.
c. We know that it was near a garden.
4. In Jerusalem the place known as the Garden Tomb seems to fulfill all of these requirements. The side of the hill has the appearance of a skull. There was a garden nearby, and it is outside of the walls of the old city.
5. It also happens to be at the top of the mountain known as Mt. Moriah, upon which Abraham was once called of God to offer his son Issac as a sacrifice.
C. Pilate delivered Jesus unto them, and they led Him away, and He bore His cross.
III. "WHERE THEY CRUCIFIED HIM, AND TWO OTHERS WITH HIM."
A. How we see prophecy being fulfilled.
1. "They pierced My hands and My feet." This of course was done as He was nailed to the cross.
2. "He was numbered with the transgressors." Isa. 53:12
3. "He would be with the wicked in His death."
B. What do we know about these other two?
1. That at the beginning of the crucifixion, they were both taunting Jesus.
2. That as they were hanging by His side, one became repentant and asked to be remembered by Jesus when He came into His kingdom.
3. That one of them is with Jesus in glory.
4. That they by their own admission deserved to die.
5. Matthew and Mark both call them thieves. Luke calls them malefactors.
6. We know that they were on either side of Jesus and He was in the middle.
7. We know that God designed that they be there. Why?