By Eric D. Huntsman
“There would be no Christmas if there had not been Easter. The babe Jesus of Bethlehem would be but another baby without the redeeming Christ of Gethsemane and Calvary, and the triumphant fact of the Resurrection.” (Gordon B. Hinckley, Ensign, Dec. 2000, 2)
I am convinced that if it were not for commercial and cultural factors, Easter would be more important to us than Christmas. As President Hinckley noted in the quote above, Christmas is only significant because of the miracle of Jesus’ atoning sacrifice and his glorious resurrection.
With Palm Sunday and the week before Easter, much of the Christian world enters into a period of reflection and celebration known as “Holy Week.” Each of the events chronicled in this last week casts light on Jesus’ true nature as the Son of God, and reviewing them deepens the faith of believers in his matchless love.
While the LDS community does not formally observe Holy Week, the period from Palm Sunday to Easter morning present a wonderful opportunity for believers to use the scriptures to reflect upon the last days of our Lord’s earthly ministry. Striving to observe Holy Week and celebrate Easter more fully over the past years has convinced me that the best ways to do this are first through personal study, and second, through developing rich family traditions.
My 2011 volume God So Loved the World: The Final Days of the Savior’s Life and a subsequent online blog, LDS Seasonal Materials, represent my previous attempts to make Holy Week more accessible for Latter-day Saints. This current effort, a collation of the New Testament texts of Jesus’ final week, aims to supplement my earlier materials by bringing the scriptural accounts to individuals and families in what I hope is a useful format.
In one sense, it is a collection of scriptures in the early Christian tradition of a lectionary, a collection of readings for given days or occasions. In another, it is a soft academic effort to help readers better understand the source materials—particularly how the four gospels relate to each other while simultaneously painting unique portraits of Jesus and his final week. It is more of a collation than a harmony, and it is arranged as a reader’s edition, formatted in paragraphs rather than verses, labeling sections, and using modern conventions such as quotation marks to better indicate dialogue.
Whether used in connection with my earlier publications or used alone for one’s scripture readings in the days leading up to Easter, I hope that you and your families may find this a useful resource in celebrating the greatest story ever told.
Eric Huntsman Lent 2017
The Last Days of Jesus: A Collation of the New Testament Texts
A Holy Week Lectionary to be used with God So Loved the World, “Easter Meditations: From Palm Sunday to Easter Morning,” or the LDS Seasonal Materials blog
While Latter-day Saints do not formally observe the last days of Jesus’ life, this period is an ideal time to deepen our understanding of and faith in what the Lord did for us. We can use this sacred time to worship with both our minds and our hearts through both concentrated personal study of the pertinent scriptures and rich family traditions that use these events as opportunities to share testimony and feel the spirit.
. ְבָּרוּ� אַ תָּ ה יְיָ אֱ�הֵֽ ינוּ מֶֽ לֶ� הָעוֹלָם שֶׁ הֶחֱיָנוּ וְ קִ יּמָ נוּ וְ הִ גִּ יעָנוּ לזְּמַ ן הַזֶּה
Bārūch atāh Adonai Elohênū melekh ha`ôlām šeheḥeyānû veqîmānû vehigî`ānû lazman hazeh
“Blessed art thou, O Lord our God, king of the universe, who hast given us life and sustained us and brought us to this season”
The Passion Narratives constitute the longest block of material where the narrative of John rather closely follows that of the storyline in the Synoptics. For this and other reasons, scholars postulate the existence of a “primitive passion narrative, perhaps written but probably oral, upon which the evangelists based their accounts of Jesus’ final days. Nevertheless, creating a working chronology of the Savior’s final days is difficult (see God So Loved the World, 129–33).
The chronology adopted here is based upon a sequence of events that works backwards from the empty tomb on the “first day of the week” and uses relative time markers from the Gospel of Mark (i.e., Mark 11:1, 11:12, 11:20, 14:1, 14:12, 15:1, 15:42, 16:1, and 16:2). Within this framework, I have adopted the following chronology in consideration of these additional criteria:
• To what extent can the historical timing, or at least order, of events be recreated?
• When there are historical uncertainties or conflicts, is there a theological or symbolic reason for an event’s timing, addition, or omission?
• What is the utility in accepting, or observing, the traditional timing or liturgical observance of events commemorated by Christian communities?
Passion Week Working Chronology
Friday or Saturday The Anointing in John (kingly)
Palm Sunday The Triumphal Entry; the Cleansing of the Temple (Matt and Luke)
Monday Cursing of the Fig Tree; the Temple Incident in Mark; Teachings in the Temple (focusing on the rejection of Old Israel)
Tuesday Lessons from the Fig Tree; More Teachings in the Temple (focusing on the questioning of Jesus); the Olivet Discourse
“Spy” Wednesday Plot to kill Jesus; the Anointing in Mark and Matthew (priestly); Judas agrees to betray Jesus
Maundy Thursday The Last Supper; Gethsemane; Betrayal and Arrest; Jesus before the Jewish Authorities
Good Friday Jesus in the Hands of the Romans; the Crucifixion; the Burial
Saturday Jesus in the Spirit World
Easter Sunday The Resurrection and Resurrection Appearances
Before the Last Week (Friday, Saturday, or perhaps earlier)
The raising of Lazarus is an appropriate prelude to a celebration of Holy Week historically because the Fourth Gospel presents the story of the death and raising of Lazarus as the proximate cause of the events leading to Jesus’ arrest and execution. Theologically, it serves as an anticipation of his own death and resurrection.
In the Eastern Orthodox tradition, the Saturday before Palm Sunday is celebrated as “Lazarus Saturday. This feast celebrates Jesus’ power over. In actuality, it is not clear how many days before the Triumphal Entry the raising of Lazarus actually took place: the gospel of John records that Jesus withdrew from the public eye to a village called Ephraim for some time before Passover (John 11:54). Then “six days before passover” (12:1), he shared a special meal with the family of Lazarus during which Mary of Bethany anointed Jesus’ feet. This anointing can be taken as opening the “kingly phase” of Jesus’ last week, events such as the Triumphal Entry, the Cleansing of the Temple, and the Mount of Olives Discourse portraying Jesus in his role as King of Israel. See God So Loved the World, 33– 35.
THE RAISING OF LAZARUS John 11:1−57.
Sickness and Death of Lazarus
1 Now a certain man was sick, named Lazarus, of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha. 2 (It was that Mary which anointed the Lord with ointment, and wiped his feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick.) 3 Therefore his sisters sent unto him, saying, “Lord, behold, he whom thou lovest is sick.” 4 When Jesus heard that, he said, “This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby.” 5 Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus.
6 When he had heard therefore that he was sick, he abode two days still in the same place where he was. 7 Then after that saith he to his disciples, “Let us go into Judæa again.” 8 His disciples say unto him, “Master, the Jews of late sought to stone thee; and goest thou thither again?” 9 Jesus answered, “Are there not twelve hours in the day? If any man walk in the day, he stumbleth not, because he seeth the light of this world. 10 But if a man walk in the night, he stumbleth, because there is no light in him.” 11 These things said he: and after that he saith unto them, “Our friend Lazarus sleepeth; but I go, that I may awake him out of sleep.” 12 Then said his disciples, “Lord, if he sleep, he shall do well.” 13 Howbeit Jesus spake of his death: but they thought that he had spoken of taking of rest in sleep.
14 Then said Jesus unto them plainly, “Lazarus is dead. 15 And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, to the intent ye may believe; nevertheless let us go unto him.” 16 Then said Thomas, which is called Didymus, unto his fellow disciples, “Let us also go, that we may die with him.”
Martha’s Confession; Jesus is the Resurrection and the Life
17 Then when Jesus came, he found that he had lain in the grave four days already. 18 Now Bethany was nigh unto Jerusalem, about fifteen furlongs off: 19 And many of the Jews came to Martha and Mary, to comfort them concerning their brother. 20 Then Martha, as soon as she heard that Jesus was coming, went and met him: but Mary sat still in the house.
21 Then said Martha unto Jesus, “Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died. 22 But I know, that even now, whatsoever thou wilt ask of God, God will give it thee.” 23 Jesus saith unto her, “Thy brother shall rise again.” 24 Martha saith unto him, “I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day.”
25 Jesus said unto her, “I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: 26 And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?” 27 She saith unto him, “Yea, Lord: I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world.”
Jesus Mourns with Mary
28 And when she had so said, she went her way, and called Mary her sister secretly, saying, “The Master is come, and calleth for thee.” 29 As soon as she heard that, she arose quickly, and came unto him. 30 Now Jesus was not yet come into the town, but was in that place where Martha met him. 31 The Jews then which were with her in the house, and comforted her, when they saw Mary, that she rose up hastily and went out, followed her, saying, “She goeth unto the grave to weep there.”
32 Then when Mary was come where Jesus was, and saw him, she fell down at his feet, saying unto him, “Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died.” 33When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews also weeping which came with her, he groaned in the spirit, and was troubled, 34And said, “Where have ye laid him?” They said unto him, “Lord, come and see.”
36 Then said the Jews, “Behold how he loved him!” 37 And some of them said, “Could not this man, which opened the eyes of the blind, have caused that even this man should not have died?”
Jesus Raises Lazarus from the Dead
38 Jesus therefore again groaning in himself cometh to the grave. It was a cave, and a stone lay upon it. 39 Jesus said, “Take ye away the stone.” Martha, the sister of him that was dead, saith unto him, “Lord, by this time he stinketh: for he hath been dead four days.” 40 Jesus saith unto her, “Said I not unto thee, that, if thou wouldest believe, thou shouldest see the glory of God?”
41 Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead was laid. And Jesus lifted up his eyes, and said, “Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me. 42 And I knew that thou hearest me always: but because of the people which stand by I said it, that they may believe that thou hast sent me.”
43 And when he thus had spoken, he cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth.” 44 And he that was dead came forth, bound hand and foot with graveclothes: and his face was bound about with a napkin (Greek, soudarion; lit. “facecloth”). Jesus saith unto them, “Loose him, and let him go.”a
45 Then many of the Jews which came to Mary, and had seen the things which Jesus did, believed on him. 46 But some of them went their ways to the Pharisees, and told them what things Jesus had done.
The Plot to Kill Jesus
47 Then gathered the chief priests and the Pharisees a council, and said, “What do we? for this man doeth many miracles. 48 If we let him thus alone, all men will believe on him: and the Romans shall come and take away both our place and nation.” 49 And one of them, named Caiaphas, being the high priest that same year, said unto them, “Ye know nothing at all, 50 Nor consider that it is expedient for us, that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not.” 51 And this spake he not of himself: but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus should die for that nation; 52 And not for that nation only, but that also he should gather together in one the children of God that were scattered abroad.
53 Then from that day forth they took counsel together for to put him to death. 54 Jesus therefore walked no more openly among the Jews; but went thence unto a country near to the wilderness, into a city called Ephraim, and there continued with his disciples.
Jesus and the Coming Passover
55 And the Jews’ passover was nigh at hand: and many went out of the country up to Jerusalem before the passover, to purify themselves. 56 Then sought they for Jesus, and spake among themselves, as they stood in the temple, What think ye, that he will not come to the feast? 57 Now both the chief priests and the Pharisees had given a commandment, that, if any man knew where he were, he should shew it, that they might take him.
JESUS PREPARED FOR PASSOVER
The Anointing in Bethany According to John
Compare to and contrast with the Anointing in Mark and Matthew (Mark 14:3−9; parallel Matthew 26:6−13 on Spy Wednesday).
1Then Jesus six days before the passover came to Bethany, where Lazarus was which had been dead, whom he raised from the dead. 2 There they made him a supper; and Martha served: but Lazarus was one of them that sat at the table with him. Then took Mary a pound of ointment of spikenard, very costly, and anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped his feet with her hair: and the house was filled with the odour of the ointment.
4 Then saith one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, which should betray him, 5 “Why was not this ointment sold for three hundred pence, and given to the poor?” 6 This he said, not that he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and had the bag, and bare what was put therein. 7 Then said Jesus, “Let her alone: against the day of my burying hath she kept this. 8 For the poor always ye have with you; but me ye have not always.”
The Plot to Kill Lazarus
9 Much people of the Jews therefore knew that he was there: and they came not for Jesus’ sake only, but that they might see Lazarus also, whom he had raised from the dead. 10 But the chief priests consulted that they might put Lazarus also to death; 11 Because that by reason of him many of the Jews went away, and believed on Jesus.
Palm Sunday is not a regular part of Latter-day Saint observance, and not even all Christian churches celebrate it. Nevertheless, recounting Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem has a long history in the Christian tradition, and it plays an important role in the liturgies of the Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, and some Protestant churches. Celebrating Palm Sunday truly opens Holy Week, setting it apart from other weeks by focusing my thoughts and faith on Christ my king. See God So Loved the World, 7–15.
The accounts of Matthew and Luke are generally parallels to the earlier account of Mark, so such parallel passages appear indented after their Marcan models. John contains several unique episodes but frequently follows the basic outline of the presumed primitive Passion Narrative, providing an independent witness to some of the events recorded in the Synoptics.
JESUS’ TRIUMPHAL ENTRY INTO JERUSALEM
Mark 11:1–11; parallels Matthew 21:1–11; Luke 19:28–40. John 12:12–19.
Mark 11:1−11: 1 And when they came nigh to Jerusalem, unto Bethphage and Bethany, at the mount of Olives, he sendeth forth two of his disciples, 2 And saith unto them, “Go your way into the village over against you: and as soon as ye be entered into it, ye shall find a colt tied, whereon never man sat; loose him, and bring him. 3 And if any man say unto you, ‘Why do ye this?’ say ye that the Lord hath need of him; and straightway he will send him hither.” 4 And they went their way, and found the colt tied by the door without in a place where two ways met; and they loose him. 5 And certain of them that stood there said unto them, “What do ye, loosing the colt?” 6 And they said unto them even as Jesus had commanded: and they let them go.
7 And they brought the colt to Jesus, and cast their garments on him; and he sat upon him. 8 And many spread their garments in the way: and others cut down branches off the trees, and strawed them in the way. 9 And they that went before, and they that followed, cried, saying, “Hosanna; Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord: 10 Blessed be the kingdom of our father David, that cometh in the name of the Lord: Hosanna in the highest.” 11 And Jesus entered into Jerusalem, and into the temple: and when he had looked round about upon all things, and now the eventide was come, he went out unto Bethany with the twelve.
Matthew 21:1–11: 1 And when they drew nigh unto Jerusalem, and were come to Bethphage, unto the mount of Olives, then sent Jesus two disciples, 2 Saying unto them, “Go into the village over against you, and straightway ye shall find an ass tied, and a colt with her: loose them, and bring them unto me. 3 And if any man say ought unto you, ye shall say, ‘The Lord hath need of them;’ and straightway he will send them.” 4 All this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, 5 “Tell ye the daughter of Sion, Behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek, and sitting upon an ass, and a colt the foal of an ass.”
6 And the disciples went, and did as Jesus commanded them, 7 And brought the ass, and the colt, and put on them their clothes, and they set him thereon. 8 And a very great multitude spread their garments in the way; others cut down branches from the trees, and strawed them in the way. 9 And the multitudes that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, “Hosanna to the Son of David: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest.” 10 And when he was come into Jerusalem, all the city was moved, saying, “Who is this?” 11 And the multitude said, “This is Jesus the prophet of Nazareth of Galilee.”
Luke 19:28–40: 28 And when he had thus spoken, he went before, ascending up to Jerusalem. 29 And it came to pass, when he was come nigh to Bethphage and Bethany, at the mount called the mount of Olives, he sent two of his disciples, 30 Saying, “Go ye into the village over against you; in the which at your entering ye shall find a colt tied, whereon yet never man sat: loose him, and bring him hither. 31 And if any man ask you, ‘Why do ye loose him?’ thus shall ye say unto him, ‘Because the Lord hath need of him.’” 32 And they that were sent went their way, and found even as he had said unto them. 33 And as they were loosing the colt, the owners thereof said unto them, “Why loose ye the colt?” 34 And they said, “The Lord hath need of him.”
35 And they brought him to Jesus: and they cast their garments upon the colt, and they set Jesus thereon.
36 And as he went, they spread their clothes in the way. 37 And when he was come nigh, even now at the descent of the mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen; 38 Saying, ‘Blessed be the King that cometh in the name of the Lord: peace in heaven, and glory in the highest.’ 39 And some of the Pharisees from among the multitude said unto him, “Master, rebuke thy disciples.” 40 And he answered and said unto them, “I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out.”
John 12:12–19: 2 On the next day much people that were come to the feast, when they heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, 13 Took branches of palm trees, and went forth to meet him, and cried, “Hosanna: Blessed is the King of Israel that cometh in the name of the Lord.” 14 And Jesus, when he had found a young ass, sat thereon; as it is written, 15 “Fear not, daughter of Sion: behold, thy King cometh, sitting on an ass’s colt.” 16 These things understood not his disciples at the first: but when Jesus was glorified, then remembered they that these things were written of him, and that they had done these things unto him. 17 The people therefore that was with him when he called Lazarus out of his grave, and raised him from the dead, bare record. 18 For this cause the people also met him, for that they heard that he had done this miracle. 19 The Pharisees therefore said among themselves, “Perceive ye how ye prevail nothing? behold, the world is gone after him.”
Jesus’ Lament over Jerusalem in Luke
Luke 19:41–44: 41 And when he was come near, he beheld the city, and wept over it, 42 Saying, “If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace! but now they are hid from thine eyes. 43 For the days shall come upon thee, that thine enemies shall cast a trench about thee, and compass thee round, and keep thee in on every side, 44 And shall lay thee even with the ground, and thy children within thee; and they shall not leave in thee one stone upon another; because thou knewest not the time of thy visitation.”
JESUS CLEANSES THE TEMPLE
Matthew 21:12–17; parallel Luke 19:45–48.
The accounts of Matthew and Luke seem to have been based upon Mark 11:15–19, but the second gospel moves the entire episode to the next day (traditionally Monday) for literary and theological purposes so that it can be framed by the cursing and withering of the fig tree.
Matthew 21:12–13: 12 And Jesus went into the temple of God, and cast out all them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves, 13 And said unto them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be called the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves.’”
Luke 19:45−46: 45 And he went into the temple, and began to cast out them that sold therein, and them that bought; 46 Saying unto them, “It is written, ‘My house is the house of prayer: but ye have made it a den of thieves.’”
Jesus’ Other Actions in the Temple
Matthew 21:4–17: 14 And the blind and the lame came to him in the temple; and he healed them. 15 And when the
chief priests and scribes saw the wonderful things that he did, and the children crying in the temple, and saying, “Hosanna to the Son of David;” they were sore displeased, 16 And said unto him, “Hearest thou what these say?” And Jesus saith unto them, “Yea; have ye never read, ‘Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast perfected praise?’”
JESUS RETURNS TO BETHANY
Mark 11:11; parallel Matthew 21:17.
Mark 11:11: 11 And Jesus entered into Jerusalem, and into the temple: and when he had looked round about upon all things, and now the eventide was come, he went out unto Bethany with the twelve.
Matthew 21:17: 17 And he left them, and went out of the city into Bethany; and he lodged there.
The episodes of Monday and Tuesday are connected to Jesus’ status as the rightful king and his coming atoning sacrifice. Jesus appears to have spent most of this day in the courts of the Temple, where he was questioned by the authorities and taught the people. Mark also places Jesus’ “cleansing” of the temple on Monday, interwoven with the story of the cursing of the fig tree, which produces markedly different symbolism than the account in Matthew and Luke. See God So Loved the World, 17–25.
CURSING OF THE FIG TREE
Mark 11:12–14; parallel Matthew 21:18–22.
Mark 11:12–14: 12 And on the morrow, when they were come from Bethany, he was hungry: 13 And seeing a fig tree afar off having leaves, he came, if haply he might find any thing thereon: and when he came to it, he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet. 14 And Jesus answered and said unto it, “No man eat fruit of thee hereafter for ever.” And his disciples heard it.
Matthew 21:18–22: 18 Now in the morning as he returned into the city, he hungered. 19 And when he saw a fig tree in the way, he came to it, and found nothing thereon, but leaves only, and said unto it, “Let no fruit grow on thee henceforward for ever.”
Mark moves the fulfilment of the curse until the next day (traditionally Tuesday) after the cleansing of the temple (see Mark 11:20–26) so that the curse and the withering frame the Marcan account of the cleaning of the temple.
And presently the fig tree withered away. 20 And when the disciples saw it, they marvelled, saying, “How soon is the fig tree withered away!” 21 Jesus answered and said unto them, “Verily I say unto you, If ye have faith, and doubt not, ye shall not only do this which is done to the fig tree, but also if ye shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; it shall be done. 22 And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.”
THE TEMPLE INCIDENT IN MARK
Mark places the temple incident in between the cursing of the fig tree Monday morning and its withering Tuesday (see Mark 11:20–26). This placement suggests that the fig tree story should help interpret the temple story, making Jesus’ actions there prophetic acts symbolizing the coming “overturning” or destruction of the temple.
15 And they come to Jerusalem: and Jesus went into the temple, and began to cast out them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves; 16 And would not suffer that any man should carry any vessel through the temple. 17 And he taught, saying unto them, “Is it not written, ‘My house shall be called of all nations the house of prayer?’ but ye have made it a den of thieves.” 18 And the scribes and chief priests heard it, and sought how they might destroy him: for they feared him, because all the people was astonished at his doctrine.
JESUS’ PATTERN OF TEACHING IN THE TEMPLE
Luke 19:47−48: 47And he taught daily in the temple. But the chief priests and the scribes and the chief of the people sought to destroy him, 48And could not find what they might do: for all the people were very attentive to hear him.
According to the Synoptic gospels, during the first part of this week Jesus established the pattern of spending the nights in Bethany and coming to the temple in Jerusalem each day to teach. Many Gospel harmonies, because of their attempts to reconcile Matthew and Luke’s sequence of events with that of Mark, assume that his temple teachings were grouped and delivered together on Tuesday.
Following the Matthean order, Jesus’ teaching did not begin until after the chief priests and elders, who had assumed leadership in Israel, first challenged Jesus (Matthew 21:23). After silencing his opponents by challenging them to declare by what authority John the Baptist had discharged his ministry, Jesus proceeded to teach a series of four allegorical parables that illustrated the rejection of Israel’s current leadership (Matthew 21:28–22:14). The next block of teaching consists of attempts to trap Jesus in his words followed by a final denunciation of the leaders of “old” Israel (Matt 22:15–23:36). The ordering of Matthew thus provides a logical division for the topics that he treated, as well as a convenient way to divide his discourses into two manageable sections for study, the first being treated on Monday and the second on Tuesday.
TEACHINGS IN THE TEMPLE: REJECTION OF OLD ISRAEL
Mark 11:27–12:12; parallels Matthew 21:23–22:15; Luke 20:1–19.
Jesus’ Authority Questioned
Mark 11:27–33: 27 And they come again to Jerusalem: and as he was walking in the temple, there come to him the chief priests, and the scribes, and the elders, 28And say unto him, “By what authority doest thou these things? and who gave thee this authority to do these things?” 29”And Jesus answered and said unto them, I will also ask of you one question, and answer me, and I will tell you by what authority I do these things. 30The baptism of John, was it from heaven, or of men? answer me.” 31And they reasoned with themselves, saying, “If we shall say, ‘From heaven;’ he will say, Why then did ye not believe him? 32But if we shall say, ‘Of men;’ they feared the people: for all men counted John, that he was a prophet indeed.” 33And they answered and said unto Jesus, “We cannot tell.” And Jesus answering saith unto them, “Neither do I tell you by what authority I do these things.”
Matthew 21:23–27: 23And when he was come into the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came unto him as he was teaching, and said, “By what authority doest thou these things? and who gave thee this authority?” 24And Jesus answered and said unto them, “I also will ask you one thing, which if ye tell me, I in like wise will tell you by what authority I do these things. 25The baptism of John, whence was it? from heaven, or of men?” And they reasoned with themselves, saying, “If we shall say, From heaven; he will say unto us, Why did ye not then believe him? 26But if we shall say, Of men; we fear the people; for all hold John as a prophet.” 27And they answered Jesus, and said, “We cannot tell.” And he said unto them, “Neither tell I you by what authority I do these things.”
Luke 20:1–8: 1And it came to pass, that on one of those days, as he taught the people in the temple, and preached the gospel, the chief priests and the scribes came upon him with the elders, 2And spake unto him, saying, “Tell us, by what authority doest thou these things? or who is he that gave thee this authority?” 3And he answered and said unto them, “I will also ask you one thing; and answer me: 4The baptism of John, was it from heaven, or of men?” 5And they reasoned with themselves, saying, “If we shall say, From heaven; he will say, Why then believed ye him not? 6But and if we say, Of men; all the people will stone us: for they be persuaded that John was a prophet.” 7And they answered, that they could not tell whence it was. 8And Jesus said unto them, “Neither tell I you by what authority I do these things.”
Parable of the Two Sons
Matthew 21:28–32: 28”But what think ye? A certain man had two sons; and he came to the first, and said, ‘Son, go work to day in my vineyard.’ 29He answered and said, ‘I will not:’ but afterward he repented, and went. 30And he came to the second, and said likewise. And he answered and said, ‘I go, sir:’ and went not. 31Whether of them twain did the will of his father?” They say unto him, “The first.” Jesus saith unto them, “Verily I say unto you, That the publicans and the harlots go into the kingdom of God before you. 32For John came unto you in the way of righteousness, and ye believed him not: but the publicans and the harlots believed him: and ye, when ye had seen it, repented not afterward, that ye might believe him.”
Parable of the Wicked Tenants
Mark 12:1–12: 1And he began to speak unto them by parables. “A certain man planted a vineyard, and set an hedge about it, and digged a place for the winefat, and built a tower, and let it out to husbandmen, and went into a far country. 2And at the season he sent to the husbandmen a servant, that he might receive from the husbandmen of the fruit of the vineyard. 3And they caught him, and beat him, and sent him away empty. 4And again he sent unto them another servant; and at him they cast stones, and wounded him in the head, and sent him away shamefully handled. 5And again he sent another; and him they killed, and many others; beating some, and killing some. 6Having yet therefore one son, his well-beloved, he sent him also last unto them, saying, ‘They will reverence my son.’ 7But those husbandmen said among themselves, ‘This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and the inheritance shall be ours.’ 8And they took him, and killed him, and cast him out of the vineyard.
9”What shall therefore the lord of the vineyard do? he will come and destroy the husbandmen, and will give the vineyard unto others. 10And have ye not read this scripture; ‘The stone which the builders rejected is become the head of the corner: 11This was the Lord’s doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes?’” 12And they sought to lay hold on him, but feared the people: for they knew that he had spoken the parable against them: and they left him, and went their way.
Matthew 21:33–46: 33Hear another parable: “There was a certain householder, which planted a vineyard, and hedged it round about, and digged a winepress in it, and built a tower, and let it out to husbandmen, and went into a far country: 34And when the time of the fruit drew near, he sent his servants to the husbandmen, that they might receive the fruits of it. 35And the husbandmen took his servants, and beat one, and killed another, and stoned another. 36Again, he sent other servants more than the first: and they did unto them likewise. 37But last of all he sent unto them his son, saying, ‘They will reverence my son.’ 38But when the husbandmen saw the son, they said among themselves, ‘This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and let us seize on his inheritance.’ 39And they caught him, and cast him out of the vineyard, and slew him.
40”When the lord therefore of the vineyard cometh, what will he do unto those husbandmen?” 41They say unto him, “He will miserably destroy those wicked men, and will let out his vineyard unto other husbandmen, which shall render him the fruits in their seasons.” 42Jesus saith unto them, “Did ye never read in the scriptures, ‘The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner: this is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes?’ 43Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof. 44And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.” 45And when the chief priests and Pharisees had heard his parables, they perceived that he spake of them. 46But when they sought to lay hands on him, they feared the multitude, because they took him for a prophet.
Luke 20:9–19: 9Then began he to speak to the people this parable; “A certain man planted a vineyard, and let it forth to husbandmen, and went into a far country for a long time. 10And at the season he sent a servant to the husbandmen, that they should give him of the fruit of the vineyard: but the husbandmen beat him, and sent him away empty. 11And again he sent another servant: and they beat him also, and entreated him shamefully, and sent him away empty. 12And again he sent a third: and they wounded him also, and cast him out. 13Then said the lord of the vineyard, ‘What shall I do? I will send my beloved son: it may be they will reverence him when they see him.’ 14But when the husbandmen saw him, they reasoned among themselves, saying, ‘This is the heir: come, let us kill him, that the inheritance may be ours.’ 15So they cast him out of the vineyard, and killed him.
“What therefore shall the lord of the vineyard do unto them? 16He shall come and destroy these husbandmen, and shall give the vineyard to others.” And when they heard it, they said, “God forbid.” 17And he beheld them, and said, “What is this then that is written, ‘The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner? 18Whosoever shall fall upon that stone shall be broken; but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.’” 19And the chief priests and the scribes the same hour sought to lay hands on him; and they feared the people: for they perceived that he had spoken this parable against them.
Parable of the Wedding Banquet
Matthew 22:1–10: 1And Jesus answered and spake unto them again by parables, and said, 2”The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son, 3And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come. 4Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, ‘Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage.’ 5But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise: 6And the remnant took his servants, and entreated them spitefully, and slew them.
7”But when the king heard thereof, he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city. 8Then saith he to his servants, ‘The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not worthy. 9Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage.’ 10So those servants went out into the highways, and gathered together all as many as they found, both bad and good: and the wedding was furnished with guests.”
Parable of the Man without a Wedding Garment
Matthew 22:11–14: 11And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment: 12And he saith unto him, ‘Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless. 13Then said the king to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. 14For many are called, but few are chosen.’”
THE JOHANINNE PASSION PREDICTION
While the Synoptics feature three discrete Passion Predictions on the road to Jerusalem (Mark 8:31–33, 9:30–32, 10:32–34, and parallels), the Fourth Gospel represents the thrust of these predictions in a single episode in the temple, where it is framed in typical Johannine language and symbolism.
Some Greeks Wish to See Jesus
John 12:20–22: 20And there were certain Greeks among them that came up to worship at the feast: 21The same came therefore to Philip, which was of Bethsaida of Galilee, and desired him, saying, “Sir, we would see Jesus.” 22Philip cometh and telleth Andrew: and again Andrew and Philip tell Jesus.
The Father Promises to Glorify Jesus
John 12:23–30: 23And Jesus answered them, saying, “The hour is come, that the Son of man should be glorified.
24Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit. 25He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal. 26If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honour. 27Now is my soul troubled; and what shall I say? Father, save me from this hour: but for this cause came I unto this hour. 28Father, glorify thy name.”
Then came there a voice from heaven, saying, “I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again.” 29The people therefore, that stood by, and heard it, said that it thundered: others said, “An angel spake to him.”
Jesus Must Be “Lifted Up”
John 12:30–36; cf. John 3:14, 8:28, and 3 Nephi 27:13–15.
John 12:30–36: 30Jesus answered and said, “This voice came not because of me, but for your sakes. 31Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out. 32And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.” 33This he said, signifying what death he should die.
34The people answered him, “We have heard out of the law that Christ abideth for ever: and how sayest thou, The Son of man must be lifted up? who is this Son of man?” 35Then Jesus said unto them, Yet a little while is the light with you. Walk while ye have the light, lest darkness come upon you: for he that walketh in darkness knoweth not whither he goeth. 36While ye have light, believe in the light, that ye may be the children of light.” These things spake Jesus, and departed, and did hide himself from them.
CONCLUSION TO JOHN’S BOOK OF SIGNS
Summary of the People’s Response to Jesus
John 12:37–43: 37But though he had done so many miracles before them, yet they believed not on him:
38That the saying of Esaias the prophet might be fulfilled, which he spake, “Lord, who hath believed our report? and to whom hath the arm of the Lord been revealed?” 39Therefore they could not believe, because that Esaias said again, 40”He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart; that they should not see with their eyes, nor understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them.” 41These things said Esaias, when he saw his glory, and spake of him.
42Nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed on him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue: 43For they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God.
Summary of Jesus’ Teaching
John 12:44–50: 44Jesus cried and said, “He that believeth on me, believeth not on me, but on him that sent me. 45And he that seeth me seeth him that sent me. 46I am come a light into the world, that whosoever believeth on me should not abide in darkness. 47And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world. 48He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day. 49For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak. 50And I know that his commandment is life everlasting: whatsoever I speak therefore, even as the Father said unto me, so I speak.
JESUS LEAVES JERUSALEM FOR THE EVENING
Mark 11:19: 19And when even was come, he went out of the city.
Jesus seems to have continued teaching in the temple in Tuesday, which was also the occasion of Jesus’ powerful prophecies about the future. Both of these episodes signal the imminent shift from the kingly to the priestly phase of the Savior’s last week. Because the questioning of Jesus coincided with the priestly examination of the paschal lambs that were to be sacrificed later in the week, it underscores that Jesus was the actual Lamb of God “who taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). Likewise, his prophecy of his future return in glory makes clear that his actual reception as the True King of Israel lay in the future with his Second Coming, his first coming being focused instead on his great atoning work. See God So Loved the World, 27–37.
LESSON FROM THE WITHERED FIG TREE IN MARK
Mark 11:20–26: 20And in the morning, as they passed by, they saw the fig tree dried up from the roots. 21And Peter calling to remembrance saith unto him, “Master, behold, the fig tree which thou cursedst is withered away.”
22And Jesus answering saith unto them, “Have faith in God. 23For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith. 24Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.
25”And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses. 26But if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses.”
TEACHINGS IN THE TEMPLE: AUTHORITY OF JESUS QUESTIONED
Mark 12:13–37; parallels Matthew 22:15–46, Luke 20:20–47.
Because the questioning of Jesus coincided with the priestly examination of the paschal lambs that were to be sacrificed later in the week, it underscores that Jesus was the actual Lamb of God “who taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1:29).
Question over Paying Taxes
Mark 12:13–17: 13And they send unto him certain of the Pharisees and of the Herodians, to catch him in his words. 14And when they were come, they say unto him, “Master, we know that thou art true, and carest for no man: for thou regardest not the person of men, but teachest the way of God in truth: Is it lawful to give tribute to Cæsar, or not? 15Shall we give, or shall we not give?”
But he, knowing their hypocrisy, said unto them, “Why tempt ye me? bring me a penny, that I may see it.” 16And they brought it. And he saith unto them, “Whose is this image and superscription?” And they said unto him, “Cæsar’s.”17And Jesus answering said unto them, “Render to Cæsar the things that are Cæsar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” And they marvelled at him.
Matthew 22:15–22: 15Then went the Pharisees, and took counsel how they might entangle him in his talk. 16And they sent out unto him their disciples with the Herodians, saying, “Master, we know that thou art true, and teachest the way of God in truth, neither carest thou for any man: for thou regardest not the person of men. 17Tell us therefore, What thinkest thou? Is it lawful to give tribute unto Cæsar, or not?”
18But Jesus perceived their wickedness, and said, “Why tempt ye me, ye hypocrites? 19Shew me the tribute money.” And they brought unto him a penny. 20And he saith unto them, “Whose is this image and superscription?” 21They say unto him, “Cæsar’s.” Then saith he unto them, “Render therefore unto Cæsar the things which are Cæsar’s; and unto God the things that are God’s.” 22When they had heard these words, they marvelled, and left him, and went their way.
Luke 20:20–26: 20And they watched him, and sent forth spies, which should feign themselves just men, that they might take hold of his words, that so they might deliver him unto the power and authority of the governor. 21And they asked him, saying, “Master, we know that thou sayest and teachest rightly, neither acceptest thou the person of any, but teachest the way of God truly: 22Is it lawful for us to give tribute unto Cæsar, or no?”
23But he perceived their craftiness, and said unto them, “Why tempt ye me? 24Shew me a penny. Whose image and superscription hath it?” They answered and said, “Cæsar’s.” 25And he said unto them, “Render therefore unto Cæsar the things which be Cæsar’s, and unto God the things which be God’s.” 26And they could not take hold of his words before the people: and they marvelled at his answer, and held their peace.
Question about the Resurrection
Mark 12:18–27: 18Then come unto him the Sadducees, which say there is no resurrection; and they asked him, saying, 19”Master, Moses wrote unto us, ‘If a man’s brother die, and leave his wife behind him, and leave no children, that his brother should take his wife, and raise up seed unto his brother.’ 20Now there were seven brethren: and the first took a wife, and dying left no seed. 21And the second took her, and died, neither left he any seed: and the third likewise. 22And the seven had her, and left no seed: last of all the woman died also. 23In the resurrection therefore, when they shall rise, whose wife shall she be of them? for the seven had her to wife.”
24And Jesus answering said unto them, “Do ye not therefore err, because ye know not the scriptures, neither the power of God? 25For when they shall rise from the dead, they neither marry, nor are given in marriage; but are as the angels which are in heaven. 26And as touching the dead, that they rise: have ye not read in the book of Moses, how in the bush God spake unto him, saying, ‘I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob?’ 27He is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living: ye therefore do greatly err.”
Matthew 22:23–33: 23The same day came to him the Sadducees, which say that there is no resurrection, and asked him, 24”Saying, Master, Moses said, If a man die, having no children, his brother shall marry his wife, and raise up seed unto his brother. 25Now there were with us seven brethren: and the first, when he had married a wife, deceased, and, having no issue, left his wife unto his brother: 26Likewise the second also, and the third, unto the seventh. 27And last of all the woman died also. 28Therefore in the resurrection whose wife shall she be of the seven? for they all had her.”
29Jesus answered and said unto them, “Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God. 30For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven. 31But as touching the resurrection of the dead, have ye not read that which was spoken unto you by God, saying, 32’I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob?’ God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.” 33And when the multitude heard this, they were astonished at his doctrine.
Luke 20:27–40: 27Then came to him certain of the Sadducees, which deny that there is any resurrection; and they asked him, 28”Saying, Master, Moses wrote unto us, If any man’s brother die, having a wife, and he die without children, that his brother should take his wife, and raise up seed unto his brother. 29There were therefore seven brethren: and the first took a wife, and died without children. 30And the second took her to wife, and he died childless. 31And the third took her; and in like manner the seven also: and they left no children, and died. 32Last of all the woman died also. 33Therefore in the resurrection whose wife of them is she? for seven had her to wife.”
34And Jesus answering said unto them, “The children of this world marry, and are given in marriage: 35But they which shall be accounted worthy to obtain that world, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry, nor are given in marriage: 36Neither can they die any more: for they are equal unto the angels; and are the children of God, being the children of the resurrection. 37Now that the dead are raised, even Moses shewed at the bush, when he calleth the Lord the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. 38For he is not a God of the dead, but of the living: for all live unto him.”
39Then certain of the scribes answering said, “Master, thou hast well said.” 40And after that they durst not ask him any question at all.
The Great Commandments
Mark 12:28–34: 28And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, “Which is the first commandment of all?” 29And Jesus answered him, “The first of all the commandments is, ‘Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: 30And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength:’ this is the first commandment. 31And the second is like, namely this, ‘Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.’ There is none other commandment greater than these.”
32And the scribe said unto him, “Well, Master, thou hast said the truth: for there is one God; and there is none other but he: 33And to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the soul, and with all the strength, and to love his neighbour as himself, is more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.” 34And when Jesus saw that he answered discreetly, he said unto him, “Thou art not far from the kingdom of God.” And no man after that durst ask him any question.
Matthew 22:34–40: 34But when the Pharisees had heard that he had put the Sadducees to silence, they were gathered together. 35Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying, 36”Master, which is the great commandment in the law?” 37Jesus said unto him, “‘Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.’ 38This is the first and great commandment. 39And the second is like unto it, ‘Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.’ 40On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
Question about David’s Son
Mark 12:35–37: 35And Jesus answered and said, while he taught in the temple, “How say the scribes that Christ is the Son of David?” 36For David himself said by the Holy Ghost, ‘The LORD said to my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool.’ 37David therefore himself calleth him Lord; and whence is he then his son?” And the common people heard him gladly.
Matthew 22:41–46: 41While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them, 42Saying, “What think ye of Christ? whose son is he?” They say unto him, “The Son of David.” 43He saith unto them, “How then doth David in spirit call him Lord, saying, 44’The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool?’ 45If David then call him Lord, how is he his son?” 46And no man was able to answer him a word, neither durst any man from that day forth ask him any more questions.
Luke 20:41–44: 41And he said unto them, “How say they that Christ is David’s son? 42And David himself saith in the book of Psalms, “The LORD said unto my Lord, ‘Sit thou on my right hand, 43Till I make thine enemies thy footstool.’ 44David therefore calleth him Lord, how is he then his son?”
DENUNCIATION OF THE LEADERS OF OLD ISRAEL
Mark 12:38–40; parallels Matthew 23:1–12, Luke 20:45–47. Matthew 23:13–36 (unique material).
Hypocrisy of Scribes [and Pharisees]
Mark 12:38–44: 38And he said unto them in his doctrine, “Beware of the scribes, which love to go in long clothing, and love salutations in the marketplaces, 39And the chief seats in the synagogues, and the uppermost rooms at feasts: 40Which devour widows’ houses, and for a pretence make long prayers: these shall receive greater damnation.”
Matthew 23:1–12: 1Then spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples, 2Saying, “The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat: 3All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not. 4For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men’s shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers. 5But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments, 6And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues, 7And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, ‘Rabbi, Rabbi.’
8”But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren. 9And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven. 10Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ. 11But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant. 12And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.”
Luke 20:45–47: 45Then in the audience of all the people he said unto his disciples, 46”Beware of the scribes, which desire to walk in long robes, and love greetings in the markets, and the highest seats in the synagogues, and the chief rooms at feasts; 47Which devour widows’ houses, and for a shew make long prayers: the same shall receive greater damnation.”
Seven Prophetic Woes
Matthew preserves much more sayings material than does Mark. This often includes much more strident condemnation of Jesus’ Pharisaic opponents, as is the case with the seven woes pronounced upon them here.
Matthew 23:13–36: 13”But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in. 14Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows’ houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation. 15Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves. 16Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, ‘Whosoever shall swear by the temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he is a debtor!’
17”Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifieth the gold? 18And, Whosoever shall swear by the altar, it is nothing; but whosoever sweareth by the gift that is upon it, he is guilty. 19Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gift, or the altar that sanctifieth the gift? 20Whoso therefore shall swear by the altar, sweareth by it, and by all things thereon. 21And whoso shall swear by the temple, sweareth by it, and by him that dwelleth therein. 22And he that shall swear by heaven, sweareth by the throne of God, and by him that sitteth thereon.
23”Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone. 24Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel. 25Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess. 26Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also. 27Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness. 28Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity. 29Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous, 30And say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets. 31Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets. 32Fill ye up then the measure of your fathers. 33Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?
34”Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and scribes: and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city: 35That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar. 36Verily I say unto you, All these things shall come upon this generation.”
THE WIDOW’S OFFERING
Mark 12:41–44; parallel Luke 21:1–4.
Mark 12:41–44: 41And Jesus sat over against the treasury, and beheld how the people cast money into the treasury: and many that were rich cast in much. 42And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing. 43And he called unto him his disciples, and saith unto them, “Verily I say unto you, That this poor widow hath cast more in, than all they which have cast into the treasury: 44For all they did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living.”
Luke 21:1–4: 1And he looked up, and saw the rich men casting their gifts into the treasury. 2And he saw also a certain poor widow casting in thither two mites. 3And he said, “Of a truth I say unto you, that this poor widow hath cast in more than they all: 4For all these have of their abundance cast in unto the offerings of God: but she of her penury hath cast in all the living that she had.”
THE OLIVET DISCOURSE OR “LITTLE APOCALYPSE”
Mark 13:1–38; parallels Matthew 24:1–25:46; Luke 21:5–38.
At the close of Jesus’ public ministry, he left the temple and took some of his trusted disciples onto the Mount of Olives, where they had a striking view of the temple and the city of Jerusalem. Central to this prophetic discourse is a prophecy of the return of the Son of Man in glory (Mark 13:26 and parallels), which portrays Jesus as a heavenly king.
Destruction of the Temple Foretold
Mark 13:1–2: 1And as he went out of the temple, one of his disciples saith unto him, “Master, see what manner of stones and what buildings are here!” 2And Jesus answering said unto him, “Seest thou these great buildings? there shall not be left one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.”
Matthew 24:1–2: 1And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him for to shew him the buildings of the temple. 2And Jesus said unto them, “See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.”
Luke 21:5–6: 5And as some spake of the temple, how it was adorned with goodly stones and gifts, he said, 6”As for these things which ye behold, the days will come, in the which there shall not be left one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.”
False Christs and Wars Foreseen
Mark 13:3–8: 3And as he sat upon the mount of Olives over against the temple, Peter and James and John and Andrew asked him privately, 4”Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign when all these things shall be fulfilled?” 5And Jesus answering them began to say, “Take heed lest any man deceive you: 6For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many. 7And when ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars, be ye not troubled: for such things must needs be; but the end shall not be yet. 8For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be earthquakes in divers places, and there shall be famines and troubles: these are the beginnings of sorrows.”
Matthew 24:3–8: 3And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, “Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?” 4And Jesus answered and said unto them, “Take heed that no man deceive you. 5For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many. 6And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. 7For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. 8All these are the beginning of sorrows.”
Luke 21:7–11: 7And they asked him, saying, “Master, but when shall these things be? and what sign will there be when these things shall come to pass?” 8And he said, “Take heed that ye be not deceived: for many shall come in my name, saying, ‘I am Christ; and the time draweth near:’ go ye not therefore after them. 9But when ye shall hear of wars and commotions, be not terrified: for these things must first come to pass; but the end is not by and by.” 10Then said he unto them, “Nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: 11And great earthquakes shall be in divers places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven.:
Mark 13:9–13: 9”But take heed to yourselves: for they shall deliver you up to councils; and in the synagogues ye shall be beaten: and ye shall be brought before rulers and kings for my sake, for a testimony against them. 10And the gospel must first be published among all nations. 11But when they shall lead you, and deliver you up, take no thought beforehand what ye shall speak, neither do ye premeditate: but whatsoever shall be given you in that hour, that speak ye: for it is not ye that speak, but the Holy Ghost. 12Now the brother shall betray the brother to death, and the father the son; and children shall rise up against their parents, and shall cause them to be put to death. 13And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.”
Matthew 24:9–14: 9”Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake. 10And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another. 11And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. 12And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. 13But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved. 14And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.”
Luke 21:12–19: 12”But before all these, they shall lay their hands on you, and persecute you, delivering you up to the synagogues, and into prisons, being brought before kings and rulers for my name’s sake. 13And it shall turn to you for a testimony. 14Settle it therefore in your hearts, not to meditate before what ye shall answer: 15For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay nor resist. 16And ye shall be betrayed both by parents, and brethren, and kinsfolks, and friends; and some of you shall they cause to be put to death. 17And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake. 18But there shall not an hair of your head perish. 19In your patience possess ye your souls.”
The “Abomination of Desolation”
Mark 13:14–23: 14”But when ye shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing where it ought not, (let him that readeth understand,) then let them that be in Judæa flee to the mountains: 15And let him that is on the housetop not go down into the house, neither enter therein, to take any thing out of his house: 16And let him that is in the field not turn back again for to take up his garment.
17”But woe to them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days! 18And pray ye that your flight be not in the winter. 19For in those days shall be affliction, such as was not from the beginning of the creation which God created unto this time, neither shall be. 20And except that the Lord had shortened those days, no flesh should be saved: but for the elect’s sake, whom he hath chosen, he hath shortened the days.
21”And then if any man shall say to you, ‘Lo, here is Christ; or, lo, he is there;’ believe him not: 22For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall shew signs and wonders, to seduce, if it were possible, even the elect. 23But take ye heed: behold, I have foretold you all things.”
Matthew 24:15–28: 15”When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:) 16Then let them which be in Judæa flee into the mountains: 17Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house: 18Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes.
19”And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days! 20But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day: 21For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. 22And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.
23”Then if any man shall say unto you, ‘Lo, here is Christ, or there;’ believe it not. 24For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. 25Behold, I have told you before. 26Wherefore if they shall say unto you, ‘Behold, he is in the desert;’ go not forth: ‘behold, he is in the secret chambers;’ believe it not. 27For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. 28For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together.”
Luke 21:20–24: 20”And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh. 21Then let them which are in Judæa flee to the mountains; and let them which are in the midst of it depart out; and let not them that are in the countries enter thereinto. 22For these be the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled. 23But woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck, in those days! for there shall be great distress in the land, and wrath upon this people. 24And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.”
The Coming of the Son of Man
Mark 13:24–27: 24”But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, 25And the stars of heaven shall fall, and the powers that are in heaven shall be shaken. 26And then shall they see the Son of man coming in the clouds with great power and glory. 27And then shall he send his angels, and shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the earth to the uttermost part of heaven.”
Matthew 24:29–31: 29”Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken: 30And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.”
Luke 21:25–28: 25”And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; 26Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. 27And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. 28And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.”
Lesson of the Fig Tree
Mark 13:28–31: 28”Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When her branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is near: 29So ye in like manner, when ye shall see these things come to pass, know that it is nigh, even at the doors. 30Verily I say unto you, that this generation shall not pass, till all these things be done. 31Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away.”
Matthew 24:32–35: 32”Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh: 33So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. 34Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled. 35Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.”
Luke 21:29–33: 29And he spake to them a parable; “Behold the fig tree, and all the trees; 30When they now shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh at hand. 31So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand. 32Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled. 33Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away.”
“Watch ye therefore . . .”
Mark 13:32–37: 32”But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father. 33Take ye heed, watch and pray: for ye know not when the time is. 34For the Son of man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch. 35Watch ye therefore: for ye know not when the master of the house cometh, at even, or at midnight, or at the cockcrowing, or in the morning: 36Lest coming suddenly he find you sleeping. 37And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch.”
Matthew 24:36–44: 36”But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only. 37But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. 38For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, 39And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. 40Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left. 41Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left.
42”Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come. 43But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up. 44Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.”
Luke 21:34–36: 34”And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares. 35For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth. 36Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.”
The Gospel of Matthew provides four parables illustrating the need for preparation that are not paralleled in Mark.
Parable of the Faithful and Unfaithful Slave
Matthew 24:45–51: 45”Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season? 46Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing. 47Verily I say unto you, That he shall make him ruler over all his goods. 48But and if that evil servant shall say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; 49And shall begin to smite his fellowservants, and to eat and drink with the drunken; 50The lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of, 51And shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”
Parable of the Tens Bridesmaids
Matthew 25:1–13: 1”Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. 2And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. 3They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: 4But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. 5While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. 6And at midnight there was a cry made, ‘Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him.’ 7Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. 8And the foolish said unto the wise, ‘Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out.’ 9But the wise answered, saying, ‘Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves.’
10”And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut. 11Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, ‘Lord, Lord, open to us.’ 12But he answered and said, ‘Verily I say unto you, I know you not.’ 13Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.”
Parable of the Talents
Matthew 25:14–30: 14”For the kingdom of heaven is as a man travelling into a far country, who called his own servants, and delivered unto them his goods. 15And unto one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one; to every man according to his several ability; and straightway took his journey. 16Then he that had received the five talents went and traded with the same, and made them other five talents. 17And likewise he that had received two, he also gained other two. 18But he that had received one went and digged in the earth, and hid his lord’s money.
19”After a long time the lord of those servants cometh, and reckoneth with them. 20And so he that had received five talents came and brought other five talents, saying, ‘Lord, thou deliveredst unto me five talents: behold, I have gained beside them five talents more.’ 21His lord said unto him, ‘Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.’ 22He also that had received two talents came and said, ‘Lord, thou deliveredst unto me two talents: behold, I have gained two other talents beside them.’ 23His lord said unto him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.’ 24Then he which had received the one talent came and said, ‘Lord, I knew thee that thou art an hard man, reaping where thou hast not sown, and gathering where thou hast not strawed: 25And I was afraid, and went and hid thy talent in the earth: lo, there thou hast that is thine.’ 26His lord answered and said unto him, ‘Thou wicked and slothful servant, thou knewest that I reap where I sowed not, and gather where I have not strawed: 27Thou oughtest therefore to have put my money to the exchangers, and then at my coming I should have received mine own with usury. 28Take therefore the talent from him, and give it unto him which hath ten talents. 29For unto every one that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance: but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath. 30And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’”
Parable of the Sheep and the Goats
Matthew 25:31–46: 31”When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: 32And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: 33And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.
34Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, ‘Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 35For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: 36Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.’ 37Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? 38When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? 39Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?’ 40And the King shall answer and say unto them, ‘Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.’
41”Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, ‘Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: 42For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink: 43I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.’ 44Then shall they also answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?’ 45Then shall he answer them, saying, ‘Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.’ 46And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.”
DAILY MINISTRY IN THE TEMPLE SUMMARIZED
Luke 21:37–38: 37And in the day time he was teaching in the temple; and at night he went out, and abode in the mount that is called the mount of Olives. 38And all the people came early in the morning to him in the temple, for to hear him.
Some gospel harmonies do not list any events for the Wednesday of Jesus’ last week, but using Mark’s time references as a guide, three episodes actually fall on this day in our working chronology. Additionally, these events have long been assigned to Wednesday in the traditional Christian liturgical calendar. These are the plot of the Jewish leadership against Jesus, the story of an unnamed woman in Bethany anointing Jesus’ head, and Judas’ decision to betray Jesus.
The collocation of these three episodes in the Marcan narrative, which is followed by Matthew, highlights the loving act of the unnamed woman by framing it with dark stories of conspiracy and betrayal. Indeed, in some traditions this day has been called “Spy Wednesday” because of Judas’ actions. See God So Loved the World, 39–47.
THE PLOT TO KILL JESUS
Mark 14:1–2; Matthew 26:1–5; Luke 22:1–2.
Mark 14:1–2: 1After two days was the feast of the passover, and of unleavened bread: and the chief priests and the scribes sought how they might take him by craft, and put him to death. 2But they said, Not on the feast day, lest there be an uproar of the people.
Matthew 26:1–5: 1And it came to pass, when Jesus had finished all these sayings, he said unto his disciples, 2”Ye know that after two days is the feast of the passover, and the Son of man is betrayed to be crucified.”
3Then assembled together the chief priests, and the scribes, and the elders of the people, unto the palace of the high priest, who was called Caiaphas, 4And consulted that they might take Jesus by subtilty, and kill him. 5But they said, “Not on the feast day, lest there be an uproar among the people.”
Luke 22:1–2: 1Now the feast of unleavened bread drew nigh, which is called the Passover. 2And the chief priests and scribes sought how they might kill him; for they feared the people.
THE ANOINTING AT BETHANY IN MARK AND MATTHEW
Mark 14:3–9; parallel Matthew 26:6–13.
Mark 14:3–9: 3And being in Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, as he sat at meat, there came a woman having an alabaster box of ointment of spikenard very precious; and she brake the box, and poured it on his head. 4And there were some that had indignation within themselves, and said, “Why was this waste of the ointment made? 5For it might have been sold for more than three hundred pence, and have been given to the poor. And they murmured against her.”
6And Jesus said, “Let her alone; why trouble ye her? she hath wrought a good work on me. 7For ye have the poor with you always, and whensoever ye will ye may do them good: but me ye have not always. 8She hath done what she could: she is come aforehand to anoint my body to the burying. 9Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached throughout the whole world, this also that she hath done shall be spoken of for a memorial of her.”
Matthew 26:6–13: 6Now when Jesus was in Bethany, in the house of Simon the leper, 7There came unto him a woman having an alabaster box of very precious ointment, and poured it on his head, as he sat at meat. 8But when his disciples saw it, they had indignation, saying, “To what purpose is this waste? 9For this ointment might have been sold for much, and given to the poor.”
10When Jesus understood it, he said unto them, “Why trouble ye the woman? for she hath wrought a good work upon me. 11For ye have the poor always with you; but me ye have not always. 12For in that she hath poured this ointment on my body, she did it for my burial. 13Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached in the whole world, there shall also this, that this woman hath done, be told for a memorial of her.”
JUDAS AGREES TO BETRAY JESUS
Mark 14:10–11; parallels Matthew 26:14–16; Luke 22:3–6.
Mark 14:10–11: 10And Judas Iscariot, one of the twelve, went unto the chief priests, to betray him unto them. 11And when they heard it, they were glad, and promised to give him money. And he sought how he might conveniently betray him.
Matthew 26:14–16: 14Then one of the twelve, called Judas Iscariot, went unto the chief priests, 15And said unto them, “What will ye give me, and I will deliver him unto you?” And they covenanted with him for thirty pieces of silver. 16And from that time he sought opportunity to betray him.
Luke 22:3–6: 3Then entered Satan into Judas surnamed Iscariot, being of the number of the twelve. 4And he went his way, and communed with the chief priests and captains, how he might betray him unto them. 5And they were glad, and covenanted to give him money. 6And he promised, and sought opportunity to betray him unto them in the absence of the multitude.
The Thursday before Easter is a day rich in deep, often poignant events. These include Jesus’ last supper with his disciples, at which he instituted the sacrament and washed his disciples’ feet; his prayer and agony in the Garden of Gethsemane; his betrayal by Judas and abandonment by the other disciples; and his arrest, cynical examination, and abuse by the Jewish authorities of the time.
Known as Holy Thursday in the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox communities, in many English-speaking countries this Thursday is sometimes called “Maundy Thursday.” The word “maundy” is an early English form of the Latin mandatum for “commandment” and recalls Jesus’ teaching “A new commandment I give you, that ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye love one another” (John 13:34). See God So Loved the World, 49–69.
THE LAST SUPPER
Mark 14:12–26a; parallels Matthew 26:17–30a; Luke 22:7–38. John 13:1–14:31.
The day before his crucifixion, Jesus sent two of his disciples to secure a guest chamber somewhere in Jerusalem (see Location Possibilities) where he could share final meal with his friends. Mark, Matthew, and Luke, the three so-called synoptic Gospels, agree that this was a Passover meal, although John sees Passover as beginning at sunset the next day (see Timing). The place of the Last Supper was the occasion of Jesus’ prediction of Judas’ betrayal, the institution of the sacrament, the washing of feet, other important final teachings, and, in Luke and John, a prediction of Peter’s denial
Preparation of the meal
Mark 14:12–16: 12And the first day of unleavened bread, when they killed the passover, his disciples said unto him, “Where wilt thou that we go and prepare that thou mayest eat the passover?” 13And he sendeth forth two of his disciples, and saith unto them, “Go ye into the city, and there shall meet you a man bearing a pitcher of water: follow him. 14And wheresoever he shall go in, say ye to the goodman of the house, The Master saith, ‘Where is the guestchamber [Greek, katalyma], where I shall eat the passover with my disciples?’ 15And he will shew you a large upper room [Greek, anagion] furnished and prepared: there make ready for us.” 16And his disciples went forth, and came into the city, and found as he had said unto them: and they made ready the passover.
Matthew 26:17–19: 17Now the first day of the feast of unleavened bread the disciples came to Jesus, saying unto him, “Where wilt thou that we prepare for thee to eat the passover?” 18And he said, “Go into the city to such a man, and say unto him, The Master saith, ‘My time is at hand; I will keep the passover at thy house with my disciples.’” 19And the disciples did as Jesus had appointed them; and they made ready the passover.
Luke 22:7–13: 7Then came the day of unleavened bread, when the passover must be killed. 8And he sent Peter and John, saying, “Go and prepare us the passover, that we may eat.” 9And they said unto him, “Where wilt thou that we prepare?” 10And he said unto them, “Behold, when ye are entered into the city, there shall a man meet you, bearing a pitcher of water; follow him into the house where he entereth in. 11And ye shall say unto the goodman of the house, ‘The Master saith unto thee, Where is the guestchamber [Greek, katalyma, sames as 2:7], where I shall eat the passover with my disciples?’ 12And he shall shew you a large upper room furnished: there make ready.” 13And they went, and found as he had said unto them: and they made ready the passover.
John 13:1–2: 1Now before the feast of the passover, when Jesus knew that his hour was come that he should depart out of this world unto the Father, having loved his own which were in the world, he loved them unto the end. 2And supper being ended, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him.
Judas’ betrayal predicted
Mark 14:17–21: 17And in the evening he cometh with the twelve. 18And as they sat [Greek, anakeimenōn, “recline”] and did eat, Jesus said, “Verily I say unto you, One of you which eateth with me shall betray me.” 19And they began to be sorrowful, and to say unto him one by one, “Is it I?” and another said, “Is it I?” 20And he answered and said unto them, “It is one of the twelve, that dippeth with me in the dish. 21The Son of man indeed goeth, as it is written of him: but woe to that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! good were it for that man if he had never been born.”
Matthew 26:20–25: 20Now when the even was come, he sat [Greek, anekeito, “reclined”] down with the twelve. 21And as they did eat, he said, “Verily I say unto you, that one of you shall betray me.” 22And they were exceeding sorrowful, and began every one of them to say unto him, “Lord, is it I?” 23And he answered and said, “He that dippeth his hand with me in the dish, the same shall betray me. 24The Son of man goeth as it is written of him: but woe unto that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! it had been good for that man if he had not been born.” 25Then Judas, which betrayed him, answered and said, “Master, is it I?” He said unto him, “Thou hast said.”
Luke 22:21–23: 21”But, behold, the hand of him that betrayeth me is with me on the table. 22And truly the Son of man goeth, as it was determined: but woe unto that man by whom he is betrayed!” 23And they began to enquire among themselves, which of them it was that should do this thing.
John 13:21–30: 21When Jesus had thus said, he was troubled in spirit, and testified, and said, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, that one of you shall betray me.” 22Then the disciples looked one on another, doubting of whom he spake. 23Now there was leaning on Jesus’ bosom one of his disciples, whom Jesus loved. 24Simon Peter therefore beckoned to him, that he should ask who it should be of whom he spake. 25He then lying on Jesus’ breast saith unto him, “Lord, who is it?” 26Jesus answered, “He it is, to whom I shall give a sop, when I have dipped it.” And when he had dipped the sop, he gave it to Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon. 27And after the sop Satan entered into him. Then said Jesus unto him, “That thou doest, do quickly.” 28Now no man at the table knew for what intent he spake this unto him. 29For some of them thought, because Judas had the bag, that Jesus had said unto him, “Buy those things that we have need of against the feast;” or, that he should give something to the poor. 30He then having received the sop went immediately out: and it was night.
Institution of the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper
The omission of the institution of the sacrament is the first of several significant differences between the Johannine Passion Narrative and that of the Synoptics. For a discussion of these, see Eric D. Huntsman, “The Lamb of God: Unique Aspects of the Passion Narrative in John,” Behold the Lamb of God: The Fourth Annual BYU Religious Education Easter Conference (Provo, Utah: Religious Studies Center, 2008), 49–70.
Mark 14:22–25: 22And as they did eat, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and brake it, and gave to them, and said, “Take, eat: this is my body.” 23And he took the cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them: and they all drank of it. 24And he said unto them, “This is my blood of the new testament [diathēkēs, “covenant”], which is shed for many. 25Verily I say unto you, I will drink no more of the fruit of the vine, until that day that I drink it new in the kingdom of God.”
Matthew 26:26–29:26And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, “Take, eat; this is my body.” 27And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, “Drink ye all of it; 28For this is my blood of the new testament [diathēkēs, “covenant”], which is shed for many for the remission of sins. 29But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.”
Luke 22:14–20: 14And when the hour was come, he sat down, and the twelve apostles with him. 15And he said unto them, “With desire I have desired to eat this passover with you before I suffer: 16For I say unto you, I will not any more eat thereof, until it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God.” 17And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and said, “Take this, and divide it among yourselves: 18For I say unto you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom of God shall come.” 19And he took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, “This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me.” 20Likewise also the cup after supper, saying, “This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you.”
Jesus Washes His Disciples’ Feet
John surprisingly omits the account of the institution of the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, although sacramental imagery is woven throughout the Fourth Gospel (e.g., the Wedding at Cana and the Bread of Life Discourse). Instead, he records another ritual act, Jesus’ washing of his disciples’ feet.
John 13:3–11: 3Jesus knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he was come from God, and went to God; 4He riseth from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself. 5After that he poureth water into a bason, and began to wash the disciples’ feet, and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded. 6Then cometh he to Simon Peter: and Peter saith unto him, “Lord, dost thou wash my feet?” 7Jesus answered and said unto him, “What I do thou knowest not now; but thou shalt know hereafter.” 8Peter saith unto him, “Thou shalt never wash my feet.” Jesus answered him, “If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me.” 9Simon Peter saith unto him, “Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head.” 10Jesus saith to him, “He that is washed needeth not save to wash his feet, but is clean every whit: and ye are clean, but not all.” 11For he knew who should betray him; therefore said he, “Ye are not all clean.”
THE FAREWELL DISCOURSES
John features extended discourses on love, the Holy Ghost, and Jesus’ relationship with both the Father and his disciples. A Few of these teachings are also paralleled in Luke. This material overlaps with some of the material in the Synoptics that is labeled here “From the Upper Room, Through the Qidron Valley, to Gethsemane.”
The Greatest Serves the Least
Luke 22:24–30: 24And there was also a strife among them, which of them should be accounted the greatest. 25And he said unto them, “The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and they that exercise authority upon them are called benefactors. 26But ye shall not be so: but he that is greatest among you, let him be as the younger; and he that is chief, as he that doth serve. 27For whether is greater, he that sitteth at meat, or he that serveth? is not he that sitteth at meat? but I am among you as he that serveth. 28Ye are they which have continued with me in my temptations. 29And I appoint unto you a kingdom, as my Father hath appointed unto me; 30That ye may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.”
John 13:12–20: 12So after he had washed their feet, and had taken his garments, and was set down again, he said unto them, “Know ye what I have done to you? 13Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well; for so I am. 14If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s feet. 15For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you. 16Verily, verily, I say unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord; neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him. 17If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them. 18I speak not of you all: I know whom I have chosen: but that the scripture may be fulfilled, He that eateth bread with me hath lifted up his heel against me. 19Now I tell you before it come, that, when it is come to pass, ye may believe that I am he. 20Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that receiveth whomsoever I send receiveth me; and he that receiveth me receiveth him that sent me.”
Love, the new commandment
John 13:31–35: 31Therefore, when he was gone out, Jesus said, “Now is the Son of man glorified, and God is glorified in him. 32If God be glorified in him, God shall also glorify him in himself, and shall straightway glorify him. 33Little children, yet a little while I am with you. Ye shall seek me: and as I said unto the Jews, Whither I go, ye cannot come; so now I say to you. 34A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. 35By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.”
Peter’s Denial Predicted (Luke 22:31—34; John 13:36—38; see Walk through the Qidron Valley for Mark and Matthew).
For the difficult issue of Peter’s denial of Jesus, see Huntsman, “The Accounts of Peter’s Denial: Understanding the Texts and Motifs,” in The Ministry of Peter, the Chief Apostle (Deseret Book, 2014), 127–49.
Luke 22:31–34: 31And the Lord said, “Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat: 32But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.” 33And he said unto him, “Lord, I am ready to go with thee, both into prison, and to death.” 34And he said, “I tell thee, Peter, the cock shall not crow this day, before that thou shalt thrice deny that thou knowest me.”
John 13:36–38: 36Simon Peter said unto him, “Lord, whither goest thou?” Jesus answered him, “Whither I go, thou canst not follow me now; but thou shalt follow me afterwards.” 37Peter said unto him, “Lord, why cannot I follow thee now? I will lay down my life for thy sake.” 38Jesus answered him, “Wilt thou lay down thy life for my sake? Verily, verily, I say unto thee, The cock shall not crow, till thou hast denied me thrice.”
Luke 22:35–38: 35And he said unto them, “When I sent you without purse, and scrip, and shoes, lacked ye any thing?” And they said, “Nothing.” 36Then said he unto them, “But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one. 37For I say unto you, that this that is written must yet be accomplished in me, ‘And he was reckoned among the transgressors: for the things concerning me have an end.’” 38And they said, “Lord, behold, here are two swords.” And he said unto them, “It is enough.”
Jesus, the way to the Father
John 14:1–6: 1”Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. 2In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. 4And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.” 5Thomas saith unto him, “Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way?” 6Jesus saith unto him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”
Jesus and the Father
John 14:7–14: 7”If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.” 8Philip saith unto him, “Lord, shew us the Father, and it sufficeth us.” 9Jesus saith unto him, “Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, ‘Shew us the Father?’ 10Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works. 11Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works’ sake. 12Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father. 13And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.”
The Farewell Discussions in John include important teachings about the Holy Ghost in his role as the Paraclete or “Helper” (Greek, paraklētos, literally “one called to help”; KJV, “comforter”). Although the Spirit clearly does comfort us, these five Paraclete sayings actually stress the role of the Holy Ghost as a helper, a teacher, a witness, a prosecutor, and a revealer or guide.
Promise of the “Comforter” (First Paraclete Saying)
John 14:15–20: 15”If ye love me, keep my commandments. 16And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter [Greek, paraklētos, “Helper,” “Advocate”], that he may abide with you for ever; 17Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. 18I will not leave you comfortless [Greek, orphanous, “orphans,” “deprived of parents”]: I will come to you. 19Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also. 20At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.
Love and Obedience
John 15:21–24: 21”He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.” 22Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, “Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world?” 23Jesus answered and said unto him, “If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. 24He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me.”
The Spirit Teaches all Things (Second Paraclete Saying)
John 14:25–26: 25”These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you. 26But the Comforter [Greek, paraklētos, “Helper,” “Advocate”], which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.”
Peace of Christ and the Love of the Father
John 14:27–31: 27”Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. 28Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I. 29And now I have told you before it come to pass, that, when it is come to pass, ye might believe. 30Hereafter I will not talk much with you: for the prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me. 31But that the world may know that I love the Father; and as the Father gave me commandment, even so I do. Arise, let us go hence.”
Singing a hymn before leaving for Gethsemane
Mark 14:26a: 26bAnd when they had sung an hymn . . .
Matthew 26:30a: 30aAnd when they had sung an hymn, they went out into the mount of Olives.
FROM THE UPPER ROOM, THROUGH THE QIDRON VALLEY, TO GETHSEMANE
Mark 14:26b–31; parallels Matthew 26:30b–35; Luke 22:39. John 15:1–17:25.
After departing from the Upper Room, Jesus and his disciples left the city of Jerusalem and walked up the “Kidron” Valley on their way to Gethsemane. The Qidron featured a landfill, prominent tombs, vineyards, and an olive grove called Gethsemane. John gives us many additional insights into what was said by Jesus in that valley on that night, including: how Jesus is the True Vine; the importance of love; how the world would hate and reject the disciples; the work of the Spirit; his imminent departure; the peace and love of the Father; and his great Intercessory Prayer.
Jesus and his disciples leave for the Mount of Olives
Mark 14:26b: 26bthey went out into the mount of Olives.
Matthew 26:30b: 30bthey went out into the mount of Olives.
Luke 22:39: 39And he came out, and went, as he was wont, to the mount of Olives; and his disciples also followed him.
Peter’s Denial foretold in Mark and Matthew
Again, see Huntsman, “The Accounts of Peter’s Denial: Understanding the Texts and Motifs.”
Mark 14:27–31: 27And Jesus saith unto them, “All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, ‘I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered.’ 28But after that I am risen, I will go before you into Galilee.” 29But Peter said unto him, ‘Although all shall be offended, yet will not I.’ 30And Jesus saith unto him, “Verily I say unto thee, That this day, even in this night, before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny me thrice.” 31But he spake the more vehemently, “If I should die with thee, I will not deny thee in any wise.” Likewise also said they all.
Matthew 26:31–35: 31Then saith Jesus unto them, “All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, ‘I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock shall be scattered abroad.’ 32But after I am risen again, I will go before you into Galilee.” 33Peter answered and said unto him, “Though all men shall be offended because of thee, yet will I never be offended.” 34Jesus said unto him, “Verily I say unto thee, That this night, before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice.” 35Peter said unto him, “Though I should die with thee, yet will I not deny thee.” Likewise also said all the disciples.
Jesus the True Vine
John 15:1–11: 1”I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. 2Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth [Greek, kathairei, “prune”] it, that it may bring forth more fruit. 3Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you. 4Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. 5I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. 6If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. 7If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. 8Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples. 9As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love. 10If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love. 11These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.”
No Greater Love
John 15:12–17: 12”This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you. 13Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. 14Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you. 15Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you. “
16”Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained [Greek, ethēka, “appoint, establish”] you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you. 17These things I command you, that ye love one another.”
The Hatred of the World
John 15:18–25: 18”If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. 19If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. 20Remember the word that I said unto you, ‘The servant is not greater than his lord.’ If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also. 21But all these things will they do unto you for my name’s sake, because they know not him that sent me. 22If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloke for their sin. 23He that hateth me hateth my Father also. 24If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father. 25But this cometh to pass, that the word might be fulfilled that is written in their law, They hated me without a cause.”
The Spirit as Witness (Third Paraclete Saying)
John 15:26–27: 26”But when the Comforter [Greek, paraklētos, “Helper,” “Advocate”] is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me: 27And ye also shall bear witness, because ye have been with me from the beginning.”
More Hatred of the World
John 16:1–4: 1”These things have I spoken unto you, that ye should not be offended. 2They shall put you out of the synagogues: yea, the time cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that he doeth God service. 3And these things will they do unto you, because they have not known the Father, nor me. 4But these things have I told you, that when the time shall come, ye may remember that I told you of them. And these things I said not unto you at the beginning, because I was with you.”
The Work of the Spirit (Fourth and Fifth Paraclete Sayings)
John 16:5–15: 5”But now I go my way to him that sent me; and none of you asketh me,Whither goest thou?’ 6But because I have said these things unto you, sorrow hath filled your heart. 7Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter [Greek, paraklētos, “Helper,” “Advocate”] will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. 8And when he is come, he will reprove [Greek, elenxei, “convict, convince”] the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: 9Of sin, because they believe not on me; 10Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more; 11Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.
12”I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now. 13Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. 14He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you. 15All things that the Father hath are mine: therefore said I, that he shall take of mine, and shall shew it unto you.”
Christ’s Departure: Sorrow Will Turn to Joy
John 16:16–24: 16”A little while, and ye shall not see me: and again, a little while, and ye shall see me, because I go to the Father.” 17Then said some of his disciples among themselves, “What is this that he saith unto us, A little while, and ye shall not see me: and again, a little while, and ye shall see me: and, Because I go to the Father?” 18They said therefore, “What is this that he saith, ‘A little while?’ we cannot tell what he saith.” 19Now Jesus knew that they were desirous to ask him, and said unto them, “Do ye enquire among yourselves of that I said, ‘A little while, and ye shall not see me: and again, a little while, and ye shall see me?’ 20Verily, verily, I say unto you, That ye shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice: and ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy. 21A woman when she is in travail hath sorrow, because her hour is come: but as soon as she is delivered of the child, she remembereth no more the anguish, for joy that a man is born into the world. 22And ye now therefore have sorrow: but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice, and your joy no man taketh from you.
23”And in that day ye shall ask me nothing. Verily, verily, I say unto you, ‘Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you.’ 24Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full.”
Peace and the Love of the Father
John 16:25–33: 25”These things have I spoken unto you in proverbs [Greek, paroimiais, “figurative saying”]: but the time cometh, when I shall no more speak unto you in proverbs, but I shall shew you plainly of the Father. 26At that day ye shall ask in my name: and I say not unto you, that I will pray the Father for you: 27For the Father himself loveth you, because ye have loved me, and have believed that I came out from God. 28I came forth from the Father, and am come into the world: again, I leave the world, and go to the Father.”
29His disciples said unto him, “Lo, now speakest thou plainly, and speakest no proverb [Greek, paroimian, “figurative saying”]. 30Now are we sure that thou knowest all things, and needest not that any man should ask thee: by this we believe that thou camest forth from God.” 31Jesus answered them, “Do ye now believe? 32Behold, the hour cometh, yea, is now come, that ye shall be scattered, every man to his own, and shall leave me alone: and yet I am not alone, because the Father is with me. 33These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”
The Great Intercessory Prayer
Jesus’ Prayer for Himself (17:1–6): 1These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, “Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee: 2As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him. 3And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent. 4I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do. 5And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.”
Jesus’ Prayer for Disciples (17:6–19): 6”I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word. 7Now they have known that all things whatsoever thou hast given me are of thee. 8For I have given unto them the words which thou gavest me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that thou didst send me. 9I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine.
10And all mine are thine, and thine are mine; and I am glorified in them.
11”And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are. 12While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled. 13And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves.
14”I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. 15I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil. 16They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. 17Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth. 18As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world. 19And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.”
Prayer for All: Unity and Love (17:20–26): 20”Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; 21That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. 22And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: 23I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.
24”Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world. 25O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee: but I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me. 26And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them.”
AGONY IN THE GARDEN OF GETHSEMANE
Mark 14:32–42; parallels Matthew 26:36–46; Luke 22:40–46. John 18:1.
Mark 14:32 and Matthew 26:26 call the place where Jesus went to pray after the Last Supper “Gethsemane,” whereas Luke 22:40 simply refers to it as “the place.” John 18:1 adds that this spot contained a garden. The Hebrew or Aramaic name Gat-šәmēnānî means “place of the oil press,” and taken with John’s mention of a garden, we can imagine an olive grove with an olive press installation, perhaps in a cave.
Leaving the rest of his disciples presumably Gethsemane, Jesus took Peter James, and John farther inside and asked them to watch with him. Continuing in a bit further on his own, Jesus prayed and suffered in the garden, with this suffering particularly detailed in Luke’s account. Three times he found Peter, James, and John asleep, unable to stay awake with him
Jesus and His Disciples Come to Gethsemane
Mark 14:32–34: 32And they came to a place which was named Gethsemane: and he saith to his disciples, “Sit ye here, while I shall pray.” 33And he taketh with him Peter and James and John, and began to be sore amazed [Greek, ekthambeistai, “thunderstruck,” “utterly astonished], and to be very heavy [Greek, adēmonein, “distressed,” “in great anxiety”];
34And saith unto them, “My soul is exceeding sorrowful unto death: tarry ye here, and watch.”
Matthew 26:36–38: 36Then cometh Jesus with them unto a place called Gethsemane, and saith unto the disciples, “Sit ye here, while I go and pray yonder.” 37And he took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be sorrowful and very heavy. 38Then saith he unto them, “My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me.”
Luke 22:40: 40And when he was at the place, he said unto them, “Pray that ye enter not into temptation” [Greek, peirasmon, “test, “trial”].
John 18:1: 1When Jesus had spoken these words, he went forth with his disciples over the brook Cedron, where was a garden, into the which he entered, and his disciples.
Jesus Prays and Suffers in the Garden
Mark 14:35–36: 35And he went forward a little, and fell on the ground, and prayed that, if it were possible, the hour might pass from him. 36And he said, “Abba, Father, all things are possible unto thee; take away this cup from me: nevertheless not what I will, but what thou wilt.”
Matthew 26:39, 42: 39And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, “O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.”
42He went away again the second time, and prayed, saying, “O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done.”
Luke 22:41–44: 41And he was withdrawn from them about a stone’s cast, and kneeled down, and prayed, 42Saying, “Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.” [[43And there appeared an angel unto him from heaven, strengthening him. 44And being in an agony [Greek, agōniai, the anxiety and anticipation that precedes a contest] he prayed more earnestly: and sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.]]
Jesus Finds Peter, James, and John Sleeping
Mark 14:37–42: 37And he cometh, and findeth them sleeping, and saith unto Peter, “Simon, sleepest thou? couldest not thou watch one hour? 38Watch ye and pray, lest ye enter into temptation [Greek, peirasmon, “test, “trial”]. The spirit truly is ready, but the flesh is weak.” 39And again he went away, and prayed, and spake the same words. 40And when he returned, he found them asleep again, (for their eyes were heavy,) neither wist they what to answer him. 41And he cometh the third time, and saith unto them, “Sleep on now, and take your rest: it is enough, the hour is come; behold, the Son of man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. 42Rise up, let us go; lo, he that betrayeth me is at hand.”
Matthew 26: 40–41, 43–46: 40And he cometh unto the disciples, and findeth them asleep, and saith unto Peter, “What, could ye not watch with me one hour? 41Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation [Greek, peirasmon, “test, “trial”]: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
43And he came and found them asleep again: for their eyes were heavy. 44And he left them, and went away again, and prayed the third time, saying the same words. 45Then cometh he to his disciples, and saith unto them, “Sleep on now, and take your rest [Greek, katheudete to loipon kai anapauesthe, possibly as a question, “are you sleeping and taking your rest?”]: behold, the hour is at hand, and the Son of man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. 46Rise, let us be going: behold, he is at hand that doth betray me.”
Luke 22:45–46: 45And when he rose up from prayer, and was come to his disciples, he found them sleeping for sorrow, 46And said unto them, Why sleep ye? rise and pray, lest ye enter into temptation [Greek, peirasmon, “test, “trial”].
BETRAYAL, ARREST, AND ABANDONMENT AFTER GETHSEMANE
Mark 14:43–52; parallels Matthew 26:47–56; Luke 22:47–53. John 18:2–12.
Judas’ Betrayal and Jesus’ Arrest
Mark 14:43–46: 43And immediately, while he yet spake, cometh Judas, one of the twelve, and with him a great multitude with swords and staves, from the chief priests and the scribes and the elders. 44And he that betrayed him had given them a token, saying, “Whomsoever I shall kiss, that same is he; take him, and lead him away safely.” 45And as soon as he was come, he goeth straightway to him, and saith, “Master, master;” and kissed him. 46And they laid their hands on him, and took him.
Matthew 26:47–50: 47And while he yet spake, lo, Judas, one of the twelve, came, and with him a great multitude with swords and staves, from the chief priests and elders of the people. 48Now he that betrayed him gave them a sign, saying, “Whomsoever I shall kiss, that same is he: hold him fast.” 49And forthwith he came to Jesus, and said, “Hail, master;” and kissed him. 50And Jesus said unto him, “Friend, wherefore art thou come?” Then came they, and laid hands on Jesus, and took him.
Luke 22:47–48: 47And while he yet spake, behold a multitude, and he that was called Judas, one of the twelve, went before them, and drew near unto Jesus to kiss him. 48But Jesus said unto him, “Judas, betrayest thou the Son of man with a kiss?”
John 18:2–9: 2And Judas also, which betrayed him, knew the place: for Jesus ofttimes resorted thither with his disciples. 3Judas then, having received a band [Greek, speiran] of men and officers from the chief priests and Pharisees, cometh thither with lanterns and torches and weapons. 4Jesus therefore, knowing all things that should come upon him, went forth, and said unto them, “Whom seek ye?” 5They answered him, “Jesus of Nazareth.” Jesus saith unto them, “I am he” [Greek, egō eimi]. And Judas also, which betrayed him, stood with them. 6As soon then as he had said unto them, “I am he,” they went backward, and fell to the ground. 7Then asked he them again, “Whom seek ye?” And they said,” Jesus of Nazareth.” 8Jesus answered, “I have told you that I am he: if therefore ye seek me, let these go their way:” 9That the saying might be fulfilled, which he spake, “Of them which thou gavest me have I lost none.”
The High Priest’s Servant and Jesus’ Direction
Mark 14:47–49: 47And one of them that stood by drew a sword, and smote a servant of the high priest, and cut off his ear. 48And Jesus answered and said unto them, “Are ye come out, as against a thief, with swords and with staves to take me? 49I was daily with you in the temple teaching, and ye took me not: but the scriptures must be fulfilled.”
Matthew 26:51–56a: 51And, behold, one of them which were with Jesus stretched out his hand, and drew his sword, and struck a servant of the high priest’s, and smote off his ear. 52Then said Jesus unto him, “Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword. 53Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels? 54But how then shall the scriptures be fulfilled, that thus it must be?” 55In that same hour said Jesus to the multitudes, “Are ye come out as against a thief with swords and staves for to take me? I sat daily with you teaching in the temple, and ye laid no hold on me.” 56aBut all this was done, that the scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled.
Luke 22:49–53: 49When they which were about him saw what would follow, they said unto him, “Lord, shall we smite with the sword?” 50And one of them smote the servant of the high priest, and cut off his right ear. 51And Jesus answered and said, “Suffer ye thus far.” And he touched his ear, and healed him.e 52Then Jesus said unto the chief priests, and captains of the temple, and the elders, which were come to him, “Be ye come out, as against a thief, with swords and staves? 53When I was daily with you in the temple, ye stretched forth no hands against me: but this is your hour, and the power of darkness.”
John 18:10–12: 10Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest’s servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant’s name was Malchus. 11Then said Jesus unto Peter, “Put up thy sword into the sheath: the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?” 12Then the band and the captain and officers of the Jews took Jesus, and bound him . . .
Jesus’ Disciples Abandon Him
Mark 14:50–52: 50And they all forsook him, and fled. 51And there followed him a certain young man, having a linen cloth cast about his naked body; and the young men laid hold on him: 52And he left the linen cloth, and fled from them naked.
Matthew 26:56b: 56bThen all the disciples forsook him, and fled.
JESUS BEFORE THE JEWISH AUTHORITIES AND PETER’S DENIAL
Mark 14:53–72; parallels Matthew 26:57–75; Luke 22:54–71. John 18:13–27.
After Jesus’ arrest at Gethsemane, he was taken presumably back through the Qidron Valley and then into the city, where he was examined before the Jewish authorities. John notes that he was taken first before one of the former Jewish high priests, Annas, who was the father-in-law of the current high priest Caiaphas. He was then taken to the palace of Caiaphas, where the Jewish the Council to find occasion to condemn him. When false witnesses could not agree on the charge that Jesus claimed that he would destroy the temple, Mark and Matthew record that Caiaphas; when Jesus announced that the high priest had spoken correctly, Caiaphas then proclaimed that he had heard blasphemy, and Jesus suffered mocking and physical abuse.
While this questioning was proceeding, in the courts of one or both of these high priests, Peter himself was questioned about his association with Jesus, which led him on three occasions to Denial that he either knew Jesus or was one of his followers.
e The Lucan Jesus, ever compassionate, here heals the high priest’s servant, a detail known only from this gospel.
Annas Questions Jesus
John 18:12–14, 19–24: 12Then the band and the captain and officers of the Jews took Jesus, and bound him, 13And led him away to Annas first; for he was father in law to Caiaphas, which was the high priest that same year. 14Now Caiaphas was he, which gave counsel to the Jews, that it was expedient that one man should die for the people.
19The high priest then asked Jesus of his disciples, and of his doctrine. 20Jesus answered him, “I spake openly to the world; I ever taught in the synagogue, and in the temple, whither the Jews always resort; and in secret have I said nothing. 21Why askest thou me? ask them which heard me, what I have said unto them: behold, they know what I said.” 22And when he had thus spoken, one of the officers which stood by struck Jesus with the palm of his hand, saying, “Answerest thou the high priest so?” 23Jesus answered him, “If I have spoken evil, bear witness of the evil: but if well, why smitest thou me?” 24Now Annas had sent him bound unto Caiaphas the high priest.
Jesus Questioned before the Council
Mark 14:53, 54–65: 53And they led Jesus away to the high priest: and with him were assembled all the chief priests and the elders and the scribes.
55And the chief priests and all the council sought for witness against Jesus to put him to death; and found none. 56For many bare false witness against him, but their witness agreed not together. 57And there arose certain, and bare false witness against him, saying, 58”We heard him say, ‘I will destroy this temple that is made with hands, and within three days I will build another made without hands.’” 59But neither so did their witness agree together.
Matthew 26:57, 59–61: 57And they that had laid hold on Jesus led him away to Caiaphas the high priest, where the scribes and the elders were assembled. 59Now the chief priests, and elders, and all the council, sought false witness against Jesus, to put him to death; 60But found none: yea, though many false witnesses came, yet found they none. At the last came two false witnesses, 61And said, “This fellow said, ‘I am able to destroy the temple of God, and to build it in three days.’”
Luke 22:54a, 66–71: 54aThen took they him, and led him, and brought him into the high priest’s house.
Caiaphas (or the Council) Further Questions Jesus
Mark 14:60–64: 60And the high priest stood up in the midst, and asked Jesus, saying, “Answerest thou nothing? what is it which these witness against thee?” 61But he held his peace, and answered nothing. Again the high priest asked him, and said unto him, “Art thou the Christ, the Son of the Blessed?” 62And Jesus said, “I am: and ye shall see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.” 63Then the high priest rent his clothes, and saith, “What need we any further witnesses? 64Ye have heard the blasphemy: what think ye?” And they all condemned him to be guilty of death.
65And some began to spit on him, and to cover his face, and to buffet him, and to say unto him, “Prophesy:” and the servants did strike him with the palms of their hands.
Matthew 26:62–66: 62And the high priest arose, and said unto him, “Answerest thou nothing? what is it which these witness against thee?” 63But Jesus held his peace. And the high priest answered and said unto him, “I adjure thee by the living God, that thou tell us whether thou be the Christ, the Son of God.” 64Jesus saith unto him, “Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.” 65Then the high priest rent his clothes, saying, “He hath spoken blasphemy; what further need have we of witnesses? behold, now ye have heard his blasphemy. 66What think ye?” They answered and said, “He is guilty of death.”
67Then did they spit in his face, and buffeted him; and others smote him with the palms of their hands, 68Saying, “Prophesy unto us, thou Christ, Who is he that smote thee?”
Luke 22:66–71: 66And as soon as it was day, the elders of the people and the chief priests and the scribes came together, and led him into their council, saying, 67”Art thou the Christ? tell us.” And he said unto them, “If I tell you, ye will not believe: 68And if I also ask you, ye will not answer me, nor let me go. 69Hereafter shall the Son of man sit on the right hand of the power of God.” 70Then said they all, “Art thou then the Son of God?” And he said unto them, “Ye say that I am.” 71And they said, “What need we any further witness? for we ourselves have heard of his own mouth.”
Peter’s First Denial
Again, see Huntsman, “The Accounts of Peter’s Denial: Understanding the Texts and Motifs.”
Mark 15:54, 66–68a: 54And Peter followed him afar off, even into the palace of the high priest: and he sat with the servants, and warmed himself at the fire.
66And as Peter was beneath in the palace, there cometh one of the maids of the high priest: 67And when she saw Peter warming himself, she looked upon him, and said, “And thou also wast with Jesus of Nazareth.” 68aBut he denied, saying, “I know not, neither understand I what thou sayest.”
Matthew 26:58, 69–70: 58But Peter followed him afar off unto the high priest’s palace, and went in, and sat with the servants, to see the end.
69Now Peter sat without in the palace: and a damsel came unto him, saying, “Thou also wast with Jesus of Galilee.” 70But he denied before them all, saying, “I know not what thou sayest.”
Luke 22:54b–57: 54bAnd Peter followed afar off. 55And when they had kindled a fire in the midst of the hall, and were set down together, Peter sat down among them. 56But a certain maid beheld him as he sat by the fire, and earnestly looked upon him, and said, “This man was also with him.” 57And he denied him, saying, “Woman, I know him not.”
John 18:15–17: 15And Simon Peter followed Jesus, and so did another disciple: that disciple was known unto the high priest [here, Annas], and went in with Jesus into the palace of the high priest. 16But Peter stood at the door without. Then went out that other disciple, which was known unto the high priest, and spake unto her that kept the door, and brought in Peter. 17Then saith the damsel that kept the door unto Peter, “Art not thou also one of this man’s disciples?” He saith, “I am not.”
Peter’s Second Denial
Mark 15:68b–70a: 68bAnd he went out into the porch; and the cock crew. 69And a maid saw him again, and began to say to them that stood by, “This is one of them.” 70aAnd he denied it again.
Matthew 26:71–72: 71And when he was gone out into the porch, another maid saw him, and said unto them that were there, “This fellow was also with Jesus of Nazareth.” 72And again he denied with an oath, “I do not know the man.”
Luke 22:58: 58And after a little while another saw him, and said, “Thou art also of them.” And Peter said, “Man, I am not.”
John 18:18, 25: 18And the servants and officers stood there, who had made a fire of coals; for it was cold: and they warmed themselves: and Peter stood with them, and warmed himself.
25And Simon Peter stood and warmed himself. They said therefore unto him, “Art not thou also one of his disciples?” He denied it, and said, “I am not.”
Peter’s Third Denial
Mark 15:70b–72: 70bAnd a little after, they that stood by said again to Peter, “Surely thou art one of them: for thou art a Galilaean, and thy speech agreeth thereto.” 71But he began to curse and to swear, saying, “I know not this man of whom ye speak.” 72And the second time the cock crew. And Peter called to mind the word that Jesus said unto him, “Before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny me thrice.” And when he thought thereon, he wept.
Matthew 26:73–75: 73And after a while came unto him they that stood by, and said to Peter, “Surely thou also art one of them; for thy speech bewrayeth thee.” 74Then began he to curse and to swear, saying, “I know not the man.” And immediately the cock crew. 75And Peter remembered the word of Jesus, which said unto him, “Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice.” And he went out, and wept bitterly.
Luke 22:59–62: 59And about the space of one hour after another confidently affirmed, saying, “Of a truth this fellow also was with him: for he is a Galilaean.” 60And Peter said, Man, “I know not what thou sayest.” And immediately, while he yet spake, the cock crew. 61And the Lord turned, and looked upon Peter. And Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how he had said unto him, “Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice.” 62And Peter went out, and wept bitterly.
John 18:26–27: 26One of the servants of the high priest, being his kinsman whose ear Peter cut off, saith, “Did not I see thee in the garden with him?” 27Peter then denied again: and immediately the cock crew.
Customarily the day Jesus died on the cross is called “Good Friday” in English, either because it is a “holy” Friday, or, more likely, because in English “good” is often an archaic expression for “God.” For instance, “goodbye” means “go with God.” Accordingly, the Friday before Easter is “God’s Friday” because this day saw the culmination of God’s efforts to reconcile the world to himself through the death of his Son. The apostle Paul described it this way:
But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement. (Romans 5:8–12).
The gospel narratives all agree that Jesus was first tried before Pilate, the Roman governor. Luke adds that he was also questioned by Herod Antipas, the client ruler of Galilee. During his trial and after his conviction, Jesus was mocked and physically abused before being led to the place of crucifixion, where, after hanging on the cross for three to six hours, he died. He was then hastily buried in a borrowed tomb. See God So Loved the World, 71–93.
JESUS IN THE HANDS OF THE ROMANS
First Interview with Pilate
Mark 15:1–5; parallels Matthew 27:1–2, 11–14; Luke 23:1–5. John 18:28–38a.
The morning after Jesus’ arrest, he was taken by the Jewish chief priests and rulers to the Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor. The governor’s palace was the scene of a series of episodes (nos. 13, 15–16, 18–19) in which Jesus was questioned, falsely judged, condemned, and abused. In this first episode, Mark 15:1–6, followed by Matthew 27: 1–14 and Luke 23:1–5, Jesus is first interviewed by Pilate and asked whether he claimed to be the King of the Jews. John recounts a much more detailed scene in which Jesus is first accused by the Jewish leaders outside of the governor’s palace and then taken inside for a private interview with Pilate, where the governor asked him not only about the political charge but also about the nature of truth.
Mark 15:1–5: 1And straightway in the morning the chief priests held a consultation with the elders and scribes and the whole council, and bound Jesus, and carried him away, and delivered him to Pilate. 2And Pilate asked him, “Art thou the King of the Jews?” And he answering said unto him, “Thou sayest it.” 3And the chief priests accused him of many things: but he answered nothing. 4And Pilate asked him again, saying, “Answerest thou nothing? behold how many things they witness against thee.” 5But Jesus yet answered nothing; so that Pilate marvelled. (Mark 15:1–5)
Matthew 27:1–2, 11–14: 1When the morning was come, all the chief priests and elders of the people took counsel against Jesus to put him to death: 2And when they had bound him, they led him away, and delivered him to Pontius Pilate the governor.
11And Jesus stood before the governor: and the governor asked him, saying, “Art thou the King of the Jews?” And Jesus said unto him, “Thou sayest.” 12And when he was accused of the chief priests and elders, he answered nothing. 13Then said Pilate unto him, “Hearest thou not how many things they witness against thee?” 14And he answered him to never a word; insomuch that the governor marvelled greatly.
Luke 23:1–5: 1And the whole multitude of them arose, and led him unto Pilate. 2And they began to accuse him, saying, “We found this fellow perverting the nation, and forbidding to give tribute to Caesar, saying that he himself is Christ a King.” 3And Pilate asked him, saying, “Art thou the King of the Jews?” And he answered him and said, “Thou sayest it.” 4Then said Pilate to the chief priests and to the people, “I find no fault in this man.” 5And they were the more fierce, saying, “He stirreth up the people, teaching throughout all Jewry, beginning from Galilee to this place.”
John 18:28–38a: 28Then led they Jesus from Caiaphas unto the hall of judgment [Greek, eis to praitōrion]: and it was early; and they themselves went not into the judgment hall judgment [Greek, eis to praitōrion], lest they should be defiled; but that they might eat the passover. 29Pilate then went out unto them, and said, “What accusation bring ye against this man?” 30They answered and said unto him, “If he were not a malefactor, we would not have delivered him up unto thee.” 31Then said Pilate unto them, “Take ye him, and judge him according to your law. The Jews therefore said unto him, It is not lawful for us to put any man to death:” 32That the saying of Jesus might be fulfilled, which he spake, signifying what death he should die.
33Then Pilate entered into the judgment hall judgment [Greek, eis to praitōrion] again, and called Jesus, and said unto him, “Art thou the King of the Jews?” 34Jesus answered him, “Sayest thou this thing of thyself, or did others tell it thee of me?” 35Pilate answered, “Am I a Jew? Thine own nation and the chief priests have delivered thee unto me: what hast thou done?” 36Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence.” 37Pilate therefore said unto him, “Art thou a king then?” Jesus answered, “Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice.” 38aPilate saith unto him, “What is truth?”
Interview with Herod Antipas.
Only Luke includes the interview with Herod, who in this instance is Herod Antipas, the son of Herod the Great and the tetrarch of Galilee and Perea. This creates a parallel with the later experience of the apostle Paul, who was also tried before a Roman governor, Festus, but who was also questioned by a Herodian prince, in Paul’s case Herod Agrippa II. Antipas, as the ruler of Galilee, was familiar with the preaching and miracle-working reputation of Jesus but had not seen or heard him before this time. Although Antipas questioned Jesus and the chief priests accused him before the tetrarch, Jesus never spoke to Antipas, who sent him back to Pilate dressed in a “gorgeous,” or shining, clean robe.
Luke 23:6–12: 6When Pilate heard of Galilee, he asked whether the man were a Galilaean. 7And as soon as he knew that he belonged unto Herod’s jurisdiction, he sent him to Herod, who himself also was at Jerusalem at that time. 8And when Herod saw Jesus, he was exceeding glad: for he was desirous to see him of a long season, because he had heard many things of him; and he hoped to have seen some miracle done by him. 9Then he questioned with him in many words; but he answered him nothing. 10And the chief priests and scribes stood and vehemently accused him. 11And Herod with his men of war set him at nought, and mocked him, and arrayed him in a gorgeous [Greek, lampran, “clean,” “shining”] robe, and sent him again to Pilate. 12And the same day Pilate and Herod were made friends together: for before they were at enmity between themselves.
Pilate Presents Jesus and Barabbas to the Crowd.
Mark 15:6–14; parallels Matthew 27:15–23; Luke 23:13–23. John 18:38b–40.
After Luke’s account of Jesus’ interview with Herod Antipas (Luke 23:6–12; see event no. 14), Pilate presented Jesus to the crowd that had gathered outside the Praetorium and offered to release him in accordance with an apparent custom that allowed the governor to release a prisoner in connection with the Passover festival. Given a choice between Jesus and a well-known robber or revolutionary named Barabbas, the crowd, encouraged by the Jewish chief priests and rulers, chose Barabbas.
Mark 15:6–14: 6Now at that feast he released unto them one prisoner, whomsoever they desired. 7And there was one named Barabbas, which lay bound with them that had made insurrection with him, who had committed murder in the insurrection. 8And the multitude crying aloud began to desire him to do as he had ever done unto them. 9But Pilate answered them, saying, “Will ye that I release unto you the King of the Jews?” 10For he knew that the chief priests had delivered him for envy. 11But the chief priests moved the people, that he should rather release Barabbas unto them. 12And Pilate answered and said again unto them, “What will ye then that I shall do unto him whom ye call the King of the Jews?” 13And they cried out again, “Crucify him.” 14Then Pilate said unto them, “Why, what evil hath he done?” And they cried out the more exceedingly, “Crucify him.” 15And so Pilate, willing to content the people, released Barabbas unto them, and delivered Jesus, when he had scourged him, to be crucified.
Matthew 27:15–23: 15Now at that feast the governor was wont to release unto the people a prisoner, whom they would. 16And they had then a notable prisoner, called Barabbas. 17Therefore when they were gathered together, Pilate said unto them, “Whom will ye that I release unto you? Barabbas, or Jesus which is called Christ?” 18For he knew that for envy they had delivered him. 19When he was set down on the judgment seat [epi tou bēmatos], his wife sent unto him, saying, “Have thou nothing to do with that just man: for I have suffered many things this day in a dream because of him.” 20But the chief priests and elders persuaded the multitude that they should ask Barabbas, and destroy Jesus. 21The governor answered and said unto them, “Whether of the twain will ye that I release unto you?” They said, “Barabbas.” 22Pilate saith unto them, “What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ?” They all say unto him, “Let him be crucified.” 23And the governor said, “Why, what evil hath he done?” But they cried out the more, saying, “Let him be crucified.”
Luke 23:13–23: 13And Pilate, when he had called together the chief priests and the rulers and the people, 14Said unto them, “Ye have brought this man unto me, as one that perverteth the people: and, behold, I, having examined him before you, have found no fault in this man touching those things whereof ye accuse him: 15No, nor yet Herod: for I sent you to him; and, lo, nothing worthy of death is done unto him. 16I will therefore chastise him, and release him.” 17(For of necessity he must release one unto them at the feast.) 18And they cried out all at once, saying, “Away with this man, and release unto us Barabbas:” 19(Who for a certain sedition made in the city, and for murder, was cast into prison.) 20Pilate therefore, willing to release Jesus, spake again to them. 21But they cried, saying, “Crucify him, crucify him.” 22And he said unto them the third time, “Why, what evil hath he done? I have found no cause of death in him: I will therefore chastise him, and let him go.” 23And they were instant with loud voices, requiring that he might be crucified. And the voices of them and of the chief priests prevailed.
John 18:38b–40: 38bAnd when he had said this, he went out again unto the Jews, and saith unto them, “I find in him no fault at all. 39But ye have a custom, that I should release unto you one at the passover: will ye therefore that I release unto you the King of the Jews?” 40Then cried they all again, saying, “Not this man, but Barabbas.” Now Barabbas was a robber [Greek, lēistēs, “bandit,” “brigand”; also “insurgent,” “insurrectionist”].
Jesus Scourged and Presented to the Crowd for the Final Time; Pilate Again Interviews Him and Then Passes Sentence.
John’s account provides more details about some aspects of the Roman trial of Jesus. First, it notes that Pilate had Jesus Scourged before his final presentation to the crowd. While some details, such as the crown of thorns, the dressing in the purple robe, and the smiting are repeated in Mark and Matthew after Jesus is formally sentenced (see Mark 15:16–20; Matthew 27:27–31; event no. 19), in John they seem to have served the purpose of trying to elicit sympathy from the crowd when Jesus is Behold to them one last time. When the crowd, or at least the Jewish leaders, insist that Jesus should be executed because he claimed to be the Son of God, Pilate became afraid and interviewed him one more time, Release. Threatened by the Jewish leaders with looking disloyal to Caesar if he released Jesus, Pilate Release and prepared to deliver Jesus over for crucifixion.
Jesus Scourged and Mocked
John 19:1–3: 1Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and scourged [Greek, emastigōsen] him. 2And the soldiers platted a crown of thorns, and put it on his head, and they put on him a purple robe, 3And said, “Hail, King of the Jews!” and they smote him with their hands.
“Behold the Man”
John 19:4–16: 4Pilate therefore went forth again, and saith unto them, “Behold, I bring him forth to you, that ye may know that I find no fault in him.” 5Then came Jesus forth, wearing the crown of thorns, and the purple robe [Greek, himation porphyroun]. And Pilate saith unto them, “Behold the man” [Latin, Ecce homo]! 6When the chief priests therefore and officers saw him, they cried out, saying, “Crucify him, crucify him.” Pilate saith unto them, “Take ye him, and crucify him: for I find no fault in him.”7The Jews answered him, “We have a law, and by our law he ought to die, because he made himself the Son of God.” 8When Pilate therefore heard that saying, he was the more afraid;
Pilate Again Interviews Jesus and Seeks to Release Him
9And went again into the judgment hall, and saith unto Jesus, “Whence art thou?” But Jesus gave him no answer. 10Then saith Pilate unto him, “Speakest thou not unto me? knowest thou not that I have power to crucify thee, and have power to release thee?” 11Jesus answered, “Thou couldest have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from above: therefore he that delivered me unto thee hath the greater sin.” 12And from thenceforth Pilate sought to release him: but the Jews cried out, saying, “If thou let this man go, thou art not Caesar’s friend: whosoever maketh himself a king speaketh against Caesar.”
Pilate Take the Judgment Seat
13When Pilate therefore heard that saying, he brought Jesus forth, and sat down in the judgment seat [Greek, epi tou bēmatos] in a place that is called the Pavement [Greek, lithostrōton], but in the Hebrew, Gabbatha. 14And it was the preparation of the passover, and about the sixth hour: and he saith unto the Jews, “Behold your King!” 15But they cried out, “Away with him, away with him, crucify him.” Pilate saith unto them, “Shall I crucify your King?” The chief priests answered, “We have no king but Caesar.”
Judas hangs himself, buried in “Potter’s Field”
Matthew 27:3–10; cf. Acts 1:16–20.
Matthew 27:3–10: 3Then Judas, which had betrayed him, when he saw that he was condemned, repented himself, and brought again the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders, 4Saying, “I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood.” And they said, “What is that to us? see thou to that.” 5And he cast down the pieces of silver in the temple, and departed, and went and hanged himself. 6And the chief priests took the silver pieces, and said, “It is not lawful for to put them into the treasury, because it is the price of blood.” 7And they took counsel, and bought with them the potter’s field, to bury strangers in. 8Wherefore that field was called, The field of blood, unto this day. 9Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying, “And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him that was valued, whom they of the children of Israel did value;” 10And gave them for the potter’s field, as the Lord appointed me.
Compare to Acts 1:16–20: 16Men and brethren, this scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus. 17For he was numbered with us, and had obtained part of this ministry. 18Now this man purchased a field with the reward of iniquity; and falling headlong, he burst asunder in the midst, and all his bowels gushed out. 19And it was known unto all the dwellers at Jerusalem; insomuch as that field is called in their proper tongue, Aceldama, that is to say, The field of blood. 20For it is written in the book of Psalms, “Let his habitation be desolate, and let no man dwell therein: and his bishoprick [episkopēn, “position,” “overseership”] let another take.” (Act 1:16-20 KJV)
Pilate Delivers Jesus to be Crucified.
Mark 15:15; Matthew 27:24–26; Luke 23:24–25; John 19:16.
Mark 15:15: 15And so Pilate, willing to content the people, released Barabbas unto them, and delivered Jesus, when he had scourged [Greek, phragellōsas] him, to be crucified.
Matthew 27:24–26: 24When Pilate saw that he could prevail nothing, but that rather a tumult was made, he took water, and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, “I am innocent of the blood of this just person: see ye to it.” 25Then answered all the people, and said, “His blood be on us, and on our children.” 26 Then released he Barabbas unto them: and when he had scourged [Greek, phragellōsas] Jesus, he delivered him to be crucified.
Luke 23:24–25: 24And Pilate gave sentence [Greek, epikrinen] that it should be as they required. 25And he released unto them him that for sedition and murder was cast into prison, whom they had desired; but he delivered Jesus to their will.
John 19:16: 16Then delivered he him therefore unto them to be crucified. And they took Jesus, and led him away
Roman Soldiers Mock Jesus.
Mark 15:16–20; Matthew 27:27–31.
Mark 15:16–20: 16And the soldiers led him away into the hall, called Praetorium [praitōrion]; and they call together the whole band. 17And they clothed him with purple, and platted a crown of thorns, and put it about his head, 18And began to salute him, “Hail, King of the Jews!” 19And they smote him on the head with a reed, and did spit upon him, and bowing their knees worshipped him. 20And when they had mocked him, they took off the purple [Greek, porphyra] from him, and put his own clothes on him, and led him out to crucify him. (Mark 15:16–20)
Matthew 27:27–31: 27Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the common hall [praitōrion];, and gathered unto him the whole band of soldiers. 28And they stripped him, and put on him a scarlet robe [Greek, chlamys kokkinē]. 29And when they had platted a crown of thorns, they put it upon his head, and a reed in his right hand: and they bowed the knee before him, and mocked him, saying, “Hail, King of the Jews!” 30And they spit upon him, and took the reed, and smote him on the head. 31And after that they had mocked him, they took the robe off from him, and put his own raiment on him, and led him away to crucify him.
Jesus’ Path to Golgotha
Mark 15:21; Matthew 27:32; Luke 23:26–32; John 19:17.
After Pilate delivers Jesus to be crucified, Mark, followed by Matthew and Luke, records that the soldiers compelled a bystander, one Simon, to carry Jesus’ cross. Perhaps to symbolize that Jesus accomplished his sacrificial death on his own, John omits this detail and describes Jesus carrying the cross by himself. Along the route, Luke adds that Jesus spoke to the lamenting women.
Simon Carries the Cross
Mark 15:21–22: 21And they compel one Simon a Cyrenian, who passed by, coming out of the country, the father of Alexander and Rufus, to bear his cross.
Matthew 27:32–33: 32And as they came out, they found a man of Cyrene, Simon by name: him they compelled to bear his cross.
Luke 23:26–32: 26And as they led him away, they laid hold upon one Simon, a Cyrenian, coming out of the country, and on him they laid the cross, that he might bear it after Jesus.
Jesus Carries His Own Cross
John 19:17: 17And he bearing his cross went forth into a place called the place of a skull, which is called in the Hebrew Golgotha:
Jesus’ Words to the Lamenting Women
Luke 23:27‒32: 27And there followed him a great company of people, and of women, which also bewailed and lamented him. 28But Jesus turning unto them said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, weep not for me, but weep for yourselves, and for your children. 29For, behold, the days are coming, in the which they shall say, ‘Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bare, and the paps which never gave suck.’ 30Then shall they begin to say to the mountains, ‘Fall on us;’ and to the hills, ‘Cover us.’ 31For if they do these things in a green tree, what shall be done in the dry?”
32And there were also two other, malefactors, led with him to be put to death.
Jesus Is Crucified at Golgotha
Mark 15:22–28; parallels Matthew 27:33–38; Luke 23:33–34, 38. John 19:17‒24.
On the significance and meaning of the cross—and its use or absence from LDS practice—see Robert L. Millet, “What Happened to the Cross?,” in What Happened to the Cross? (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2007); Michael G. Reed, Banishing the Cross: The Emergence of a Mormon Taboo (John Whitmer Books, 2012); Gaye Strathearn, “Christ’s Crucifixion: Reclamation of the Cross,” Religious Educator 14.1 (2013): 45–57; and Eric D. Huntsman, “Preaching Jesus, and Him Crucified,” His Majesty and Mission (Provo, UT: Religious Studies Center; Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2017), 55–76.
Mark 15:22‒28: 22And they bring him unto the place Golgotha, which is, being interpreted, “The place of a skull.” 23And they gave him to drink wine mingled with myrrh: but he received it not. 24And when they had crucified him, they parted his garments, casting lots upon them, what every man should take. 25And it was the third hour, and they crucified him. 26And the superscription of his accusation was written over, THE KING OF THE JEWS. 27And with him they crucify two thieves; the one on his right hand, and the other on his left. [[28And the scripture was fulfilled, which saith, “And he was numbered with the transgressors.”[missing in some mss.]]]
Matthew 27:33‒38: 33And when they were come unto a place called Golgotha, that is to say, a place of a skull, 34They gave him vinegar to drink mingled with gall: and when he had tasted thereof, he would not drink. 35And they crucified him, and parted his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet,
They parted my garments among them,
and upon my vesture did they cast lots.[Psalm 22:18]
36And sitting down they watched him there; 37And set up over his head his accusation written, THIS IS JESUS THE KING OF THE JEWS. 38Then were there two thieves crucified with him, one on the right hand, and another on the left.
Luke 23:33‒34, 38: 33And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary [Greek, ton topon ton kaloumenon Kranion], there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the other on the left. 34Then said Jesus, “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.” And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.
38And a superscription also was written over him in letters of Greek, and Latin, and Hebrew, THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS.
John 19:17‒24: 17And he bearing his cross went forth into a place called the place of a skull, which is called in the Hebrew Golgotha: 18Where they crucified him, and two other with him, on either side one, and Jesus in the midst.
19And Pilate wrote a title, and put it on the cross. And the writing was, JESUS OF NAZARETH THE KING OF THE JEWS. 20This title then read many of the Jews: for the place where Jesus was crucified was nigh to the city: and it was written in Hebrew, and Greek, and Latin. 21Then said the chief priests of the Jews to Pilate, “Write not, The King of the Jews; but that he said, ‘I am King of the Jews.’” Pilate answered, “What I have written I have written.”
23Then the soldiers, when they had crucified Jesus, took his garments, and made four parts, to every soldier a part; and also his coat: now the coat was without seam, woven from the top throughout. 24They said therefore among themselves, Let us not rend it, but cast lots for it, whose it shall be: that the scripture might be fulfilled, which saith,
They parted my raiment among them,
and for my vesture they did cast lots.[Psalm 22:18]
These things therefore the soldiers did.
Jesus Is Mocked; Luke’s Story of the Repentant Thief.
Mark 15:29–32; parallels Matthew 27:39–44; Luke 23:35–37, 39‒43.
Mark 15:29‒32: 29And they that passed by railed on him, wagging their heads, and saying, Ah, thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days, 30Save thyself, and come down from the cross. 31Likewise also the chief priests mocking said among themselves with the scribes, “He saved others; himself he cannot save. 32Let Christ the King of Israel descend now from the cross, that we may see and believe.” And they that were crucified with him reviled him.
Matthew 27:39‒44: 39And they that passed by reviled him, wagging their heads, 40And saying, “Thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days, save thyself. If thou be the Son of God, come down from the cross.” 41Likewise also the chief priests mocking him, with the scribes and elders, said, 42”He saved others; himself he cannot save. If he be the King of Israel, let him now come down from the cross, and we will believe him. 43He trusted in God; let him deliver him now, if he will have him: for he said, ‘I am the Son of God.’” 44The thieves also, which were crucified with him, cast the same in his teeth.
Luke 23:35‒37, 39‒43: 35And the people stood beholding. And the rulers also with them derided him, saying, “He saved others; let him save himself, if he be Christ, the chosen of God.” 36And the soldiers also mocked him, coming to him, and offering him vinegar, 37And saying, “If thou be the king of the Jews, save thyself.”
39And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, “If thou be Christ, save thyself and us.” 40But the other answering rebuked him, saying, “Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation? 41And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this man hath done nothing amiss.” 42And he said unto Jesus, “Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom.” 43And Jesus said unto him, “Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise” [Greek, paradeisōi, JST “the world of spirits”].
Jesus’ Last Moments and Words
Mark 15:33–36; parallels Matthew 27:45–49; Luke 23:44–45. John 19:25‒29.
Mark 15:33‒36: 33And when the sixth hour was come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour. 34And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” 35And some of them that stood by, when they heard it, said, “Behold, he calleth Elias.” 36And one ran and filled a spunge full of vinegar, and put it on a reed, and gave him to drink, saying, “Let alone; let us see whether Elias will come to take him down.”
Matthew 27:45‒49: 45Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour. 46And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” 47Some of them that stood there, when they heard that, said, “This man calleth for Elias.” 48And straightway one of them ran, and took a spunge, and filled it with vinegar, and put it on a reed, and gave him to drink. 49The rest said, “Let be, let us see whether Elias will come to save him.”
Luke 23:44‒45: 44And it was about the sixth hour, and there was a darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour. 45And the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was rent in the midst.
John 19:25‒29: 25Now there stood by the cross of Jesus his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalene. 26When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, “Woman, behold thy son!” 27Then saith he to the disciple, “Behold thy mother!” And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home.
28After this, Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled, saith, “I thirst.” 29Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a spunge with vinegar, and put it upon hyssop, and put it to his mouth.
Mark 15:37–39; parallels Matthew 27:50–54; Luke 23:46–48. John 19:30.
Mark 15:37‒39: 37And Jesus cried with a loud voice, and gave up the ghost. 38And the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom. 39And when the centurion, which stood over against him, saw that he so cried out, and gave up the ghost, he said, “Truly this man was the Son of God.”
Matthew 27:50‒54: 50Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost. 51And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent; 52And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose, 53And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many. 54Now when the centurion, and they that were with him, watching Jesus, saw the earthquake, and those things that were done, they feared greatly, saying, “Truly this was the Son of God.”
Luke 23:46‒48: 46And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, “Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit:” and having said thus, he gave up the ghost. 47Now when the centurion saw what was done, he glorified God, saying, “Certainly this was a righteous man.” 48And all the people that came together to that sight, beholding the things which were done, smote their breasts, and returned.
John 19:30: 30When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, “It is finished” [Greek, tetelestai]: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.
Jesus’ Side Is Pierced: The Sign of Blood and Water
For the symbolism of blood and water in the Gospel of John, see Eric D. Huntsman, “And the Word Was Made Flesh: An LDS Exegesis of the Blood and Water Imagery in John,” Studies in the Bible and Antiquity 1 (2009), 51–65.
John 19:31‒37: 31The Jews therefore, because it was the preparation, that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the sabbath day, (for that sabbath day was an high day,) besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away. 32Then came the soldiers, and brake the legs of the first, and of the other which was crucified with him. 33But when they came to Jesus, and saw that he was dead already, they brake not his legs: 34But one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith came there out blood and water.
35And he that saw it bare record, and his record is true: and he knoweth that he saith true, that ye might believe. 36For these things were done, that the scripture should be fulfilled, “A bone of him shall not be broken.”[Exodus 12:46; Numbers 9:12; Psalm 34:20] 37And again another scripture saith, “They shall look on him whom they pierced.”[Zechariah 12:10]
The Witness of the Women
Mark 15:40‒41; parallels Matthew 27:55‒56; Luke 23:49.
Mark 15:40‒41: 40There were also women looking on afar off: among whom was Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James the less and of Joses, and Salome; 41(Who also, when he was in Galilee, followed him, and ministered unto him;) and many other women which came up with him unto Jerusalem.
Matthew 27:55‒56: 55And many women were there beholding afar off, which followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering unto him: 56Among which was Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James and Joses, and the mother of Zebedee’s children.
Luke 23:49: 49And all his acquaintance, and the women that followed him from Galilee, stood afar off, beholding these things.
THE BURIAL OF JESUS
Mark 15:42–47; parallels Matthew 27:57–66; Luke 23:50–56. John 19:38–42.
Joseph of Arimathea Receives Permission to Bury Jesus
Mark 15:42–45: 42And now when the even was come, because it was the preparation, that is, the day before the sabbath, 43Joseph of Arimathaea, an honourable counsellor, which also waited for the kingdom of God, came, and went in boldly unto Pilate, and craved the body of Jesus. 44And Pilate marvelled if he were already dead: and calling unto him the centurion, he asked him whether he had been any while dead. 45And when he knew it of the centurion, he gave the body to Joseph.
Matthew 27:57–58: 57When the even was come, there came a rich man of Arimathaea, named Joseph, who also himself was Jesus’ disciple: 58He went to Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus. Then Pilate commanded the body to be delivered.
Luke :23:50–52: 50And, behold, there was a man named Joseph, a counsellor; and he was a good man, and a just: 51(The same had not consented to the counsel and deed of them;) he was of Arimathaea, a city of the Jews: who also himself waited for the kingdom of God. 52This man went unto Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus.
John 19:38: 38And after this Joseph of Arimathaea, being a disciple of Jesus, but secretly for fear of the Jews, besought Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus: and Pilate gave him leave. He came therefore, and took the body of Jesus.
Jesus’ Body Placed in Joseph’s Tomb; The Women See Where the Body Was Laid
Mark 15:46–47: 46And he bought fine linen, and took him down, and wrapped him in the linen, and laid him in a sepulchre which was hewn out of a rock, and rolled a stone unto the door of the sepulchre. 47And Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses beheld where he was laid.
Matthew 27:59–61: 59And when Joseph had taken the body, he wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, 60And laid it in his own new tomb, which he had hewn out in the rock: and he rolled a great stone to the door of the sepulchre, and departed. 61And there was Mary Magdalene, and the other Mary, sitting over against the sepulchre.
Luke 23:53–56: 53And he took it down, and wrapped it in linen, and laid it in a sepulchre that was hewn in stone, wherein never man before was laid. 54And that day was the preparation, and the sabbath drew on. 55And the women also, which came with him from Galilee, followed after, and beheld the sepulchre, and how his body was laid. 56And they returned, and prepared spices and ointments; and rested the sabbath day according to the commandment.
John 19:39–42: 39And there came also Nicodemus, which at the first came to Jesus by night, and brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about an hundred pound weight. 40Then took they the body of Jesus, and wound it in linen clothes with the spices, as the manner of the Jews is to bury. 41Now in the place where he was crucified there was a garden; and in the garden a new sepulchre, wherein was never man yet laid. 42There laid they Jesus therefore because of the Jews’ preparation day; for the sepulchre was nigh at hand.
The only event the gospels record for the day after the crucifixion is the posting of a guard at the tomb at the request of the chief priests and Pharisees (Matthew 27:62–66). Because this was ostensibly Saturday, the Jewish Sabbath, Jesus’ family and friends stayed away from the tomb that day. Nothing else about Jesus’ body in the tomb or the activities of his disciples who were still in Jerusalem is known from those texts, although the Book of Mormon records that darkness prevailed among the Nephites during this period, symbolizing that the Light of the World had left it (see 3 Nephi 9–10). See God So Loved the World, 95–105.
A Guard Set at the Tomb
Matthew 27:62–66: 62Now the next day, that followed the day of the preparation, the chief priests and Pharisees came together unto Pilate, 63Saying, “Sir, we remember that that deceiver said, while he was yet alive, After three days I will rise again. 64Command therefore that the sepulchre be made sure until the third day, lest his disciples come by night, and steal him away, and say unto the people, ‘He is risen from the dead:’ so the last error shall be worse than the first.”
65Pilate said unto them, “Ye have a watch: go your way, make it as sure as ye can.” 66So they went, and made the sepulchre sure, sealing the stone, and setting a watch.
While the body of Jesus was in the tomb, his spirit was nonetheless alive and active. An intriguing notice in 1 Peter 3:18–4:6 alludes to Jesus’ preaching to the dead or “spirits in prison.” Christian tradition relates the so-called “Harrowing of Hell,” wherein Jesus broke the bonds of Adam and Eve and brought them and other Old Testament saints from hell into heaven. Although LDS doctrinal statements do not include statements such as “and he descended into hell” as do the Apostolic and other creeds, Restoration scripture does stress that “he descended below all things” (e.g., D&C 88:6, 122:8).
Scriptural Accounts: Luke 23:43; 1 Peter 3:18–19, 4:6; D&C 138; 3 Nephi 9 and 10
Sunday: The First Easter
The accounts of the resurrection in the four gospels serve as the foundation of our understanding of the rise of our Lord from the tomb. They paint for us a dramatic story as the women found an empty tomb and heard the testimony of angels. The story crescendos as Peter and John confirm that the tomb was empty. First Mary, then the other women, and then two disciples converse with Jesus on the way to Emmaus. Finally, the ten of the remaining eleven apostles see the Risen Lord. These and subsequent appearances confirm that Jesus in fact rose from the dead “with healing in his wings,” and though he ascended again into heaven, the gospels leave us with the assurance that in a very real way he remains here with us. See God So Loved the World, 107–119.
The Women and the Empty Tomb
Mark 16:1–8; parallels Matthew 28:1–15; Luke 24:1–11. John 20:1–2.
Mark 16:1–8: 1And when the sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, had bought sweet spices, that they might come and anoint him. 2And very early in the morning the first day of the week, they came unto the sepulchre at the rising of the sun. 3And they said among themselves, “Who shall roll us away the stone from the door of the sepulchre?” 4And when they looked, they saw that the stone was rolled away: for it was very great. 5And entering into the sepulchre, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, clothed in a long white garment; and they were affrighted. 6And he saith unto them, “Be not affrighted: Ye seek Jesus of Nazareth, which was crucified: he is risen; he is not here: behold the place where they laid him. 7But go your way, tell his disciples and Peter that he goeth before you into Galilee: there shall ye see him, as he said unto you.” 8And they went out quickly, and fled from the sepulchre; for they trembled and were amazed: neither said they any thing to any man; for they were afraid. [SHORT ENDING]
Matthew 28:1–10: 1In the end of the sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre. 2And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it. 3His countenance was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow: 4And for fear of him the keepers did shake, and became as dead men. 5And the angel answered and said unto the women, “Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified. 6He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. 7And go quickly, and tell his disciples that he is risen from the dead; and, behold, he goeth before you into Galilee; there shall ye see him: lo, I have told you.” 8And they departed quickly from the sepulchre with fear and great joy; and did run to bring his disciples word.
9And as they went to tell his disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, “All hail.” And they came and held him by the feet, and worshipped him. 10Then said Jesus unto them, “Be not afraid: go tell my brethren that they go into Galilee, and there shall they see me.”
Luke 24:1–11: 1Now upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulchre, bringing the spices which they had prepared, and certain others with them. 2And they found the stone rolled away from the sepulchre. 3And they entered in, and found not the body of the Lord Jesus. 4And it came to pass, as they were much perplexed thereabout, behold, two men stood by them in shining garments: 5And as they were afraid, and bowed down their faces to the earth, they said unto them, “Why seek ye the living among the dead? 6He is not here, but is risen: remember how he spake unto you when he was yet in Galilee, 7Saying, ‘The Son of man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again.’”
8And they remembered his words, 9And returned from the sepulchre, and told all these things unto the eleven, and to all the rest. 10It was Mary Magdalene, and Joanna, and Mary the mother of James, and other women that were with them, which told these things unto the apostles. 11And their words seemed to them as idle tales, and they believed them not.
Mary Magdalene, Peter, and the Beloved Disciple [John] at the Tomb
Luke 24:12; John 20:1–10; Mark 16:9–11[Longer Ending]
Luke 24:12: 12Then arose Peter, and ran unto the sepulchre; and stooping down, he beheld the linen clothes laid by themselves, and departed, wondering in himself at that which was come to pass.
John 20:1–10: 1The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulchre, and seeth the stone taken away from the sepulchre. 2Then she runneth, and cometh to Simon Peter, and to the other disciple, whom Jesus loved, and saith unto them, “They have taken away the Lord out of the sepulchre, and we know not where they have laid him.”
3Peter therefore went forth, and that other disciple, and came to the sepulchre. 4So they ran both together: and the other disciple did outrun Peter, and came first to the sepulchre. 5And he stooping down, and looking in, saw the linen clothes lying; yet went he not in. 6Then cometh Simon Peter following him, and went into the sepulchre, and seeth the linen clothes lie, 7And the napkin, that was about his head, not lying with the linen clothes, but wrapped together in a place by itself. 8Then went in also that other disciple, which came first to the sepulchre, and he saw, and believed. 9For as yet they knew not the scripture, that he must rise again from the dead. 10Then the disciples went away again unto their own home.
Mark 16:9–11[Longer Ending]: 9Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils. 10And she went and told them that had been with him, as they mourned and wept. 11And they, when they had heard that he was alive, and had been seen of her, believed not.
Mary Magdalene and the Risen Lord
John 20:11–18; parallel, Mark 16:9–11[Longer Ending].
John 20:11–18: 11But Mary stood without at the sepulchre weeping: and as she wept, she stooped down, and looked into the sepulchre, 12And seeth two angels in white sitting, the one at the head, and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain. 13And they say unto her, “Woman, why weepest thou?” She saith unto them, “Because they have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him.”
14And when she had thus said, she turned herself back, and saw Jesus standing, and knew not that it was Jesus. 15Jesus saith unto her, “Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou?” She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, “Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away.” 16Jesus saith unto her, “Mary.” She turned herself, and saith unto him, “Rabboni;” which is to say, Master. 17Jesus saith unto her, “Touch me not [Greek, mē mou haptou, “don’t keep touching me”]; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, ‘I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.’” 18Mary Magdalene came and told the disciples that she had seen the Lord, and that he had spoken these things unto her.
Mark 16:9–11[LONGER ENDING]: 9Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils. 10And she went and told them that had been with him, as they mourned and wept. 11And they, when they had heard that he was alive, and had been seen of her, believed not.
Two Disciples See Jesus near Jerusalem
Luke 24:13–35; parallel, Mark 16:12–13[Longer Ending].
Luke 24:13–35: 13And, behold, two of them went that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was from Jerusalem about threescore furlongs. 14And they talked together of all these things which had happened. 15And it came to pass, that, while they communed together and reasoned, Jesus himself drew near, and went with them. 16But their eyes were holden that they should not know him.
17And he said unto them, “What manner of communications are these that ye have one to another, as ye walk, and are sad?”
18And the one of them, whose name was Cleopas, answering said unto him, “Art thou only a stranger in Jerusalem, and hast not known the things which are come to pass there in these days?” 19And he said unto them, “What things?” And they said unto him, “Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, which was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people: 20And how the chief priests and our rulers delivered him to be condemned to death, and have crucified him. 21But we trusted that it had been he which should have redeemed Israel: and beside all this, to day is the third day since these things were done. 22Yea, and certain women also of our company made us astonished, which were early at the sepulchre; 23And when they found not his body, they came, saying, that they had also seen a vision of angels, which said that he was alive. 24And certain of them which were with us went to the sepulchre, and found it even so as the women had said: but him they saw not.”
25Then he said unto them, “O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken: 26Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory?” 27And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself.
28And they drew nigh unto the village, whither they went: and he made as though he would have gone further. 29But they constrained him, saying, “Abide with us: for it is toward evening, and the day is far spent.” And he went in to tarry with them. 30And it came to pass, as he sat at meat with them, he took bread, and blessed it, and brake, and gave to them. 31And their eyes were opened, and they knew him; and he vanished out of their sight. 32And they said one to another, “Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?”
33And they rose up the same hour, and returned to Jerusalem, and found the eleven gathered together, and them that were with them, 34Saying, “The Lord is risen indeed, and hath appeared to Simon.” 35And they told what things were done in the way, and how he was known of them in breaking of bread.
Mark 16:12–13[LONGER ENDING]: 12After that he appeared in another form unto two of them, as they walked, and went into the country. 13And they went and told it unto the residue: neither believed they them.
JESUS APPEARS TO HIS DISCIPLES IN JERUSALEM
Luke 24:36–48; cf. Acts 1:6–8; parallel Mark 16:14[LONGER ENDING]. John 20:20–31.
Jesus First Appears to His Disciples in the Upper Room
Luke 24:36–48: 36And as they thus spake, Jesus himself stood in the midst of them, and saith unto them, “Peace be unto you.” 37But they were terrified and affrighted, and supposed that they had seen a spirit. 38And he said unto them, “Why are ye troubled? and why do thoughts arise in your hearts? 39Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have.” 40And when he had thus spoken, he shewed them his hands and his feet. 41And while they yet believed not for joy, and wondered, he said unto them, “Have ye here any meat?” 42And they gave him a piece of a broiled fish, and of an honeycomb. 43And he took it, and did eat before them.
44And he said unto them, “These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me.” 45Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures, 46And said unto them, “Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: 47And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.” 48And ye are witnesses of these things.49And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.”
Cf. Acts 1:6–8: 6When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, “Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?” 7And he said unto them, “It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power. 8But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”
Mark 16:14[LONGER ENDING]: 14Afterward he appeared unto the eleven as they sat at meat, and upbraided them with their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen him after he was risen.
John 20:20–25: 20And when he had so said, he shewed unto them his hands and his side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord. 21Then said Jesus to them again, “Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.” 22And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, “Receive ye the Holy Ghost: 23Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.”
24But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came. 25The other disciples therefore said unto him, “We have seen the Lord.” But he said unto them, “Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe.”
Jesus Appears unto the Eleven, including Thomas
John 20:26–29: 26And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, “Peace be unto you.” 27Then saith he to Thomas, “Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing.” 28And Thomas answered and said unto him, “My Lord and my God.” 29Jesus saith unto him, “Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.”
The Purpose of the Gospel according to John
John 20:30–31: 30And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: 31But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.
JESUS APPEARS TO DISCIPLES AT THE SEA OF GALILEE
Jesus Appears to Seven at the Sea of Galilee
John 21:1–14: 1After these things Jesus shewed himself again to the disciples at the sea of Tiberias; and on this wise shewed he himself. 2There were together Simon Peter, and Thomas called Didymus, and Nathanael of Cana in Galilee, and the sons of Zebedee, and two other of his disciples. 3Simon Peter saith unto them, “I go a fishing.” They say unto him, “We also go with thee.” They went forth, and entered into a ship immediately; and that night they caught nothing.
4But when the morning was now come, Jesus stood on the shore: but the disciples knew not that it was Jesus. 5Then Jesus saith unto them, “Children, have ye any meat?” They answered him, “No.” 6And he said unto them, “Cast the net on the right side of the ship, and ye shall find. They cast therefore, and now they were not able to draw it for the multitude of fishes. 7Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved saith unto Peter, “It is the Lord.” Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his fisher’s coat unto him, (for he was naked,) and did cast himself into the sea. 8And the other disciples came in a little ship; (for they were not far from land, but as it were two hundred cubits,) dragging the net with fishes.
9As soon then as they were come to land, they saw a fire of coals there, and fish laid thereon, and bread. 10Jesus saith unto them, “Bring of the fish which ye have now caught.” 11Simon Peter went up, and drew the net to land full of great fishes, an hundred and fifty and three: and for all there were so many, yet was not the net broken. 12Jesus saith unto them, “Come and dine.” And none of the disciples durst ask him, “Who art thou?” knowing that it was the Lord. 13Jesus then cometh, and taketh bread, and giveth them, and fish likewise. 4This is now the third time that Jesus shewed himself to his disciples, after that he was risen from the dead.
Peter and the Risen Lord
John 21:15–19: 15So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these?” He saith unto him, “Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee.” He saith unto him, “Feed my lambs.” 16He saith to him again the second time, “Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me?” He saith unto him, “Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee.” He saith unto him, “Feed my sheep.” 17He saith unto him the third time, “Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me?” Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, “Lovest thou me?” And he said unto him, “Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee.” Jesus saith unto him, “Feed my sheep.”
18”Verily, verily, I say unto thee, ‘When thou wast young, thou girdedst thyself, and walkedst whither thou wouldest: but when thou shalt be old, thou shalt stretch forth thy hands, and another shall gird thee, and carry thee whither thou wouldest not.’” 19This spake he, signifying by what death he should glorify God. And when he had spoken this, he saith unto him, “Follow me.”
The Beloved Disciple and His Testimony
John 21:20–25: 20Then Peter, turning about, seeth the disciple whom Jesus loved following; which also leaned on his breast at supper, and said, “Lord, which is he that betrayeth thee?” 21Peter seeing him saith to Jesus, “Lord, and what shall this man do?” 22Jesus saith unto him, “If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee? follow thou me.”
23Then went this saying abroad among the brethren, that that disciple should not die: yet Jesus said not unto him, “He shall not die;” but, “If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee?”
24This is the disciple which testifieth of these things, and wrote these things: and we know that his testimony is true. 5And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written. Amen.
The Apostolic Commission
Matthew 28:16–20; parallel Mark 16:15–18[LONGER ENDING].
Matthew 28:16–20: 16Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them. 17And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted. 18And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, “All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. 19Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 20Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”
Mark 16:15–18[LONGER ENDING]: 15And he said unto them, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. 16He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. 17And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; 18They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.”
Luke 24:50–52; cf. Acts 1:9–11; parallel Mark 16:19–20[LONGER ENDING].
Luke 24:50–52: 50And he led them out as far as to Bethany, and he lifted up his hands, and blessed them. 51And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven. 52And they worshipped him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy: 53And were continually in the temple, praising and blessing God. Amen.
Cf. Acts 1:9–11: 9And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. 10And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; 11Which also said, “Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.”
Mark 16:19–20[LONGER ENDING]: 19So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God. 20And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen.
Witness of the Resurrection according to Paul
1 Corinthians 15:1–8: 1Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; 2By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. 3For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; 4And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:
5And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve: 6After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep. 7After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles. 8And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time.
 This scene clearly anticipates the resurrection of Jesus in John 20 and even uses some of the same terms, such as “graveclothes” and “facecloth” (Greek, soudarion; KJV, “napkin”). As a foil, it both compares and contrasts with the later incident—for instance, Jesus calls Lazarus from the tomb, but he comes out of his own tomb on his own; Lazarus brings his graveclothes with him because as a mortal he will need them again, but Jesus leaves his in the tomb; and Lazarus must be loosed whereas the disposition of the graveclothes in John 20 suggests that Jesus removed them himself.
 About this passage, Neal A. Maxwell wrote movingly, ““Later, in Gethsemane, the suffering Jesus began to be ‘sore amazed’ (Mark 14:33), or, in the Greek, ‘awestruck’ and ‘astonished.’ Imagine, Jehovah, the Creator of this and other worlds, “astonished”! Jesus knew cognitively what He must do, but not experientially. He had never personally known the exquisite and exacting process of an atonement before. Thus, when the agony came in its fulness, it was so much, much worse than even He with his unique intellect had ever imagined! . . . The cumulative weight of all mortal sins—past, present, and future—pressed upon that perfect, sinless, and sensitive Soul! All our infirmities and sicknesses were somehow, too, a part of the awful arithmetic of the Atonement.” (“Willing to Submit,” Ensign, May 1985, 70ff.)
 Two verses in Luke’s account, though they have significant theological importance, are nonetheless missing from some of the oldest, most reliable Greek manuscripts. These are Luke 22:43, which recounts “and there appeared an angel unto him from heaven, strengthening him,” and Luke 22:44, “his sweat was . . . great drops of blood falling down to the ground.” Because of the appearance of these verses in other manuscripts and their use in early Christian writings, the consensus of biblical scholarship acknowledges the antiquity of the accounts but tends to dispute that they originated with Luke. Nevertheless, early resistance to portraying a weak Jesus who needed help may have led some of the earliest scribes to remove them, only to have them restored by later copyists. See Metzger, Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, 151; Brown, Death of the Messiah, 1.180–86.; Blumell, “A Text-Critical Comparison of the King James New Testament with Certain Modern Translations,” TC: A Journal of Biblical Textual Criticism, 20 (2015).
 Mistakenly attributed to Jeremiah, this formula quotation is actually a reference to Zechariah 11:13, “And the LORD said unto me, Cast it unto the potter: a goodly price that I was prised at of them. And I took the thirty pieces of silver, and cast them to the potter in the house of the LORD.”
 Psalm 69:25, “Let their habitation be desolate; and let none dwell in their tents.”
 Psalm 109:8, “Let his days be few; and let another take his office.”
 In many versions of Mark, this is where the story ends, because the earliest and best manuscripts of that Gospel break off after verse 8, giving rise to the so-called “Short Ending of Mark.” Proponents of the short ending maintain that Mark ended it that way for dramatic effect, as a call for believers to decide how they would respond to the news of the Savior’s testified resurrection. Later, realizing what was missing, scribes reconstructed the ending based upon material from the endings of the Gospels of Matthew and Luke, which, because they may have been based upon Mark’s originally, may have come from his Gospel in the first place. See God So Loved the World, 111.