Jesus Followed Them

The below excerpt is from a sermon by John MacArthur on August 28th, 2016. The sermon passage was John 19:16-30.

“[Pilate] turns Jesus over to be crucified. He is handed over. It says in verse 17, they took Jesus, therefore, and he went out. He went out. I made a point of that last time because it’s very important to do so. How did he go out? Typically a person headed to crucifixion would fight and resist. A person who had been battered and abused and beaten, and was familiar with crucifixion as the Jews were, since the Romans were crucifying people all the time, all along the highways outside the city of Jerusalem. They would be terrified, if not utterly panicked that they were being taken to execution in the horrors of crucifixion, a lingering death that could last for days. People had to be driven, very often, like some kind of wild animal. They had to be controlled, but not Jesus. He went out. Mark 15, in his account, verse 20, Luke 23, in his account, verse 26 says, Jesus followed. Jesus followed them. This is remarkable. He didn’t have to be driven. He went willingly. He said in John 10, “No man takes my life from me. I lay it down of myself.” He went out. He followed. This is a fulfillment of Isaiah 53:7, that great prophecy of our Lord’s death, Isaiah 53:7 says, “He was led as a sheep to the slaughter.” He was led. As I said last time, cattle are herded from the rear. Sheep are led. He, like a sheep, was led, and he followed.

And we also note that he was bearing his own cross in verse 17. And I saw in that, a kind of an analogy to Isaac, who was to be the sacrifice that Abraham would make for God. And Isaac went to his own death as a sacrifice, thinking he was going to help his father in some way. He was moving toward his own death, Genesis 22 says, carrying the wood on his own back, the wood upon which he would give his life. Abraham put Isaac on the wood, on the altar, lifted up a knife to take his life. God stopped him and provided a substitute. That too is a picture of Christ. But in the case of Christ, he carried his own wood to his own execution, and there was no substitute. He would die on the very wood that he carried.”

You can listen to the entire message here.


John 19:16-30:

So they took Jesus, and he went out, bearing his own cross, to the place called The Place of a Skull, which in Aramaic is called Golgotha. There they crucified him, and with him two others, one on either side, and Jesus between them. Pilate also wrote an inscription and put it on the cross. It read, “Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews.” Many of the Jews read this inscription, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city, and it was written in Aramaic, in Latin, and in Greek. So the chief priests of the Jews said to Pilate, “Do not write, ‘The King of the Jews,’ but rather, ‘This man said, I am King of the Jews.’” Pilate answered, “What I have written I have written.”

When the soldiers had crucified Jesus, they took his garments and divided them into four parts, one part for each soldier; also his tunic. But the tunic was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom, so they said to one another, “Let us not tear it, but cast lots for it to see whose it shall be.” This was to fulfill the Scripture which says,

“They divided my garments among them,
and for my clothing they cast lots.”

So the soldiers did these things, but standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold, your son!” Then he said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother!” And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home.

After this, Jesus, knowing that all was now finished, said (to fulfill the Scripture), “I thirst.” A jar full of sour wine stood there, so they put a sponge full of the sour wine on a hyssop branch and held it to his mouth. When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, “It is finished,” and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.


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