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Summary: The reasons for the burial of Jesus are many; here are two of the most obvious.

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Contemplating Jesus’ Burial

(John 19:31-42)

1. I grew up with my parents and sister calling me Eddie. My dad’s first name was Edward, but we had different middle names, so I was not a “junior.” He was called “Eddie” as well, so he was big Eddie and I was little Eddie. My sister was named Edlyn. Her friends began to call her “Eddie.” So all three of us were called Eddie.

2. There is a funeral home in Peru called, "Eikenberry – Eddy." I try to stay away from there. Since I have no death wish, I try to stay away from them. Maybe then can bury Eddie, but I don’t want to be buried at this point in life!

3. Yet I know my time will come, as will yours. Only one generation of believers — those alive when Jesus returns to the clouds — will escape death.. The good news is that Jesus has removed the sting of death through the Gospel.

4. In I Cor. 15:3, Paul defines the Gospel of the Grace of God in three points: (1) Christ died for OUR sins, (2) He was buried, and (3) He rose again on the third day.

5. Often times we ignore that middle truth, He was buried. But it is not merely a superficial detail, it is part of the good news.

MAIN IDEA: The reasons for the burial of Jesus are many; here are two of the most obvious.

I. To Confirm Jesus As DEAD: An Acceptable Passover Sacrifice (John 19:31-37)

A. The PRESSURE to remove the bodies by nightfall

Deut. 21:22-23a, “And if a man has committed a crime punishable by death and he is put to death, and you hang him on a tree, his body shall not remain all night on the tree, but you shall bury him the same day, for a hanged man is cursed by God.”

B. Jesus side PIERCED

1. burst heart

2. plasma separated from clotted blood

C. The Passover PRINCIPLE followed

Numbers 9:12’ “They shall leave none of it until the morning, nor break any of its bones; according to all the statute for the Passover they shall keep it.”

Psalm 34:20, “He keeps all his bones; not one of them is broken.”

1. why they would break the bones

2. certain soldiers were schooled in crucifixion….

3. Christ died on Passover Day (two reckonings)

4. Passover also initiated the week long feast of Unleavened Bread, in the Midst of which was the Feast of First Fruits (Easter)

5. Zechariah 12:10, “They will look on him whom they have pierced.”

6. Matzoh is the unleavened Passover bread. It is intentionally pierced.

7. The Romans thought they were keeping the Jews in line, but they were actually accomplishing the very purposes of God. Lesser things happen in our lives like that.

D. John WITNESSES this first hand

(1) Youngest apostle, wrote this near end of his life, possibly 85-90 AD

(2) heresy circulated: Jesus did not have a body (gnostics)

Application: God passed over the homes of the Israelites when He saw the blood… why did he die? For you. For me.

II. To Provide An HONORABLE Burial: A Prelude to Resurrection (John 19:38-42)

A. The Isaiah 53:9 prophecy FULFILLED

Isaiah 53:9, “And they made his grave with the wicked and with a rich man in his death”

B. Being buried in a tomb was an HONOR

1. Most people were buried in the ground, ossuary…[dead bury dead]

2. Jesus was born like a pauper, executed like a criminal, but honored in his burial

C. Being buried in a notable tomb precluded the idea of a MISTAKE

1. Joseph and Nicodemus were both members of the ruling council, the Sanhedrin

2. Before you condemn them, consider: these 2 had been secret believers & became public while the apostles, who were public believers, became secret (reversal!)

3. Have you ever gone through a crisis of faith? Like the apostles, perhaps you had accepted wrong ideas, and when they proved untrue, you doubted?

4. other Gospels tell us that this tomb was his…near where Jesus was crucified…

5. A clear, easy to find, nearby tomb -- donated by a dignified and highly esteemed man -- it was an important defense of the Gospel that 2 out of Israel's 70 leaders buried Jesus -- and these men were probably among the most respected…

6. Never underestimate the faith of the quiet!!! Let our faith surface and be known.

D. They went to Pilate to acquire Jesus’ body

1. normal protocol

2. Pilate probably thought they represented the Sanhedrin…

3. Mary Magdalene and Mary, the Mother of Joses watched and perhaps helped as Joseph and Nicodemus wrapped the body with 75 lbs. of sticky spices (used as adhesive); this is not embalming but wrapping…put in this hewn-out tomb, and rolled stone in front of it.

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