Summary: Jesus finished the work of redemption. We are just waiting to sing the Song of the Lamb

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It's All Over But the Singing

John 19:25-31


Last week Pilate handed over (betrayed) Jesus to the will of the Jewish people to have Him crucified. It made mention that Pilate took personal responsibility for writing the accusation on the placard which would have hung around Jesus neck on the way to the cross and then was placed over his head on the cross. This title "Jesus of Nazareth, The King of the Jews" is more of a proclamation of Who Jesus is and what He was doing for us than the accusation of a crime. It is God Himself Who through Pilate wanted the world to know about this crucifixion on His terms rather than the worlds. Like it or not, Jesus is the Chosen One of God. They indeed did crucify Jesus, but on God's terms. And John emphasizes that Jesus as God the Son was in control of the situation, even hanging on the cross. He was not victim as we describe being a victim today. He was instead the victor.

We also saw the most powerful demonstration of love in history. This act of love started at the Incarnation of John 1:14 when Jesus willingly laid aside the prerogatives of Godhood (see Philippians 2:5-11) and was born in a cave under the palace of Herod the Great with nothing. And even the clothes off His back, all that was left to Him in this world, were taken from Him and divided among the soldiers. Of course, the truth is that all human beings are born with nothing and take nothing materially with them out of this world as Paul mentions (I Timothy 6:7). Seeing this to be the case, should we worry so much about gaining possessions in this world? Perhaps we should worry more about what we can take which is the testimony of Jesus.

Everything Jesus did was a fulfillment of Scripture and the will of the Father. Psalm 22 is quoted or mentioned by all of the gospel writers. Isaiah 53 and several other Scriptures are mentioned as well.

Exposition of the Text

v. 25. John does not mention the heckling crowds around the cross. We know from the other Gospels that there were plenty. Some of them were the Jewish leaders who were there. Some of them were the crowds who had shouted "Crucify Him!" And there were many there who probably had no idea of why Jesus was there. Mob psychology works in strange ways. Some of them were heckling Jesus just because everyone else was.

Who wasn't there is significant also. Only John was there of the disciples, kind of hidden in the crowd. The others had run in terror. Even Jesus’ brothers and sisters weren't there The only ones bold enough to identify with Jesus hanging from the cross were several women, either three or four depending on whether Mary the wife of Clopas was the same as his mother's sister. It could be dangerous to show too much sympathy for someone hanging on the cross. The women are to be commended for their faith.

v. 26. Jesus’ mother Mary was last mentioned as being in Jesus presence in John 2:1-11, at the wedding feast in Cana where Jesus turned the water into wine. At that occasion, Mary wanted Jesus to perform a miracle to provide for this couple who had run out of wine at the feast. Jesus had answered her with the odd "Woman, what have I to do with thee? My hour has not yet come." In that statement, He was reminding her that He had come of age and that He was no longer under His mother's authority. It was time for Him to do the will of His Father.

Now he addresses His mother again as "woman". I think Jesus here is reminding her that this was the hour for which He came into the world. He did not come into the world to be a wonder worker or even a good teacher. He had not come to fulfill the expectations of men. He came to die on the cross for the sin of the world, so that "whoever believes on him should not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16).

It was the responsibility of the oldest son to care for his widowed mother. Of course with Jesus dying on the cross, He would not be able to care for her in a material way. We can conclude from this that He had provided for His mother is some way to this point, even though it isn't recorded in Scripture.

If the oldest son was unable to care for His mother, it became the responsibility of the next oldest son, then to the other sons in birth order, then the daughters and sons-in-law. And Jesus had at least four other brothers and one sister, as Scripture mentions them. Why did Jesus commend His mother to John, who was at best a distant cousin? Why could Jesus not depend on His own siblings? We do know that the Scripture says that His own brothers and sisters were unbelievers (John 7:5, Matthew 12:46-50). Therefore Jesus was giving John the care of His mother. This would be described today as an "unfunded mandate". It wasn't like Jesus had anything of material to give to John to see his mother would have her needs met. And since the resurrection had not yet happened and John was yet to become in a true sense a believer, this would have imposed a burden on him. It also pointed out John to the crowd that John was an important person to Jesus. You can run, but you can't hide. If you are truly a disciple of Jesus, it will come to light by Jesus Himself.

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