"Psalm 23," John August Swanson. Used by permission from the artist.
Image © by John August Swanson. Artwork held in the Luther Seminary Fine Arts Collection, St. Paul, Minn.
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Jesus' Last Words
Jesus the Passover Lamb
John 19:23-30 Commentary
by Sherri Brown
John’s passion narrative presents Jesus as the Son of God and Son of Man who is the Christ, not by coming down from the cross and living as an earthly king in splendor, but by remaining on the cross to become the one ultimate redeeming sacrifice that atones for all sin for all time (John 18:1-19:42).
To do this, John develops the drama across five geographical locations: the garden across the Kidron valley (18:1-11); the house of Annas, the father-in-law of the high priest (18:12-27); the Roman praetorium (18:28-19:16a); Golgotha, the Place of the Skull (19:16b-37); and the new garden of Jesus’ burial (19:38-42). As Jesus moves to each new location, the narrator describes the place as well as the characters and activity that will be involved there. John thus presents Jesus’ passion as a five-act play.
Act Four sends both Jesus and audiences to the cross. Act Three confirmed Jesus to be the gift of truth given by God to the world who resolutely sacrifices himself to fulfill his mission. Act Four presents the completion of that mission which results from the revelation of truth and Pilate’s inability to stand for it. Jesus’ crucifixion is presented in seven scenes, framed by introductory verses of character and setting (John 19:16b-17) and concluding verses of ...
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2019-20 Worship resources
The narrative lectionary is a four-year cycle of readings. Read more.
NL313: Jesus' Last Words & Jesus the Passover Lamb
March 29, 2018
Podcast on John 19:23-42, the Narrative Lectionary readings for Mar. 29 (Maundy Thursday) & Mar. 30 (Good Friday), 2018, featuring Profs. Rolf Jacobson, Craig Koester, and Karoline Lewis. Podcast recorded at Luther Seminary, Saint Paul, Minn.