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Luke 23Amplified Bible (AMP)

Jesus before Pilate

23 Then the whole assembly got up and brought Him before Pilate. They began to accuse Jesus, asserting, “We found this Man misleading and perverting our nation and forbidding us to pay taxes to Caesar, and claiming that He Himself is Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed), a King.” So Pilate asked Him, “Are You the King of the Jews?” And He answered him, It is just as you say.” Then Pilate said to the chief priests and the crowds, “I find no guilt in this Man.” But they were insistent and said, “He stirs up the people [to rebel], teaching throughout Judea, starting from Galilee even as far as here [in Jerusalem].”

When Pilate heard it, he asked whether the man was a Galilean. And when he learned that He belonged to the jurisdiction of [a]Herod [Antipas, the tetrarch of Galilee], he sent Him to Herod, who was also in Jerusalem at that time.

Jesus before Herod

When Herod saw Jesus, he was exceedingly pleased. He had wanted to see Him for a long time because of what he had heard about Him, and was hoping to see some [miraculous] sign [even something spectacular] done by Him. And he questioned Him at some length, but Jesus made no reply. 10 The chief priests and the scribes were standing there, continually accusing Him heatedly. 11 And Herod with his soldiers, after treating Him with contempt and mocking and ridiculing Him, dressed Him in a gorgeous robe and sent Him back to Pilate. 12 Now that very day Herod and Pilate became friends with each other—before this they had been enemies.

Pilate Seeks Jesus’ Release

13 Pilate summoned the chief priests and the rulers and the people, 14 and said to them, “You brought this man before me as one who corrupts and incites the people to rebellion. After examining Him before you, I have found no guilt in this Man regarding the charges which you make against Him. 15 No, nor has Herod, for he sent Him back to us; and indeed, He has done nothing to deserve death. 16 Therefore I will punish Him [to teach Him a lesson] and release Him.” 17 [b][Now he was obligated to release to them one prisoner at the Feast.]

18 But they [loudly] shouted out all together, saying, “Away with this Man, and release Barabbas to us!” 19 (He was one who had been thrown into prison for an insurrection that happened in the city, and for murder.) 20 Pilate addressed them again, wanting to release Jesus, 21 but they kept shouting out, “Crucify, crucify Him!” 22 A third time he said to them, “Why, what wrong has He done? I have found no guilt [no crime, no offense] in Him demanding death; therefore I will punish Him [to teach Him a lesson] and release Him.” 23 But they were insistent and unrelenting, demanding with loud voices that Jesus be crucified. And their voices began to prevail and accomplish their purpose. 24 Pilate pronounced sentence that their demand be granted. 25 And he released the man they were asking for who had been thrown into prison for insurrection and murder, but he handed over Jesus to their will.

Simon Bears the Cross

26 When they led Him away, they seized a man, [c]Simon of [d]Cyrene, who was coming in [to the city] from the country, and [e]placed on him the cross to carry behind Jesus.

27 Following Him was a large crowd of the people, including women who were mourning and wailing for Him. 28 But Jesus, turning toward them, said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for Me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. 29 For behold, the days are coming when they will say, ‘Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that have not given birth, and the breasts that have never nursed.’ 30 Then they will begin to say to the mountains, ‘Fall on us!’ and to the hills, ‘Cover us!’ 31 [f]For if they do these things when the tree is green, what will happen when it is dry?”

32 Two others also, who were criminals, were being led away to be executed with Him.

The Crucifixion

33 When they came to the place called [g]The Skull, there they crucified Him and the criminals, one on the right and one on the left. 34 [h]And Jesus was saying, “Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing.” And they cast lots, dividing His clothes among themselves. 35 Now the people stood by, watching; but even the rulers ridiculed and sneered at Him, saying, “He saved others [from death]; let Him save Himself if He is the Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed) of God, His Chosen One.” 36 The soldiers also mocked Him, coming up to Him and [cruelly] offering Him sour wine, 37 and sarcastically saying, “If you are [really] the King of the Jews, save Yourself [from death]!” 38 Now there was also an inscription above Him: “THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS.”

39 One of the criminals who had been hanged [on a cross beside Him] kept hurling abuse at Him, saying, “Are You not the Christ? Save Yourself and us [from death]!” 40 But the other one rebuked him, saying, “Do you not even fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? 41 We are suffering justly, because we are getting what we deserve for what we have done; but this Man has done nothing wrong.” 42 And he was saying, “Jesus, [please] remember me when You come into Your kingdom!” 43 Jesus said to him, “I assure you and most solemnly say to you, today you will be with Me in [i]Paradise.”

44 It was now about the sixth hour (noon), and darkness came over the whole land until the ninth hour (3:00 p.m.), 45 because the sun was [j]obscured; and the veil [of the Holy of Holies] of the temple was [k]torn in two [from top to bottom]. 46 And Jesus, crying out with a loud voice, said, “Father, into Your hands I commit My spirit!” Having said this, He breathed His last. 47 Now when the centurion saw what had taken place, he began praising and honoring God, saying, “Certainly this Man was innocent.” 48 All the crowds who had gathered for this spectacle, when they saw what had happened, began to return [to their homes], beating their breasts [as a sign of mourning or repentance]. 49 And all His acquaintances and the women who had accompanied Him from Galilee were standing at a distance, watching these things.

Jesus Is Buried

50 A man named Joseph, who was a member of the Council (Sanhedrin, Jewish High Court), a good and honorable man 51 (he had not consented to the Council’s plan and action) a man from Arimathea, a city of the Jews, who was waiting for and expecting the kingdom of God; 52 this man went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. 53 And [after receiving permission] he took it down and wrapped it in a linen [burial] cloth and laid Him in a tomb cut into the rock, where no one had yet been laid. 54 It was the day of preparation [for the Sabbath], and the Sabbath was dawning. 55 Now the women who had come with Him from Galilee followed [closely], and saw the tomb and how His body was laid. 56 Then they went back and prepared spices and ointments and sweet-smelling herbs.

And on the Sabbath they rested in accordance with the commandment [forbidding work].

Footnotes:

  1. Luke 23:7 See note Matt 22:17.
  2. Luke 23:17 Most early mss do not contain this verse.
  3. Luke 23:26 The father of Alexander and Rufus, disciples in Rome.
  4. Luke 23:26 A port city in north Africa.
  5. Luke 23:26 The crossbeam was usually placed on the nape of the neck like a yoke.
  6. Luke 23:31 A proverb meaning if the innocent has to suffer what will happen to the guilty.
  7. Luke 23:33 Latin: Calvarius; or Calvary; Aram: Golgotha; Greek: Kranion.
  8. Luke 23:34 Some early mss do not contain the words “And Jesus was saying...doing.”
  9. Luke 23:43 I.e. possibly the third heaven, the special place or “garden” (Gen 2:8-10) between death and resurrection.
  10. Luke 23:45 Lit failing. The language that Luke uses is found elsewhere in Greek literature to describe an eclipse.
  11. Luke 23:45 The tearing of the veil established the institution of a new, direct way of communication between God and mankind. The sacrificial death of Christ nullified the need for priestly intervention between God and man, and abolished the need for animal sacrifice.
Amplified Bible (AMP)

Copyright © 2015 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, CA 90631. All rights reserved.

Luke 23King James Version (KJV)

23 And the whole multitude of them arose, and led him unto Pilate.

And 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.

And Pilate asked him, saying, Art thou the King of the Jews? And he answered him and said, Thou sayest it.

Then said Pilate to the chief priests and to the people, I find no fault in this man.

And they were the more fierce, saying, He stirreth up the people, teaching throughout all Jewry, beginning from Galilee to this place.

When Pilate heard of Galilee, he asked whether the man were a Galilaean.

And 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.

And 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.

Then he questioned with him in many words; but he answered him nothing.

10 And the chief priests and scribes stood and vehemently accused him.

11 And Herod with his men of war set him at nought, and mocked him, and arrayed him in a gorgeous robe, and sent him again to Pilate.

12 And the same day Pilate and Herod were made friends together: for before they were at enmity between themselves.

13 And Pilate, when he had called together the chief priests and the rulers and the people,

14 Said 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:

15 No, nor yet Herod: for I sent you to him; and, lo, nothing worthy of death is done unto him.

16 I will therefore chastise him, and release him.

17 (For of necessity he must release one unto them at the feast.)

18 And 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.)

20 Pilate therefore, willing to release Jesus, spake again to them.

21 But they cried, saying, Crucify him, crucify him.

22 And 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.

23 And they were instant with loud voices, requiring that he might be crucified. And the voices of them and of the chief priests prevailed.

24 And Pilate gave sentence that it should be as they required.

25 And 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.

26 And 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.

27 And there followed him a great company of people, and of women, which also bewailed and lamented him.

28 But Jesus turning unto them said, Daughters of Jerusalem, weep not for me, but weep for yourselves, and for your children.

29 For, 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.

30 Then shall they begin to say to the mountains, Fall on us; and to the hills, Cover us.

31 For if they do these things in a green tree, what shall be done in the dry?

32 And there were also two other, malefactors, led with him to be put to death.

33 And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary, there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the other on the left.

34 Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.

35 And 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.

36 And the soldiers also mocked him, coming to him, and offering him vinegar,

37 And saying, If thou be the king of the Jews, save thyself.

38 And a superscription also was written over him in letters of Greek, and Latin, and Hebrew, This Is The King Of The Jews.

39 And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If thou be Christ, save thyself and us.

40 But the other answering rebuked him, saying, Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation?

41 And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this man hath done nothing amiss.

42 And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom.

43 And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.

44 And it was about the sixth hour, and there was a darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour.

45 And the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was rent in the midst.

46 And 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.

47 Now when the centurion saw what was done, he glorified God, saying, Certainly this was a righteous man.

48 And all the people that came together to that sight, beholding the things which were done, smote their breasts, and returned.

49 And all his acquaintance, and the women that followed him from Galilee, stood afar off, beholding these things.

50 And, 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.

52 This man went unto Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus.

53 And 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.

54 And that day was the preparation, and the sabbath drew on.

55 And the women also, which came with him from Galilee, followed after, and beheld the sepulchre, and how his body was laid.

56 And they returned, and prepared spices and ointments; and rested the sabbath day according to the commandment.

Luke 23Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

Jesus Faces Pilate

23 Then their whole assembly rose up and brought Him before Pilate. They began to accuse Him, saying, “We found this man subverting our nation, opposing payment of taxes to Caesar, and saying that He Himself is the Messiah, a King.”

So Pilate asked Him, “Are You the King of the Jews?”

He answered him, “You have said it.”[a]

Pilate then told the chief priests and the crowds, “I find no grounds for charging this man.”

But they kept insisting, “He stirs up the people, teaching throughout all Judea, from Galilee where He started even to here.”

Jesus Faces Herod Antipas

When Pilate heard this,[b] he asked if the man was a Galilean. Finding that He was under Herod’s jurisdiction, he sent Him to Herod, who was also in Jerusalem during those days. Herod was very glad to see Jesus; for a long time he had wanted to see Him because he had heard about Him and was hoping to see some miracle[c] performed by Him. So he kept asking Him questions, but Jesus did not answer him. 10 The chief priests and the scribes stood by, vehemently accusing Him. 11 Then Herod, with his soldiers, treated Him with contempt, mocked Him, dressed Him in a brilliant robe, and sent Him back to Pilate. 12 That very day Herod and Pilate became friends.[d] Previously, they had been hostile toward each other.

Jesus or Barabbas

13 Pilate called together the chief priests, the leaders, and the people, 14 and said to them, “You have brought me this man as one who subverts the people. But in fact, after examining Him in your presence, I have found no grounds to charge this man with those things you accuse Him of. 15 Neither has Herod, because he sent Him back to us. Clearly, He has done nothing to deserve death. 16 Therefore, I will have Him whipped[e] and then release Him.” [17 For according to the festival he had to release someone to them.][f]

18 Then they all cried out together, “Take this man away! Release Barabbas to us!” 19 (He had been thrown into prison for a rebellion that had taken place in the city, and for murder.)

20 Pilate, wanting to release Jesus, addressed them again, 21 but they kept shouting, “Crucify! Crucify Him!”

22 A third time he said to them, “Why? What has this man done wrong? I have found in Him no grounds for the death penalty. Therefore, I will have Him whipped and then release Him.”

23 But they kept up the pressure, demanding with loud voices that He be crucified. And their voices[g] won out. 24 So Pilate decided to grant their demand 25 and released the one they were asking for, who had been thrown into prison for rebellion and murder. But he handed Jesus over to their will.

The Way to the Cross

26 As they led Him away, they seized Simon, a Cyrenian, who was coming in from the country, and laid the cross on him to carry behind Jesus. 27 A large crowd of people followed Him, including women who were mourning and lamenting Him. 28 But turning to them, Jesus said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for Me, but weep for yourselves and your children. 29 Look, the days are coming when they will say, ‘The women without children, the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never nursed, are fortunate!’ 30 Then they will begin to say to the mountains, ‘Fall on us!’ and to the hills, ‘Cover us!’[h] 31 For if they do these things when the wood is green, what will happen when it is dry?”

Crucified between Two Criminals

32 Two others—criminals—were also led away to be executed with Him. 33 When they arrived at the place called The Skull, they crucified Him there, along with the criminals, one on the right and one on the left. [34 Then Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, because they do not know what they are doing.”][i] And they divided His clothes and cast lots.

35 The people stood watching, and even the leaders kept scoffing: “He saved others; let Him save Himself if this is God’s Messiah, the Chosen One!” 36 The soldiers also mocked Him. They came offering Him sour wine 37 and said, “If You are the King of the Jews, save Yourself!”

38 An inscription was above Him:[j]

THIS IS

THE KING OF THE JEWS.

39 Then one of the criminals hanging there began to yell insults at[k] Him: “Aren’t You the Messiah? Save Yourself and us!”

40 But the other answered, rebuking him: “Don’t you even fear God, since you are undergoing the same punishment? 41 We are punished justly, because we’re getting back what we deserve for the things we did, but this man has done nothing wrong.” 42 Then he said, “Jesus, remember me[l] when You come into Your kingdom!”

43 And He said to him, “I assure you: Today you will be with Me in paradise.”

The Death of Jesus

44 It was now about noon,[m] and darkness came over the whole land[n] until three,[o] 45 because the sun’s light failed.[p] The curtain of the sanctuary was split down the middle. 46 And Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into Your hands I entrust My spirit.[q] Saying this, He breathed His last.

47 When the centurion saw what happened, he began to glorify God, saying, “This man really was righteous!” 48 All the crowds that had gathered for this spectacle, when they saw what had taken place, went home, striking their chests.[r] 49 But all who knew Him, including the women who had followed Him from Galilee, stood at a distance, watching these things.

The Burial of Jesus

50 There was a good and righteous man named Joseph, a member of the Sanhedrin, 51 who had not agreed with their plan and action. He was from Arimathea, a Judean town, and was looking forward to the kingdom of God. 52 He approached Pilate and asked for Jesus’ body. 53 Taking it down, he wrapped it in fine linen and placed it in a tomb cut into the rock, where no one had ever been placed.[s] 54 It was preparation day, and the Sabbath was about to begin.[t] 55 The women who had come with Him from Galilee followed along and observed the tomb and how His body was placed. 56 Then they returned and prepared spices and perfumes. And they rested on the Sabbath according to the commandment.

Footnotes:

  1. Luke 23:3 Or That is true; an affirmative oath
  2. Luke 23:6 Other mss read heard “Galilee”
  3. Luke 23:8 Or sign
  4. Luke 23:12 Lit friends with one another
  5. Luke 23:16 Gk paideuo; to discipline or “teach a lesson”; 1Kg 12:11,14 LXX; 2Ch 10:11,14; perhaps a way of referring to the Roman scourging; Lat flagellatio
  6. Luke 23:17 Other mss omit bracketed text
  7. Luke 23:23 Other mss add and those of the chief priests
  8. Luke 23:30 Hs 10:8
  9. Luke 23:34 Other mss omit bracketed text
  10. Luke 23:38 Other mss add written in Greek, Latin, and Hebrew letters
  11. Luke 23:39 Or began to blaspheme
  12. Luke 23:42 Other mss add Lord
  13. Luke 23:44 Lit about the sixth hour
  14. Luke 23:44 Or whole earth
  15. Luke 23:44 Lit the ninth hour
  16. Luke 23:45 Other mss read three, and the sun was darkened
  17. Luke 23:46 Ps 31:5
  18. Luke 23:48 = mourning
  19. Luke 23:53 Or interred, or laid
  20. Luke 23:54 Lit was dawning; not in the morning but at sundown Friday

Luke 23New International Version (NIV)

23 Then the whole assembly rose and led him off to Pilate. And they began to accuse him, saying, “We have found this man subverting our nation. He opposes payment of taxes to Caesar and claims to be Messiah, a king.”

So Pilate asked Jesus, “Are you the king of the Jews?”

“You have said so,” Jesus replied.

Then Pilate announced to the chief priests and the crowd, “I find no basis for a charge against this man.”

But they insisted, “He stirs up the people all over Judea by his teaching. He started in Galilee and has come all the way here.”

On hearing this, Pilate asked if the man was a Galilean. When he learned that Jesus was under Herod’s jurisdiction, he sent him to Herod, who was also in Jerusalem at that time.

When Herod saw Jesus, he was greatly pleased, because for a long time he had been wanting to see him. From what he had heard about him, he hoped to see him perform a sign of some sort. He plied him with many questions, but Jesus gave him no answer. 10 The chief priests and the teachers of the law were standing there, vehemently accusing him. 11 Then Herod and his soldiers ridiculed and mocked him. Dressing him in an elegant robe, they sent him back to Pilate. 12 That day Herod and Pilate became friends—before this they had been enemies.

13 Pilate called together the chief priests, the rulers and the people, 14 and said to them, “You brought me this man as one who was inciting the people to rebellion. I have examined him in your presence and have found no basis for your charges against him. 15 Neither has Herod, for he sent him back to us; as you can see, he has done nothing to deserve death. 16 Therefore, I will punish him and then release him.” [17] [a]

18 But the whole crowd shouted, “Away with this man! Release Barabbas to us!” 19 (Barabbas had been thrown into prison for an insurrection in the city, and for murder.)

20 Wanting to release Jesus, Pilate appealed to them again. 21 But they kept shouting, “Crucify him! Crucify him!”

22 For the third time he spoke to them: “Why? What crime has this man committed? I have found in him no grounds for the death penalty. Therefore I will have him punished and then release him.”

23 But with loud shouts they insistently demanded that he be crucified, and their shouts prevailed. 24 So Pilate decided to grant their demand. 25 He released the man who had been thrown into prison for insurrection and murder, the one they asked for, and surrendered Jesus to their will.

The Crucifixion of Jesus

26 As the soldiers led him away, they seized Simon from Cyrene, who was on his way in from the country, and put the cross on him and made him carry it behind Jesus. 27 A large number of people followed him, including women who mourned and wailed for him. 28 Jesus turned and said to them, “Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me; weep for yourselves and for your children. 29 For the time will come when you will say, ‘Blessed are the childless women, the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never nursed!’ 30 Then

“‘they will say to the mountains, “Fall on us!”
    and to the hills, “Cover us!”’[b]

31 For if people do these things when the tree is green, what will happen when it is dry?”

32 Two other men, both criminals, were also led out with him to be executed. 33 When they came to the place called the Skull, they crucified him there, along with the criminals—one on his right, the other on his left. 34 Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”[c] And they divided up his clothes by casting lots.

35 The people stood watching, and the rulers even sneered at him. They said, “He saved others; let him save himself if he is God’s Messiah, the Chosen One.”

36 The soldiers also came up and mocked him. They offered him wine vinegar 37 and said, “If you are the king of the Jews, save yourself.”

38 There was a written notice above him, which read: this is the king of the jews.

39 One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: “Aren’t you the Messiah? Save yourself and us!”

40 But the other criminal rebuked him. “Don’t you fear God,” he said, “since you are under the same sentence? 41 We are punished justly, for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong.”

42 Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.[d]

43 Jesus answered him, “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.”

The Death of Jesus

44 It was now about noon, and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon, 45 for the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. 46 Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.”[e] When he had said this, he breathed his last.

47 The centurion, seeing what had happened, praised God and said, “Surely this was a righteous man.” 48 When all the people who had gathered to witness this sight saw what took place, they beat their breasts and went away. 49 But all those who knew him, including the women who had followed him from Galilee, stood at a distance, watching these things.

The Burial of Jesus

50 Now there was a man named Joseph, a member of the Council, a good and upright man, 51 who had not consented to their decision and action. He came from the Judean town of Arimathea, and he himself was waiting for the kingdom of God. 52 Going to Pilate, he asked for Jesus’ body. 53 Then he took it down, wrapped it in linen cloth and placed it in a tomb cut in the rock, one in which no one had yet been laid. 54 It was Preparation Day, and the Sabbath was about to begin.

55 The women who had come with Jesus from Galilee followed Joseph and saw the tomb and how his body was laid in it. 56 Then they went home and prepared spices and perfumes. But they rested on the Sabbath in obedience to the commandment.

Footnotes:

  1. Luke 23:17 Some manuscripts include here words similar to Matt. 27:15 and Mark 15:6.
  2. Luke 23:30 Hosea 10:8
  3. Luke 23:34 Some early manuscripts do not have this sentence.
  4. Luke 23:42 Some manuscripts come with your kingly power
  5. Luke 23:46 Psalm 31:5
New International Version (NIV)

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Luke 23The Message (MSG)

Pilate

23 1-2 Then they all took Jesus to Pilate and began to bring up charges against him. They said, “We found this man undermining our law and order, forbidding taxes to be paid to Caesar, setting himself up as Messiah-King.”

Pilate asked him, “Is this true that you’re ‘King of the Jews’?”

“Those are your words, not mine,” Jesus replied.

Pilate told the high priests and the accompanying crowd, “I find nothing wrong here. He seems harmless enough to me.”

But they were vehement. “He’s stirring up unrest among the people with his teaching, disturbing the peace everywhere, starting in Galilee and now all through Judea. He’s a dangerous man, endangering the peace.”

6-7 When Pilate heard that, he asked, “So, he’s a Galilean?” Realizing that he properly came under Herod’s jurisdiction, he passed the buck to Herod, who just happened to be in Jerusalem for a few days.

8-10 Herod was delighted when Jesus showed up. He had wanted for a long time to see him, he’d heard so much about him. He hoped to see him do something spectacular. He peppered him with questions. Jesus didn’t answer—not one word. But the high priests and religion scholars were right there, saying their piece, strident and shrill in their accusations.

11-12 Mightily offended, Herod turned on Jesus. His soldiers joined in, taunting and jeering. Then they dressed him up in an elaborate king costume and sent him back to Pilate. That day Herod and Pilate became thick as thieves. Always before they had kept their distance.

13-16 Then Pilate called in the high priests, rulers, and the others and said, “You brought this man to me as a disturber of the peace. I examined him in front of all of you and found there was nothing to your charge. And neither did Herod, for he has sent him back here with a clean bill of health. It’s clear that he’s done nothing wrong, let alone anything deserving death. I’m going to warn him to watch his step and let him go.”

18-20 At that, the crowd went wild: “Kill him! Give us Barabbas!” (Barabbas had been thrown in prison for starting a riot in the city and for murder.) Pilate still wanted to let Jesus go, and so spoke out again.

21 But they kept shouting back, “Crucify! Crucify him!”

22 He tried a third time. “But for what crime? I’ve found nothing in him deserving death. I’m going to warn him to watch his step and let him go.”

23-25 But they kept at it, a shouting mob, demanding that he be crucified. And finally they shouted him down. Pilate caved in and gave them what they wanted. He released the man thrown in prison for rioting and murder, and gave them Jesus to do whatever they wanted.

Skull Hill

26-31 As they led him off, they made Simon, a man from Cyrene who happened to be coming in from the countryside, carry the cross behind Jesus. A huge crowd of people followed, along with women weeping and carrying on. At one point Jesus turned to the women and said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, don’t cry for me. Cry for yourselves and for your children. The time is coming when they’ll say, ‘Lucky the women who never conceived! Lucky the wombs that never gave birth! Lucky the breasts that never gave milk!’ Then they’ll start calling to the mountains, ‘Fall down on us!’ calling to the hills, ‘Cover us up!’ If people do these things to a live, green tree, can you imagine what they’ll do with deadwood?”

32 Two others, both criminals, were taken along with him for execution.

33 When they got to the place called Skull Hill, they crucified him, along with the criminals, one on his right, the other on his left.

34-35 Jesus prayed, “Father, forgive them; they don’t know what they’re doing.”

Dividing up his clothes, they threw dice for them. The people stood there staring at Jesus, and the ringleaders made faces, taunting, “He saved others. Let’s see him save himself! The Messiah of God—ha! The Chosen—ha!”

36-37 The soldiers also came up and poked fun at him, making a game of it. They toasted him with sour wine: “So you’re King of the Jews! Save yourself!”

38 Printed over him was a sign: this is the king of the jews.

39 One of the criminals hanging alongside cursed him: “Some Messiah you are! Save yourself! Save us!”

40-41 But the other one made him shut up: “Have you no fear of God? You’re getting the same as him. We deserve this, but not him—he did nothing to deserve this.”

42 Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you enter your kingdom.”

43 He said, “Don’t worry, I will. Today you will join me in paradise.”

44-46 By now it was noon. The whole earth became dark, the darkness lasting three hours—a total blackout. The Temple curtain split right down the middle. Jesus called loudly, “Father, I place my life in your hands!” Then he breathed his last.

47 When the captain there saw what happened, he honored God: “This man was innocent! A good man, and innocent!”

48-49 All who had come around as spectators to watch the show, when they saw what actually happened, were overcome with grief and headed home. Those who knew Jesus well, along with the women who had followed him from Galilee, stood at a respectful distance and kept vigil.

50-54 There was a man by the name of Joseph, a member of the Jewish High Council, a man of good heart and good character. He had not gone along with the plans and actions of the council. His hometown was the Jewish village of Arimathea. He lived in alert expectation of the kingdom of God. He went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. Taking him down, he wrapped him in a linen shroud and placed him in a tomb chiseled into the rock, a tomb never yet used. It was the day before Sabbath, the Sabbath just about to begin.

55-56 The women who had been companions of Jesus from Galilee followed along. They saw the tomb where Jesus’ body was placed. Then they went back to prepare burial spices and perfumes. They rested quietly on the Sabbath, as commanded.

The Message (MSG)

Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson

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