King of the Jews

King of the Jews - Jesus

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King of the Jews
JOHN 19 COMMENTARY
John 19:17-18 Golgotha

John 19:19-24 King of the Jews

John 19:25-27 (A) His Mother
John 19:25-27 (B) Criminals on the Cross
JOHN 19:19-22  19 Now Pilate wrote a title and put it on the cross. And the writing was: JESUS OF NAZARETH, THE KING OF THE JEWS. 20 Then many of the Jews read this title, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city; and it was written in Hebrew, Greek, and Latin. 21 Therefore the chief priests of the Jews said to Pilate, “Do not write, ‘The King of the Jews,’ but, ‘He said, “I am the King of the Jews.” ’ ” 22 Pilate answered, “What I have written, I have written.”

What did the chief priests ask Pilate to do?
Change the title from "JESUS OF NAZARETH, THE KING OF THE JEWS" (John 19:19) to "JESUS OF NAZARETH -  'HE SAID, "I AM THE KING OF THE JEWS." ' "

What difference would the change have made?
"JESUS OF NAZARETH -  'HE SAID, "I AM THE KING OF THE JEWS" ' " would have implied making a false claim as the crime for which Jesus had been executed. As it stood - "JESUS OF NAZARETH, THE KING OF THE JEWS" -  the criminals were the Jews who had killed their own king.

Why was a "title" (John 19:19) put on Jesus' cross in the first place?
Crucified victims served Rome as gruesome warnings against potential future criminals and enemies, so it was typical to identify the victim's name and crime on a sign.

Why was it written in "Hebrew, Greek, and Latin" (John 19:20)?
Hebrew was the local language. Greek was the most common language in the Roman Empire, and Latin was the official language of the Empire.

Why did Pilate reply, “What I have written, I have written” (John 19:22)?
Pilate probably was still unhappy about having been outmaneuvered by the Jews to crucify Jesus, and may have wanted the last word.

Who has the real last word?
God, who used Pilate’s anger against the Jews to put the correct label on the cross: "JESUS OF NAZARETH, THE KING OF THE JEWS."

JOHN 19:23  23 Then the soldiers, when they had crucified Jesus, took His garments and made four parts, to each soldier a part, and also the tunic. Now the tunic was without seam, woven from the top in one piece.

How many soldiers "crucified Jesus" (John 19:23)?
Four: “four parts, to each soldier a part” (John 19:23).

Why couldn’t they divide His "tunic" (John 19:23)?
It was "without seams, woven from the top in one piece" (John 19:23) so dividing it would have ripped it.

JOHN 19:24  24 They said therefore among themselves, “Let us not tear it, but cast lots for it, whose it shall be,” that the Scripture might be fulfilled which says: “They divided My garments among them, and for My clothing they cast lots.” Therefore the soldiers did these things.

Did the soldiers keep Jesus' clothes because they were nice clothes?
No, and Jesus warned, "But what did you go out to see? A man clothed in soft garments? Indeed those who are gorgeously appareled and live in luxury are in kings’ courts" (Luke 7:25). All clothes had to be hand-made back then and were relatively more expensive than today's machine-made clothes. One of the perks offered to Roman executioners was the right to keep the clothes of the people they executed.

Then what was Jesus wearing while on the cross?
Contrary to artists' renderings of Jesus' crucifixion, He was completely nude on the cross. Being stripped of dignity was part of the pain of death by crucifixion.

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