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therefore went forth again, and saith unto them, Behold I bring him forth to you, that ye may know that ì find no fault' in him. Then came Jesus forth, wearing the crown of thorns, and the purple robe. And Pilate saith unto them, Behold the man !* When the chief priests therefore and officers saw him, they cried out, saying, Crucify him, crucify him. Pilate saith unto them, Take ye him, and crucify him: for I find no fault in him. The Jews answered him, We have a law, and by our law he ought to die, because he made himself the Son of God.

When Pilate therefore heard that saying, he was the more afraid :' and went again into the judgment-hall, and saith unto Jesus, Whence art thou ? But Jesus gave him no answer. Then saith Pilate unto him, Speakest thou not unto me? knowest thou not that I have power to crucify thee, and have power to release thee? Jesus answered, 66. Thou couldest have “ no power at all against me, except it were “ given thee from above:d therefore he that “ delivered me unto thee hath the greater sin.” And from thenceforth Pilate sought to release him: but the Jews cried out, saying, If thou let this man go, thou art not Cesar's friend : whosoever maketh himself a king, speaketh against Cesar.

a Look at the man, surely he is not able to give uneasiness to the Roman Emperor, for my part I entirely acquit him of the crime imputed to bim. . b The Jews not able to make good the charge of sedition set up their own law against him.

. Afraid lest he should add impiety to injustice by condemning Jesus.

Boast not of thy power; all power is from God.

When Pilate therefore heard that Place. saying, he brought Jesus forth, and The tribunal

of Pilate in a sat down in the judgment-seat in a place called place that is called the Pavement, the Pavebut in the Hebrew, Gabbatha’. And ment. it was the preparation of the passover, and about the sixth hour:' and he saith unto the Jews, Behold your King ! But they cried out, Away with him, away with him ; crucify him. Pilate saith unto them, Shall I crucify your King? The chief priests answered, We have no king but Cesar.

When Pilate saw that he could prevail nothing, but that rather a tumult was made, he took water, and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, I am innocent of the blood of this just person : see ye to it. Then answered all the people and said, His blood be on us, and on our children. Then released he unto them, him that for sedition and murder was cast into prison, whom they had desired; but he delivered Jesus to their will. And after that they had mocked him, they took the robe off from him, and put his own raiment on him, and led him away to crucify him.

a Gabbatha means an eminence, or elevated place.
• The day before the sabbath in the passover week.

· Six o'clock in the inorning. St.John computed agreeably to the mode of reckoning time adopted by the people of Asia.

" He spoke this with a view to move their compassion, and induce them to relent.

e This was a custom both among the Jews and Romans, when they wished to clear themselves of the guilt of having put to death an innocent man. Deut, xxi. 6. Psalm xxvi. 6.

f A most fatal imprecation, and most dreadfully fulfilled upon them at the siege and destruction of Jerusalem.

· 137. Judas repents, and destroys himself.

Then Judas, which had betrayed Place. him, when he saw that he was con- Jerusalem, demned, repented himself, and brought again the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders, saying, I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood. And they said, What is that to us ? see thou to that. And he cast down the pieces of silver in the temple, and departed, and went and hanged himself, And the chief priests took the silver pieces, and said, It is not lawful for to put them into the treasury, because it is the price of blood. And they took counsel, and bought with them the potter's field, to bury strangers in. Wherefore that field was called, The field of blood, unto this day. Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying, And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him that was valued, whom they of the children of Israel did value: a them for the potter's field, as the Lord appointed me.

a Such is the astonishing inconsistence of human nature, that the very men who had no scruple in shedding innocent blood, should yet be afraid to put into the treasury the money which they had given as the price of blood !

• See Acts i. 18. ,

* This prophecy is not found in Jeremiah, but in the eleventh chapter of Zechariah. The mistake of putting one name for the other, was owing perhaps, to the carelessness of transcribers.

138.

Christ is led away to be crucified.

And as they led him away, they, Place. laid hold upon one Simon, a Cyre- Between the

judgmentnian, who passed by, coming out of 'hall and the country, the father of Alexander Mount Caland Rufus, and on him they laid the vary. cross, that he might bear it after Jesus. And there followed him a great company of people, and of women, which also bewailed and lamented him. But Jesus turning unto them said, “ Daughters of Jerusalem, weep not for “ me, but weep for yourselves and for your “ children. For, behold, the days are coming, “ in the which they shall say, Blessed are the 6 barren, and the wombs that never bare, and “ the paps which never gave suck. Then shall “ they begin to say to the mountains, Fall on “ us; and to the hills, Cover us. For if they 66 do these things in a green tree, what shall 6 be done in the dry ?". And there were also two other malefactors led with him to be put to death. And when they were come unto a

a Afterwards two celebrated Christians. Acts xix. 33. Rom. xvi. 13.

» It was usual for criminals to bear their own cross; but when they were feeble, as the blessed Jesus might well be after all his bitter sufferings, they compelled Simon, probably a favourer of Jesus, to take up the hinder part of it, and carry it along with him. Is A Jewish proverb, meaning, if an innocent person thus suffer, what will become of the guilty? Ezek. XX. 47. xxi. 3, 4.

place called Golgotha, that is to Place. say, A place of a skull, they gave Mount him vinegar to drink mingled with gall :* and when he had tasted thereof, he would not drink.

Calvary.

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139. What happened while Jesus was on the

cross, till he expired. And the soldiers crucified him, and took his garments, and made four parts, to every soldier a part; and also his coat: now the coat was without seam, woven from the top throughout. They said therefore among themselves, Let us not rend it, but cast lots for it, whose it shall be: that the scripture might be fulfilled, which saith, They parted my raiment among them, and for my vesture they did cast Tots. These things therefore the soldiers did. And Pilate wrote a title, and put it on the cross. And the writing was, JESUS OF NAZARETH THE KING OF THE JEWS. This title then read many of the Jews : for the place where Jesus was crucified was nigh to the city: and it was written in Hebrew, and Greek, and Latin. Then said the chief priests of the Jews to Pilate, Write not, The King of the Jews; but that he said, I am King of the Jews. Pilate answered, What I have

a A kind of stupifying potion, intended to abate the sense of pain and hasten death, and placed near the cross for that purpose.

b* The vestment here called the coat was worn next the body; the rest of his clothes are called garments.

- Psalm xvii. 18.

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