Praise Chapel Puget Sound A Walk Through the BibleWith Bro. Bill Parker New Testament Lesson 3 The Final Week
A Walk Through the Bible • In this lesson we will explore the purpose of all human history; the "Passion Week," in which we see expressed the agony and love of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. A foundational question to ask about this week is, "When was the Crucifixion?" Many good scholars still defend the traditional Friday view, but many other scholars believe it was on a Wednesday (which is what I believe). Here's why.
A Walk Through the Bible The Gospel of John indicates that six days before the Passover, Jesus came to Bethany from Jericho. That's more than a Sabbath day's journey; so six days prior could not have been a Saturday and would eliminate the possibility that Passover that year was on a Friday.
A Walk Through the Bible Furthermore, the Greek text of Matthew clearly describes the women coming to the tomb that Sunday morning, “After the Sabbaths were passed,” “Sabbaths” being plural.
A Walk Through the Bible • (There is a mistranslation in English) Why is that significant? In addition to the Saturday Sabbaths in the Jewish calendar, there are seven additional high days in their calendar that are "Sabbaths." The first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, following Passover, is one of them.
A Walk Through the Bible The passage indicates that more than one Sabbath had passed in the intervening period between Passover and Sunday, so Passover could not have been a Friday:
A Walk Through the Bible • A Final Week Chronology Friday was at Bethany. Saturday was the triumphal Sunday the fig tree was cursed Monday the conspirators counseled
A Walk Through the Bible Tuesday was the Last Supper Wednesday was the crucifixion Thursday was the feast of Unleavened Bread Friday the women prepared the spices and so forth Saturday they all rested
A Walk Through the Bible • Also, Jesus specifically said He would spend three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. I believe that He says what He means and means what He says. (But in any case there are good scholars who still defend a Friday crucifixion. But we'll assume a Wednesday for our review.) • Sunday morning, "after the Sabbaths," the women came to the tomb.
A Walk Through the Bible • The Feast of First Fruits is "on the morrow after the Sabbath," after Passover. That morning, at the Temple, as smoke was furling up from the offerings of the Feast of First Fruits, a group of women were discovering an empty tomb. • Sunday He rose, as the "First Fruits" of the "First Resurrection," as recorded in all four of the Gospels.
A Walk Through the Bible THE TRIUMPHAL ENTRY • Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy king cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass."
A Walk Through the Bible Jesus rode the donkey from Bethany; westward over the Mount of Olives, and into the city Jerusalem was packed with tourists because the Torahrequired every able-bodied Jew to attend. The Book of Deuteronomy commanded three mandatory feasts:
A Walk Through the Bible the Feast of Unleavened Bread, Feast of Shavout(or Pentecost), and the Feast of Tabernacles. (They commonly call the three feasts in the spring, collectively, "Passover," but that includes Passover, the Feast of Unleavened Bread, and the Feast of First Fruits.)
A Walk Through the Bible The crowd had heard about Lazarus and they were excited to see Jesus, throwing down their coats and palm branches and singing Psalm 118, "Blessed be the King that cometh in the name of the Lord." This was the only day Jesus allowed Himself to be worshiped as King.
A Walk Through the Bible The people had tried earlier to make him King, but He slipped away saying, "Mine hour has not yet come" (John 6). But on this day; He not only allowed it; He arranged it and deliberately fulfilled Zechariah 9:9.
A Walk Through the Bible Any time we risk missing a key point, the Pharisees come to our rescue. The next verse says, "Some of the Pharisees from among the multitude said unto him, Master, rebuke your disciples." They knew that the crowd was proclaiming Jesus as the Messiah, the King. Jesus answered, "I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out."
A Walk Through the Bible When we examine Daniel 9 where the angel Gabriel told Daniel that from the commandment to restore and rebuild Jerusalem unto Messiah the King would be 173,880 days, sixty-nine weeks of 360-day years. If you do the arithmetic, you'll discover that the number of days between the Decree of ArtaxerxesLongimanus on March 12, 445 B.C., to the triumphal entry which happened on Apri16, A.D. 32, is precisely 173,880 days.
A Walk Through the Bible As Jesus approached the city He wept over it, saying, "If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in this thy day; the things which belong unto thy peace! but now they are hid fromthine eyes" (Luke 19:42). That was a dangerous declaration because now these insights are hidden from Israel as a nation "until the fullness of the Gentiles be come in."
A Walk Through the Bible • He also announced to them, "The days shall come upon thee, that thine enemies shall cast a trench about thee, and compass thee round, and keep thee in on every side, and shall lay thee even with the ground, and thy children within thee; and they shall not leave in thee one stone upon another" (Luke 19:43, 44).
A Walk Through the Bible Thirty-eight years later, the Fifth, Tenth, Twelfth, and Fifteenth Roman Legions laid on a nine-month siege in A.D. 70. One and half million men, women, and children were killed in that battle or died from the famine and disease that followed.
A Walk Through the Bible Why was Jerusalem destroyed? While there are many good answers to that, Jesus Himself explained, it was "because thou knewest not the time of thy visitation." Jesus held them accountable to know the last four verses of Danie19, and to know that the Messiah had come.
A Walk Through the Bible • THE LAST SUPPER AND THE GARDEN OF GETHSEMANE • The backdrop to the Last Supper was the plot to kill the Lord. The chief priests, scribes, and elders planned to kill Him, but they were not going to take Him on a feast day.
A Walk Through the Bible Why? Because they were fearful of the Romans. The Romans almost didn't care what you did as long as you didn't cause an uproar or an insurrection. They were interested in keeping peace in this unruly place called Judea.
A Walk Through the Bible It was in the Upper Room, as Jesus and the disciples were celebrating the Passover meal together, that Jesus let the cat out of the bag: "One of you will betray me." One by one, thedisciples asked, "Is it I, is it I?" and He announced, "It's the one who dips with me in the sop." He dipped the bread and handed it to Judas.
A Walk Through the Bible Who was calling the shots here? Jesuswas! Judas was now on the spot. He had notplanned to do it that night. It was a feast day; in fact, it was the highest feast day: But now Judas had a problem. Everybody knew now that a plot was afoot. It was "fish or cut bait," as we often say: Judas had to pull it off that night or it would all be over.
A Walk Through the Bible As you study this, you will see that every detail, from the riding of the donkey to the Crucifixion, was precisely timed. And the one orchestrating the entire drama was the Lord Himself.
A Walk Through the Bible They sang a hymn and finished three of the traditional four cups. (The fourth cup will be finished in Heaven at the Marriage Supper of the Lamb.) Then they went to Gethsemane for prayer. When the troops arrived, Jesus stepped forward, confronting them. "Whom seek ye?" He asked. They answered, 'Jesus of Nazareth." Jesus said, "I am He."
A Walk Through the Bible ." Here Jesus used His eternal name, "I Am," and the troops were overwhelmingly stunned. He asked them again, "Whom seek ye?" They answered again, 'Jesus of Nazareth." Jesus said, "I told you that I am He. Let these go their way:"
A Walk Through the Bible • Who was giving the orders? Jesus was! The Lord was in charge even of His own arrest and trial. He knew He was fulfilling an eternal destiny: • The crucifixion was not an accident; it was the fulfillment of His mission!
A Walk Through the Bible THE TRIALS OF JESUS • After Jesus was arrested in the Garden, there were six trials that night. There were three Jewish trials: before Annas, before Caiaphas, before the Sanhedrin. Later, there were three Roman trials; before Pilate, before Herod, and then before Pilate again. I would like to high- light some of the reasons why they were all illegal:
A Walk Through the Bible The binding of a prisoner before he was condemned was against the law Judges participated in the arrest of the accused. That was against the law. No legal transactions, including a trial, could be conducted at night. An acquittal could be announced the same day but any other verdict required a majority of two and had to come on a subsequent day:
A Walk Through the Bible No prisoner could be convicted on his own evidence. It was the duty of a judge to see that the interest of the accused was fully protected. This was what we would call a "kangaroo court." The use of violence during the trial was apparently unopposed by the judges.
A Walk Through the Bible The judges sought false witness against Jesus. In a Jewish court, the accused was to be presumed innocent until proven guilty by two or more witnesses. No witness was ever called for the defense. The court lacked the civil authority to condemn a man to death.
A Walk Through the Bible It was illegal to conduct a session of the court on a Feast day. This was not only a Feast day; but the high Feast day-it was Passover. The sentence was finally passed in the palace of the High Priest, but the law demanded that it be pronounced in the Temple in the hall of hewn stone. They broke the law in every detail.
A Walk Through the Bible The High Priest rent his garment. He was never permitted to tear his official robes. And without his priestly robe he couldn't have put Christ under oath, which of course he did.
A Walk Through the Bible What is also striking is that Pilate, the personal representative of the ruler of the world, pronounced Christ innocent. The Passover Lamb had to be without blemish.
A Walk Through the Bible There was a custom that on some holidays, the Romans would release one prisoner to the crowd. Pilate tried to offer Jesus to the crowd, but his gambit didn't work. Instead, they chose Barabbas, a rebel, murderer, and scoundrel. We don't know much about Barabbas except the following:
A Walk Through the Bible He stood under the righteous condemnation of the law. He knew that the one who was to take his cross and his place was innocent. .He knew that Jesus Christ was, for him, a true substitute. He knew that he had done nothing to merit going free while another took his place.
A Walk Through the Bible Think about Barabbas and Jesus. They were changing places. The murderer's bonds, curse, disgrace, and mortal agony were transferred to the righteous Jesus. The liberty, innocence, safety, and the well being of the Nazarene were transferred to the murderous Barabbas.
A Walk Through the Bible Where are you and I? We are in Barabbas's shoes. Everything that is true of Barabbas is true of us. We are in the same position Barabbas was in-al1 his rights, his immunity, are now ours.
A Walk Through the Bible THE CRUCIFIXION • As we saw earlier, death by crucifixion was invented by the Persians about 90 B.C. and then was widely adopted by the Romans. Basically it was death by asphyxiation. A victim had to press down on the spike through his feet to relieve the pressure on his lungs.
A Walk Through the Bible Although the pain of that was excruciating, it sometimes took as long as nine days to die. Crucifixion was deliberately designed to be agonizing and brutal. It was done publicly as an example to other citizens of the power of Rome.
A Walk Through the Bible Where was Jesus crucified? When Abraham offered Isaac, he went to Mount Moriah, which is a ridge system beyond the Temple Mount. The Temple Mount is about 741 meters above sea level, but if you follow this ridge to a peak, at 777 meters above sea level, you come to where Abraham offered Isaac and where Jesus was crucified: a place called Golgotha.
A Walk Through the Bible PROPHECIES OF THE FINAL WEEK • We looked at a few Old Testament prophecies quoted in the Gospels, but there are several specifically about the final week, some of which are listed below:
A Walk Through the Bible He would make a triumphal entry in Jerusalem-Zechariah 9:9, Psalm 118. He would be smitten like a shepherd-Zechariah 13. He would be betrayed for thirty pieces of silver-Zechariah 11:1-13: Psalm 41:9. He would be given vinegar and gall-Psalm 69:21.
A Walk Through the Bible They would cast lots for His garments-Psalm 22:18. His bones would not be broken-Exodus 12:46; Numbers 9: 12; Psalm 34:20. His side would be pierced-Zechariah 12:10; Psalm 22:16. He would die among malefactors-Isaiah 53:9, 12.
A Walk Through the Bible His dying words were foretold-Psalm 22:1,31. He would be buried by a rich man-Isaiah 53:9. He would rise on the third day-Jonah 1:17; Matthew 12:39,40. Also, Genesis 22:4 with Hebrews 11:19.
A Walk Through the Bible His resurrection would be followed by the destruction of Jerusalem-Daniel 9, 11,12. • What really held Jesus to that cross? It wasn't the nails!
A Walk Through the Bible He was crucified on a cross of wood; Yet He made the hill on which it stood! • At any time he could have said, "Enough! I'm out of here!" What held him to the cross was His love for us.
A Walk Through the Bible It was customary to display the indictment on the cross so that people seeing this grotesque execution would know why the victim was being punished. I am impressed that Pilate was personally on site, personally wrote it, and put it on the cross. He wrote in Hebrew, Greek, and Latin, “Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews.”