Mark 15

1 Peter 2:24; Isaiah 53:5, 9-10.
(Only God’s own Word can form the conclusion of this scene.)

1 And straightway in the morning the chief priests held a consultation with the elders and scribes and the whole council, and bound Jesus, and carried him away, and delivered him to Pilate.

2 And Pilate asked him, Art thou the King of the Jews? And he answering said unto him, Thou sayest it.

3 And the chief priests accused him of many things: but he answered nothing.

4 And Pilate asked him again, saying, Answerest thou nothing? behold how many things they witness against thee.

5 But Jesus yet answered nothing; so that Pilate marvelled.

6 Now at that feast he released unto them one prisoner, whomsoever they desired.

7 And there was one named Barabbas, which lay bound with them that had made insurrection with him, who had committed murder in the insurrection.

8 And the multitude crying aloud began to desire him to do as he had ever done unto them.

9 But Pilate answered them, saying, Will ye that I release unto you the King of the Jews?

10 For he knew that the chief priests had delivered him for envy.

11 But the chief priests moved the people, that he should rather release Barabbas unto them.

12 And Pilate answered and said again unto them, What will ye then that I shall do unto him whom ye call the King of the Jews?

13 And they cried out again, Crucify him.

14 Then Pilate said unto them, Why, what evil hath he done? And they cried out the more exceedingly, Crucify him.

15 ¶ And so Pilate, willing to content the people, released Barabbas unto them, and delivered Jesus, when he had scourged him, to be crucified.

16 And the soldiers led him away into the hall, called Praetorium; and they call together the whole band.

17 And they clothed him with purple, and platted a crown of thorns, and put it about his head,

18 And began to salute him, Hail, King of the Jews!

19 And they smote him on the head with a reed, and did spit upon him, and bowing their knees worshipped him.

20 And when they had mocked him, they took off the purple from him, and put his own clothes on him, and led him out to crucify him.

21 And they compel one Simon a Cyrenian, who passed by, coming out of the country, the father of Alexander and Rufus, to bear his cross.

22 And they bring him unto the place Golgotha, which is, being interpreted, The place of a skull.

23 And they gave him to drink wine mingled with myrrh: but he received it not.

24 And when they had crucified him, they parted his garments, casting lots upon them, what every man should take.

25 And it was the third hour, and they crucified him.

26 And the superscription of his accusation was written over, THE KING OF THE JEWS.

27 And with him they crucify two thieves; the one on his right hand, and the other on his left.

28 And the scripture was fulfilled, which saith, And he was numbered with the transgressors.

29 And they that passed by railed on him, wagging their heads, and saying, Ah, thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days,

30 Save thyself, and come down from the cross.

31 Likewise also the chief priests mocking said among themselves with the scribes, He saved others; himself he cannot save.

32 Let Christ the King of Israel descend now from the cross, that we may see and believe. And they that were crucified with him reviled him.

33 And when the sixth hour was come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour.

34 And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

35 And some of them that stood by, when they heard it, said, Behold, he calleth Elias.

36 And one ran and filled a spunge full of vinegar, and put it on a reed, and gave him to drink, saying, Let alone; let us see whether Elias will come to take him down.

37 And Jesus cried with a loud voice, and gave up the ghost.

38 And the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom.

39 ¶ And when the centurion, which stood over against him, saw that he so cried out, and gave up the ghost, he said, Truly this man was the Son of God.

40 There were also women looking on afar off: among whom was Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James the less and of Joses, and Salome;

41 (Who also, when he was in Galilee, followed him, and ministered unto him;) and many other women which came up with him unto Jerusalem.

42 ¶ And now when the even was come, because it was the preparation, that is, the day before the sabbath,

43 Joseph of Arimathaea, an honourable counsellor, which also waited for the kingdom of God, came, and went in boldly unto Pilate, and craved the body of Jesus.

44 And Pilate marvelled if he were already dead: and calling unto him the centurion, he asked him whether he had been any while dead.

45 And when he knew it of the centurion, he gave the body to Joseph.

46 And he bought fine linen, and took him down, and wrapped him in the linen, and laid him in a sepulchre which was hewn out of a rock, and rolled a stone unto the door of the sepulchre.

47 And Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses beheld where he was laid.

Mark 15:1-21 – The Choice of the Multitude

   The hurried consultation of the evening was followed by the more formal meeting of the early morning; and even the decision made then had  no binding force till ratified by Pilate, the Roman governor, who happened at that time to be in Jerusalem. John gives a more detailed account of this memorable interview, John 18:33-38. Our Lord did not plead His own cause but committed Himself to the One who judges righteously, I Peter 2:23. It was only when Pilate asked questions for his own guidance that Jesus sought to help him and then He relapsed into silence. “Like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened He not His mouth” (Acts 8:32). Men like Barabbas, embodiments of brute force, are ever the darlings of the crowd. By narrowing the people’s choice to the murderer and Jesus, Pilate expected to bring them to demand the release of the lover and helper of men. But he failed to gauge the malice of which men are capable. Perhaps he hoped that the marks of extreme suffering would soften their hatred. As well appeal to a pack of hungry wolves! His purple stood for royalty won by blood; thorns, because His diadem was won by suffering; the reed, because he can wield the frailest life to momentous issues. Happy is the man who shares Christ’s cross! Simon was an African, probably black, and this incident changed his life, Romans 16:13. – Through the Bible Day by Day

Mark 15:22-47 – A King upon His Cross

Our Lord refused to drink the potion prepared by the women of Jerusalem, in order to stupefy those who were crucified and so deaden the sense of pain, because He would drain the cup to its dregs. It was nine o’clock in the morning when He was nailed to the cross. His persecutors were, as they thought, destroying the Temple of which He had spoken in John 2:19, and making its restoration impossible. In fact, however, they were giving Him the opportunity of fulfilling His great prediction. He saved others; Himself He cannot save. Nature veiled her face from that awful spectacle. Christ was not really forsaken, but as our Redeemer he passed under the dark shadow of human sin.  The access to the Holy of Holies is now forever free through the entry of our great High Priest. See Hebrews 9:7-8. What love inspired the women, Mark 15:40, to brave the horrors of the scene! And how good to see that God cares for the body as well as for the spirit of His beloved! For Joseph, see Matthew 27:57 and Luke 23:50-51. Born of the Virgin’s womb our Lord was buried in a virgin tomb. – Through the Bible Day by Day

Mark 15:34—My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?

   This was the darkest hour of the Savior’s human life. Lover and friend stood away from Him; and those for whom his blood was being shed covered Him with contumely and abuse. Let us consider:–
   His quotation of Scripture.—He is quoting Psalm 22:1, which is truly known as the Psalm of the Cross. It may be that He recited to Himself that wonderful elegy, in which David was to anticipate so minutely the sufferings of his Lord. What meaning there was for those dying lips in Psalm 22:7: “All they that see Me laugh Me to scorn”; in Psalm 22:13: “They gaped upon Me”; in Psalm 22:14: “All my bones are out of joint”; in Psalm 22:17: “I may tell all my bones”; or in Psalm 22:18: “They part my garments and cast lots.” What sacred feet trod those well-worn steps!
   His vicarious sufferings.—There is no possible way of understanding, or interpreting, these words, except by believing that He was suffering for sins not his own; that He was being made sin for us; that He was bearing away the sin of the world. It is not for a moment conceivable that the Father could have ever seemed to forsake his well-beloved Son, unless He had stood as the Representative of a guilty race, and during those hours of midday, midnight had become the propitiation for the sins of the world.
   His perfect example of the way of Faith.—In doing the Father’s will, He yielded up his life even to the death of the cross. But amid it all He said, “My God, my God.” He still held to the Father with his two hands. And his faith conquered. The clouds broke; the clear heaven appeared; He died with a serene faith. “My God” was exchanged for “Father, into thy hands” (Luke 23:46). – Our Daily Homily