1 Then the entire group of them [i.e., of the Jewish elders, priests and law experts] got up [from their Council meeting] and took Jesus to [governor] Pilate. 2 They began bringing accusations against Him, saying, "We discovered this man misleading the people of our nation and telling them not to pay taxes to Caesar, and claiming that he himself was the Messiah, a king!"
3 So, Pilate asked Him, "Are you the king of the Jews?" And Jesus answered him, "You have said so."
4 Then Pilate said to the leading priests and to the crowds [that had gathered], "I do not find anything wrong with this man."
5 But the group became more insistent, saying, "He is stirring up the people and teaching [these things] throughout all Judea. He began [doing this] in Galilee and [has continued it] even to this place [i.e., Jerusalem]."
6 When Pilate heard this, he asked if the man were a Galilean.
6 PM on Friday]. 7 And when he realized that Jesus was under Herod's [political] jurisdiction, he sent Him to Herod, who was also in Jerusalem at that time. 8 Now Herod was very pleased when he saw Jesus for he had wanted to see Him for a long time. He had heard [things] about Jesus and [now] hoped to see Him perform a miracle. 9 So, he asked Him many questions, but Jesus did not respond to any [of them]. 10 Then the leading priests and experts in the law of Moses stood up and viciously charged Him [i.e., with false accusations]. 11 Then Herod and his soldiers treated Jesus with contempt and mocked Him. They dressed Him in a luxurious robe and then sent Him back to Pilate. 12 So, Herod and Pilate became mutual friends that very day. (Now before this they had been enemies).
13 Then Pilate called together the leading priests, the [Jewish] leaders and the people, 14 and said to them, "You brought this man to me, claiming he was inciting people to disloyalty [i.e., to the government]. And look, I questioned him in front of you people but did not find him guilty of the charges you 15 or Herod have brought [against him]. For Herod sent him back to us and now I find that he has not done anything deserving of death. 16 Therefore, I will have him punished and [then] release him." {{Some ancient manuscripts include verse 17 For Pilate was required to release one prisoner to the people at the [Passover] Festival}}.
18 But the people all joined together shouting, "Take this man [i.e., Jesus] and release Barabbas to us [instead]." 19 [Now] Barabbas was a person who had been thrown into prison for [inciting] a rebellion in the city [of Jerusalem] and for committing murder.
20 Then Pilate spoke to them again [because] he wanted to release Jesus, 21 but they continued shouting, "Crucify him, crucify him."
22 So, Pilate called out to them a third time, "Why [should he be crucified]; what wrong has this man done? I have not found any reason for putting him to death, so I will punish him and [then] release him."
23 But the people loudly demanded that Jesus be crucified. And their shouting won out. 24 So, Pilate issued the sentence the people were demanding 25 and released the man they had asked for [i.e., Barabbas], who had been thrown into prison for [inciting] a rebellion and committing murder. But he turned Jesus over to the people do with Him whatever they wanted.
26 Then, as they were leading Jesus away, the soldiers [See Mark 15:16-21] grabbed hold of a man named Simon, from Cyrene [Note: This was a city in the northern African country of Libya], who was coming in from the countryside, and placed the cross [i.e., probably only the cross-beam portion] on him, so he could carry it while following Jesus. 27 A large crowd of people followed Jesus, including some women who wailed [in grief] and mourned over His plight. 28 But Jesus turned and said to them, "Daughters of Jerusalem [i.e., women citizens], do not cry over me, but cry over yourselves and your children. 29 For look, the time will come when people will be saying, 'Those [women] who are without children and who have never given birth or nursed babies are [truly] happy!' 30 Then they will begin to say to the mountains [Hosea 10:8], 'Fall on us,' and to the hills, 'Cover us [up].' 31 For if people are doing these things [to me] while the [leaves of the] tree are green [i.e., to someone innocent of wrongdoing], what will they do when [the leaves] are dried up [i.e., to the sinful Jews of Jerusalem]?"
32 And two other men, who were criminals, were also led out with Jesus to be put to death. 33 And when they came to the place called "The Skull" [Note: The Latin word for this place is "Calvary"], they crucified Him there, along with the criminals, one at His right side and one at His left. 34 Then Jesus called out, "Father, forgive these people [i.e., the ones responsible for crucifying Him], for they do not know [i.e., realize] what they are doing." Then the soldiers [See John 19:23] divided Jesus' clothing among them by gambling for them.
35 People stood [around] watching [all this], while the leaders even sneered at Him, saying, "He saved other people; [now] let him save himself [i.e., from dying] if he [really] is the Christ, God's specially chosen one." 36 The soldiers also mocked Him; they came to Him, offering Him sour wine [to drink], 37 saying, "If you [really] are the King of the Jews, save yourself."
38 There was an inscription above Him [i.e., on the upright portion of the cross], stating, "This is the king of the Jews."
39 Then one of the criminals, who was hanging [on a cross also] spoke abusively to Him, saying, "Are you not the Christ [i.e., God's specially chosen one]? [If you are], then save yourself and us."
40 But the other criminal spoke harshly to the first one, saying, "Do you not even have any fear of God [left], since you [too] are experiencing the same sentence of condemnation? 41 And for us it is truly a just sentence, for we are getting back what we deserve for our actions, but this man has not done anything wrong." 42 Then he said, "Jesus, remember [to be merciful to] me when you come into your kingdom."
43 Then Jesus said to him, "Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in Paradise [Note: This is a place in God's presence, referred to as "the third heaven" (II Cor. 12:2-4), and where overcomers will be able to eat from "the tree of life" (Rev. 2:7)]."
44 Now when it was about twelve o'clock noon, darkness came over all the land until three o'clock in the afternoon, for 45 the sun's light failed to shine. Then the Temple curtain became torn down the middle. 46 Jesus called out in a loud voice, "Father, I commit my spirit into your hands." And after He said this, He gave up His spirit [i.e., to God in death].
47 And when the military officer in charge of one hundred men saw what had happened, he honored God [by] saying, "Certainly this man had [always] done what was right." 48 And after the crowds that had gathered to witness this sight saw what had happened they left, beating their chests [i.e., as an expression of anguish over witnessing Jesus' death]. 49 And all of those who knew Him, as well as the women who had followed Him from Galilee [See Matt. 27:55-56], watched all this from a distance.
50 And just then [there appeared] a member of the [Jewish] Council named Joseph from the city of Arimathea. He was a good man who tried to do what was right, 51 (and who had not agreed with the decision and action of the [Jewish] Council). He was expecting the kingdom of God [to appear soon]. 52 [So], Joseph went to [governor] Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. 53 [Upon receiving permission] he took it down [from the cross] and wrapped it in a linen cloth, and placed it in a grave site, cut out of [a ledge of] rock, where no one had ever been buried. 54 This happened on the Day of Preparation [for the Passover Festival], as the Sabbath day was about to begin [i.e., shortly before 55 The women who had accompanied Jesus from Galilee followed behind [those carrying the body] and saw where the grave site was and how His body was placed in it. 56 So, they returned [home] and prepared spices and [aromatic] oils [i.e., for embalming Jesus' body]. Then they rested on the Sabbath day according to the [fourth] commandment. [See Ex. 20:10].