September 28, 2007

Mark 15.16-39

Then the soldiers took him inside the courtyard (the Governor's headquarters) and called together the whole company. They dressed him in purple, and having plaited a crown of thorns, placed it on his head. Then they began to salute him with "Hail, King of the Jews!" They beat him about the head with a cane and spat upon him, and then knelt and paid mock homage to him. When they'd finished their mockery, they stripped him of the purple and dressed him in his own clothes."

Then they took him out to crucify him. A man called Simon, from Cyrene, the father of Alexander and Rufus, was passing by on his way in from the country, and they pressed him into service to carry his cross.

They brought him to the place called Golgotha, which means "Place of a Skull." He was offered drugged wine, but he would not take it. Then they fastened him to the cross. They divided his clothes among them, casting lots to decide what each should have.

The hour of the crucifiction was nine in the morning, and the inscription giving the charge against him read, "The King of the Jews." Two bandits were crucified with him, one on his right and one on his left.

The passers-by hurled abuse at him. "Aha!" they cried, wagging their heads, "You would pull the Temple down, would you, and build it in three days? Come down from the cross and save yourself!" So too the chief priests and the doctors of the Law jested with one another: "He save others," they said, "but he cannot save himself. Let the Messiah, the King of Israel, come down now from the cross. If we see that, then we shall believe?" Even those who were crucified with him taunted him.

At midday darkness fell over the whole land, which lasted till three in the afternoon; and at three Jesus cried aloud, "Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani," which means, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?"

Some of the passers-by, on hearing this, said "Hark, he is calling Elijah." A man came running with a sponge, soaked in sour wine, on the end of a cane, and held it to his lips. "Let us see," he said, "if Elijah is coming to take him down."

Then Jesus gave a loud cry and died.

And the curtain of the Temple was torn in two from top to bottom.

And when the centurian who was standing opposite him saw how he died, he said, "Truly this man was a son of God."

September 25, 2007

Mark 15.6-15

At the festival season the Governor used to release one prisoner at the people's request. As it happened, the man known as Barabbas was then in custody with the rebels who had committed murder in the rising. When the crowd appeared asking for the usual favor, Pilate replied, "Do you wish for me to release for you the King of the Jews?" For he knew it was out of spite that they had brought Jesus before him.

But the chief priests incited the crowd to ask him to release Barabbas rather than Jesus.

Pilate spoke to them again: "Then what shall I do with the King of the Jews?"

They shouted back "Crucify him!"

"Why? What harm has he done?" Pilate asked.

They shouted all the louder, "Crucify him!" So Pilate, in his desire to satisfy the mob, released Barabbas to them, and had Jesus flogged and handed over to be crucified.

September 20, 2007

Mark 15.1-5

When morning came the chief priests, having made their plan with the elders and lawyers and all the Council, put Jesus in chains; then they led him away and handed him over to Pilate.

Pilate asked him, "Are you the king of the Jews?"

He replied, "The words are yours."

And the chief priests brought many charges against him.

Pilate questioned him again: "Have you nothing to say in your defence? You see how many charges they are bringing against you."

But to Pilate's astonishment, Jesus made no reply.

September 15, 2007

Mark 14.65->

Some began to spit on him, blindfolded him, and struck him with their fists, crying out, "Prophesy!" And the High Priest's men set upon him with blows.

Meanwhile Peter was still in the courtyard downstairs. One of the High Priest's serving-maids came by and saw him there warming himself. She looked into his face and said, "You were there too, with this man from Nazareth, this Jesus."

But he denied it. "I know nothing," he said. "I do not understand what you mean."

Then he went outside into the porch, and the maid saw him there again and began to say to the bystanders, "He is one of them;" and again he denied it.

Again, a little later, the bystanders said to Peter, "Surely you are one of them. You must be; you are a Galilean."

At this he burst out into curses, and with an oath he said, "I do not know this man you speak of."

Then the cock crew a second time; and Peter remembered how Jesus had said to him, "Before the cock cries twice you will disown me three times." And he burst into tears.

September 10, 2007

Mark 14.53-64

And they led Jesus to the High Priest, and all the chief priests and the elders and the scribes were assembled.

And Peter had followed him at a distance, right into the courtyard of the High Priest; and he was sitting with the guards, and warming himself at the fire.

Now the chief priests and the whole council sought testimony against Jesus to put him to death; but they found none.

For many bore false witness against him, and their witness did not agree. And some stood up and bore false witness against him, saying "We heard him say, 'I will destroy this Temple that is made with hands, and in three days I will build another, not made with hands.' "

Yet not even so did their testimony agree. And the High Priest stood up in their midst, and asked Jesus, "Have you no answer to make? What is it that these men testify against you?"

But he was silent and made no answer.

Again the High Priest asked him, "Are you the Messiah, the son of the Blessed?"

And Jesus said, "I am, and you will see the son of man seated at the right hand of Power, and coming with the clouds of Heaven."

And the High Priest tore his garments, and said, "Why do we still need witnesses? You have heard his blasphemy. What is your decision?" And they all condemned him as deserving death.

September 02, 2007

Mark 14.43-52

Suddenly, while he was still speaking, Judas, one of the Twelve, appeared, and with him was a crowd armed with swords & cudgels, sent by the chief priests, lawyers and elders. Now the traitor had agreed with them upon a signal: "The one I kiss is your man; seize him and get him safely away." When he reached the spot, he stepped forward at once and said to Jesus, "Rabbi," and kissed him. Then they seized him and held him fast.

One of the party drew his sword, and struck at the High Priest's servant, cutting off his ear.

Then Jesus spoke: "Do you take me for a bandit, that you have come out with swords and cudgels to arrest me? Day after day I was within your reach as I taught in the Temple, and you did not lay hands upon me. But let the scriptures be fulfilled."

Then the disciples all deserted him and ran away. Among those following was a young man with nothing on but a linen cloth. They tried to seize him, but he slipped out of the linen cloth and ran away naked.