JESUS IS CRUCIFIED
Matthew 27:31-66; Mark 15:20-47; Luke 23:26-56; John 19:16-42
Soldiers took Jesus to the top of a hill to crucify him. They nailed his hands and feet to a cross. They set the cross up and waited for Jesus to die. In those days the Roman government killed many criminals this way. People hung on crosses until their hearts stopped and they died.
As the soldiers crucified Jesus, he prayed, “Father, forgive them. They don’t know what they are doing.”
Jesus hung on the cross for three hours until it was noon. Then the sky became totally dark for three hours. After that Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”
God the Father forsook his Son Jesus while Jesus hung on the cross. Why? Jesus never did anything wrong. He always did what God the Father wanted him to do. The Father loved Jesus. But the Father also hates sin. When Jesus died on the cross, he died to take the punishment for the sin of all people. When the Father saw Jesus on the cross, he saw people’s sin. While Jesus hung on the cross, God the Father had to forsake him.
Finally Jesus said, “It is finished.” Then he died.
Suddenly, there was an earthquake. A soldier and others who saw Jesus die said, “Jesus really is the Son of God.”
Then soldiers came to break the legs of the men on the crosses. If they broke a person’s legs, he would die quickly. But when they came to Jesus, they found out that he was already dead. So they didn’t break Jesus’ legs.
A man named Joseph came to Pilate. Joseph asked to take Jesus’ body away and bury it. Joseph had been following Jesus secretly. Joseph took the body and wrapped it in strips of cloth. He put the body in a new tomb, which was like a cave. Then some people rolled a huge stone in front of the door.
The next day the religious leaders went to see Pilate. They said, “Sir, while Jesus was alive he said that he would be dead for three days. Then he said he would become alive again. So give the order to seal the tomb. If you don’t, his followers may come steal the body. Then they may tell people that Jesus is alive again.”
Pilate gave the order. They sealed the tomb. Then Roman soldiers stayed to guard the tomb. That way no one could come and steal Jesus’ body.
Present Past Past Participle Future
hang hung or hanged has hung or has hanged will hang
forsake forsook has forsaken will forsake
steal stole has stolen will steal
- As the soldiers crucified Jesus, what did he pray and ask God to do for them?
- At what time did the sky become totally dark? How long did it stay dark?
- When God the Father saw Jesus on the cross, why did he have to forsake him?
- Why didn’t the soldiers break Jesus’ legs?
- What did the religious leaders ask Pilate to do so that Jesus’ disciples couldn’t steal his body?
- Why did they think Jesus’ followers would want to steal Jesus’ body?
- Who guarded Jesus’ tomb?