Luke 23:18-43
by Brian Knitter

It seemed that everyone at the assembly wanted Jesus dead. They even chose Him over a murderer when given the chance. How could the crowd who had shouted "Hosanna!" only one week ago turn on Him so quickly? It wasn't the same crowd.

A lot of "between the lines" stuff happens throughout the Last Supper and Crucifixion parts of the Gospels. When reading these parts of the Gospels, it is especially important to think of: 1) the time; 2) the location; 3) prophesies; 4) Bible quotes from other books. Remember, Jesus' trial so far has taken place at night in the cover of darkness. The Jewish religious leaders wanted it this way because they were not working above the board. The only people who would have been up at this hour of the night were those whom the Jewish leaders had awoken themselves -- their own supporters. The people who shouted "Hosanna!" were not a part of the crowd who yelled "crucify!" Jesus' trial was unfair from the start. There were not two witnesses who could corroborate on a story to convict Him. Jesus was not allowed to speak, and He had no representation. The trial was a sham. When Jesus was taken to Pilate, Pilate announced Jesus' innocence on three different occasions! And no person in their right mind would release a known killer back into the population when a peace-loving Teacher was another option, yet that's what happened. Pilate offered to free Jesus (of Nazareth) or the killer (Jesus) Barabbas (whose first name was indeed Jesus and last name meant "of the father." Chew on that for a while...). The Jewish leaders would stop at nothing to see Jesus dead. Jesus was lead out to be crucified shortly after dawn (quoting Hosea 10:8 as He went, see v. 30), just as the shop keepers were setting up for the day. By 9AM, Jesus was on a cross. Most of the city would have been waking up, having breakfast, and would have been totally unaware about what had transpired overnight.

(To see some awesome prophesy fulfillment stuff, re-read v. 34-39, then turn to Psalm 22:6-18. Cool huh?)