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Gospel of Luke

Gospel of Luke

Gospel of Luke Chapter 23:26-49 Summary

The Crucifixion

  • Jesus is being led toward his crucifixion with a huge group of people—including women—following behind.
  • Simon, a guy from Cyrene (in North Africa), is forced to carry the crossbeam for Jesus.
  • When they get to a place called "The Skull" (23:33 NRSV) or "Calvary" (KJV), Jesus is crucified with two other criminals, one on each side.
  • The Jewish people are standing there watching, while the political elite ridicule him: "He saved others; let him save himself if he is the Messiah of God, his chosen one!" (23:35) The Roman soldiers pipe in, offering him sour wine and shouting, "If you are the King of the Jews, save yourself!" (23:37).
  • They're playing upon the inscription over Jesus that reads, "This is the King of the Jews" (23:38).
  • One of the criminals joins in all the fun and tells Jesus to save them, too, if he is the Messiah.
  • The other criminal sticks up for Jesus. Doesn't he have any respect for God? They've committed real crimes, which are deserving of a punishment such as this. But Jesus has done nothing wrong.
  • Then he tells Jesus to do him the tiny favor of keeping him in mind when he enters the kingdom.
  • Jesus responds, "Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in Paradise" (23:43).
  • Around lunch time, darkness covers the whole earth for about three hours. That's pretty ominous for the middle of the day.
  • With a loud voice Jesus cries his final words: "Father, into your hands I commend my spirit" (23:46). He's quoting Psalm 31:5. That's a pretty poetic way to end things.
  • A Roman centurion sees this event, gives God due props, and says, "Certainly this man was innocent" (23:47). Too late.
  • Everyone else in the crowd is absolutely broken up.

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