“The descent of the Son of man reaches its lowest point in a human tomb, but also finds there its passage and transition to his ascent to glory, though the signs that point out this transition in Jesus’ entombment only become visible in the light that is still to come, ‘on the first day of the week,’ the first words of the next chapter.” (Herman Ridderbos, The Gospel of John: A Theological Commentary, p. 628).
“We can say, then, that the line of Christ’s humiliation does indeed descend to the grave, but that it there effects the strength which will exalt Him again. . . . And he who is buried with Him has already been glorified with Him, arisen with Him, and been placed in heaven.” (K. Schilder, Christ Crucified, p. 560).
Quotes in preparation for this evening’s Bible study on John 19:38-42 at Trinity Presbyterian Church of the OPC.
“From now on, because of Jesus’ self-offering in death, he is the one whom no one seeking salvation can bypass. In the one who was pierced (Zechariah 12) God places everyone before the great decision, just as that occurs in the man of sorrows of Isaiah 53 (cf. Jn. 12:38) and in the Son of man who had to be lifted up on the cross as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness (Jn. 3:14).” (Herman Ridderbos, The Gospel of John: A Theological Commentary, p. 624).
“The evangelical comfort merged with a sinister threat. Not a bone will be broken . . . that is the comfort. Golgotha is charged with God’s redeeming providence. But they shall see what was done here—that is the threat. There is no escape from this place save by lamenting their own sin.” (K. Schilder, Christ Crucified, p. 551.)
(In preparation for the Wednesday evening Bible study at Trinity Presbyterian Church of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church.)
“Mary will from this moment on step back as his mother and uniquely reflect the image of the community that remains behind on earth. The disciple whom Jesus loves no less significantly represents those whom Jesus has bound to himself from the beginning to be his witnesses and to continue his work on earth. . . . It is in this light that we must view Jesus’ final statements to these two and the words with which the Evangelist concludes this passage: ‘And from that hour the disciple took her into his own home.’ This is not merely a historical note pertaining to Mary’s place of residence after Jesus’ death but a salvation-historical reference—in the manner of the Fourth Gospel—to the new ‘family of God’ that from that hour took form as a result of Jesus’ final testamentary disposition.”
(Herman Ridderbos, The Gospel of John: A Theological Commentary, pp. 613-614.)
Wednesday evening Bible study at Trinity Presbyterian Church, OPC, focuses on John 19.
“So his [Pilate’s] last word, brief and to the point, was ‘What I have written I have written.’ Having said that he left them with their ‘king.’ In this remarkable detail, which occurs only in John, we see the continuation of the line that runs through the entire trial before Pilate: he still can still not exercise any power other than what has been ‘given from above’ (vs. 11). What he was unwilling to undo—let the crucified Jesus of Nazareth be identified as the Messiah, the king of Israel—is, in fact, the pivotal issue in the entire passion narrative. And this is so in what follows, as Pilate and ‘the Jews’ recede into the background and the focus is shifted to the crucified Jesus himself.” (Herman Ridderbos, The Gospel of John: A Theological Commentary, p. 607).
“There comes a time in God’s dealings with sinners when He has nothing more to say, when something more powerful than words will be necessary if they are to be converted. And that is usually his last witness to them. If the utter silence of God does not impress them, then there is nothing left for him to do but to forsake them forever.” (Peter Eldersveld, Nothing but the Gospel, page 57).
Quote used in the reflection in preparation for the message for April 9.