“June 17–23. Matthew 27; Mark 15; Luke 23; John 19: ‘It Is Finished’” Come, Follow Me—For Individuals and Families: New Testament 2019 (2019)
“June 17–23. Matthew 27; Mark 15; Luke 23; John 19,” Come, Follow Me—For Individuals and Families: 2019
Record Your Impressions
In every word and deed, Jesus Christ exemplified pure love—what the Apostle Paul called charity (see 1 Corinthians 13). At no time was this more evident than during the final hours of the Savior’s mortal life. His dignified silence in the face of false accusations demonstrated that He “is not easily provoked” (1 Corinthians 13:5). His willingness to submit to scourging, mocking, and crucifixion—while restraining His power to end His torments—showed that He “suffereth long” and “beareth all things” (1 Corinthians 13:4, 7). His compassion toward His mother and His mercy toward His crucifiers—even during His own incomparable suffering—revealed that He “seeketh not [His] own” (1 Corinthians 13:5). In His final moments on earth, Jesus was doing what He had done throughout His mortal ministry—teaching us by showing us. Indeed, charity is “the pure love of Christ” (Moroni 7:47).
Although the Savior had power to call down “legions of angels” (Matthew 26:53), He voluntarily chose to endure unjust trials, cruel mocking, and unimaginable physical pain. Why did He do it? “Because of his loving kindness,” Nephi testified, “and his long-suffering towards the children of men” (1 Nephi 19:9).
You might begin your study of the Savior’s final hours by reading 1 Nephi 19:9. Where in Matthew 27; Mark 15; Luke 23; and John 19 do you find examples of each thing that Nephi said Jesus would suffer?
“[They] judge him to be a thing of naught”
“They scourge him”
“They smite him”
“They spit upon him”
Which passages help you feel the “loving kindness” of Heavenly Father and Jesus toward you? Which of the attributes demonstrated by the Savior are you inspired to develop more fully?
See also “Jesus Is Condemned before Pilate” and “Jesus Is Scourged and Crucified” (videos, LDS.org).
While Jesus had endured mocking throughout His ministry, it grew more intense during His scourging and Crucifixion. But this mocking could not change the truth: Jesus is the Son of God. As you read about the humiliation Jesus endured, think about the opposition and mocking His work faces today. What insights do you gain about enduring opposition? What impresses you about the centurion’s words in Matthew 27:54?
Elder Jeffrey R. Holland offered the following insight: “I testify … that a perfect Father did not forsake His Son in that hour. … Nevertheless, that the supreme sacrifice of His Son might be as complete as it was voluntary and solitary, the Father briefly withdrew from Jesus the comfort of His Spirit, the support of His personal presence. … For [the Savior’s] Atonement to be infinite and eternal, He had to feel what it was like to die not only physically but spiritually, to sense what it was like to have the divine Spirit withdraw, leaving one feeling totally, abjectly, hopelessly alone” (“None Were with Him,” Ensign or Liahona, May 2009, 87–88).
How do you feel when you read the Savior’s words in Luke 23:34? (see the insight provided by the Joseph Smith Translation in footnote c). Referring to the Savior’s words, President Henry B. Eyring taught: “We must forgive and bear no malice toward those who offend us. The Savior set the example from the cross. … We do not know the hearts of those who offend us” (“That We May Be One,” Ensign, May 1998, 68). How can this verse help you if you have trouble forgiving someone?
In the scriptures, the word paradise usually means “a place of peace and happiness in the postmortal spirit world”—a place reserved for the righteous. The Prophet Joseph Smith taught that the word paradise in Luke 23:43 “is a mistranslation; the Lord actually said that the thief would be with Him in the world of spirits” (True to the Faith, 111; see also Joseph Smith, Journal, June 11, 1843, josephsmithpapers.org). In the spirit world, the thief would hear the gospel preached.
As you read the scriptures with your family, the Spirit can help you know what principles to emphasize and discuss in order to meet the needs of your family. Here are some suggestions:
Even though Judas knew Jesus personally, he “turned away from [Jesus], and was offended because of his words” (Joseph Smith Translation, Mark 14:31 [in Mark 14:10, footnote a]). What might cause people who seem to have strong testimonies to turn away from the Savior? How can we stay true to Jesus Christ?
Why did Pilate deliver Jesus to be crucified, even though he knew Jesus was innocent? What lessons do we learn from Pilate’s experience about standing up for what we know is right? It might be helpful for your family to role-play scenarios that allow them to practice standing up for what is right.
Perhaps you could assign one or more of the statements the Savior made on the cross, found in these verses, to each family member and ask them to share what they learn about the Savior and His mission.
How has reading about the Crucifixion strengthened our testimonies that Jesus is the “Son of God”?
What do we learn from these verses about how we should love and support family members?
For more ideas for teaching children, see this week’s outline in Come, Follow Me—For Primary.