Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

John 19:1

Pilate then took Jesus and scourged Him.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Jesus, the Christ;   Punishment;   Scourging;   Slander;   Thompson Chain Reference - Nation, the;   Pilate, Pontius;   Pontius Pilate;   Punishments;   Scourging;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Prophecies Respecting Christ;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Scourge;   Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Christianity;   Humiliation of Christ;   Jesus Christ;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Crucifixion;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Cross;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Scourge;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Crucifixion;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Endurance;   Eschatology;   Punishment (2);   Scourge, Scourging;   Synagogue (2);   Trial of Jesus;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Scourging;   Smith Bible Dictionary - John, Gospel of;   Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary - Pilate;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Chronology of the New Testament;   Jesus Christ, the Arrest and Trial of;   Johannine Theology, the;   Pilate, Pontius;  
Devotionals:
Every Day Light - Devotion for October 22;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

Pilate took Jesus, and scourged him - That is, caused him to be scourged: for we cannot with Bede suppose that he scourged him with his own hand.

As our Lord was scourged by order of Pilate, it is probable he was scourged in the Roman manner, which was much more severe than that of the Jews. The latter never gave more than thirty-nine blows; for the law had absolutely forbidden a man to be abused, or his flesh cut in this chastisement, Deuteronomy 25:3. The common method of whipping or flogging in some places, especially that of a military kind, is a disgrace to the nation where it is done, to the laws, and to humanity. See Matthew 27:26, and the note there. Though it was customary to scourge the person who was to be crucified, yet it appears that Pilate had another end in view by scourging our Lord. He hoped that this would have satisfied the Jews, and that he might then have dismissed Jesus. This appears from Luke 23:16.

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Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on John 19:1". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/john-19.html. 1832.

Coffman Commentaries on the Bible

This chapter continues the narrative of the trials and the ultimate triumph of the Jewish leaders over the stubborn will of Pilate, who under the duress of political blackmail and mob violence at last gave in to their will. It details the actual crucifixion, the affairs regarding the inscription, the disposition of the Lord's clothes, his provision for his mother, some of the last words, and the burial.

Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and scourged him. (John 19:1)

This was actually an effort by Pilate to substitute a lighter penalty for that of death (Luke 23:22), although there was nothing light about the type of scourging inflicted. Men were known to die under the lash; and one shudders to think of such punishment being inflicted on any human being, especially upon a man the governor had just declared to be innocent. The horrible injustice of it was sickening. In post-apostolic times, there was a tendency to romanticize the role of Pilate in the crucifixion, viewing him as a helpless victim of circumstances imposed upon him by the Jews; but the glaring facts do not support any romantic view of this spineless procurator who ordered the scourging of a man he knew to be innocent, and followed that by condemning him to death. The kind of man that Pilate was, based solely upon what is in this chapter, is enough to declare him worthy of the odium that fell upon his name. Philo mentioned his corruption, outrage, robbery, insult, contumely, his indiscriminate and continuous murders, and his unceasing and vexatious cruelty."[1]

The synoptics leave an impression (but do not state it) that the scourging was part of the sentence of crucifixion; but John sets it in a different light, causing some to suppose there were two scourgings; but Westcott is doubtless correct in seeing only one. He said:

It is not to be supposed that the scourging was repeated ... the passing references (in the synoptics) do not necessarily bear that meaning. There is no real discrepancy between the accounts.[2]

Pilate's tactic failed. A taste of blood only intensified the sadistic hatred of Jesus' enemies. Pilate had arbitrarily imposed the scourging on Jesus, supposing that such brutality might awaken a sense of humanity in his foes; but it failed. Thus it came to pass that this pagan procurator fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah, "By his stripes we are healed" (Isaiah 53:5).

Excavations in the old tower of Antonio, Pilate's Praetorium, have uncovered a truncated column in a vaulted room, having no architectural connection with the building, and being exactly the kind of device to which criminals were tied for scourging.[3]

For an account of scourging in this present century, see my Commentary on Matthew, Matthew 27:26.

[1] B. F. Westcott, The Gospel according to St. John (Grand Rapids, Michigan: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1971), p. 275.

[2] Ibid., p. 268.

[3] Ibid.

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Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.
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Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on John 19:1". "Coffman Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/john-19.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Then Pilate therefore took Jesus,.... Finding that the Jews would not agree to his release, but that Barabbas was the person they chose, and being very desirous, if possible, to save his life, thought of this method: he ordered Jesus to be taken by the proper officers,

and scourged him; that is, commanded him to be scourged by them; which was done by having him to a certain place, where being stripped naked, and fastened to a pillar, he was severely whipped: and this he did, hoping the Jews would be satisfied therewith, and agree to his release; but though he did this with such a view, yet it was a very unjust action in him to scourge a man that he himself could find no fault in: however, it was what was foretold by Christ himself, and was an emblem of those strokes and scourges of divine justice he endured, as the surety of his people, in his soul, in their stead; and his being scourged, though innocent, shows, that it was not for his own, but the sins of others; and expresses the vile nature of sin, the strictness of justice, and the grace, condescension, and patience of Christ: and this may teach us not to think it strange that any of the saints should endure scourgings, in a literal sense; and to bear patiently the scourgings and chastisements of our heavenly Father, and not to fear the overflowing scourge or wrath of God, since Christ has bore this in our room.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on John 19:1". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/john-19.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and 1 scourged [him].

(1) The wisdom of the flesh chooses the least of two evils, but God curses that very wisdom.
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Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on John 19:1". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/john-19.html. 1599-1645.

Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament

Took and scourged (ελαβεν και εμαστιγωσενelaben kai emastigōsen). First aorist active indicative of λαμβανωlambanō and μαστιγοωmastigoō (from μαστιχmastix whip). For this redundant use of λαμβανωlambanō see also John 19:6. It is the causative use of μαστιγοωmastigoō for Pilate did not actually scourge Jesus. He simply ordered it done, perhaps to see if the mob would be satisfied with this penalty on the alleged pretender to royalty (Luke 23:22) whom Pilate had pronounced innocent (John 18:38), an illegal act therefore. It was a preliminary to crucifixion, but Jesus was not yet condemned. The Sanhedrin had previously mocked Jesus (Mark 14:65; Matthew 26:67.; Luke 22:63.) as the soldiers will do later (Mark 15:16-19; Matthew 27:27-30). This later mock coronation (Mark and Matthew) was after the condemnation.

Plaited a crown of thorns (πλεχαντες στεπανον εχ ακαντωνplexantes stephanon ex akanthōn). Old verb πλεκωplekō to weave, in the N.T. only here, Mark 15:17; Matthew 27:19. Not impossible for the mock coronation to be repeated.

Arrayed him
(περιεβαλον αυτονperiebalon auton). “Placed around him” (second aorist active indicative of περιβαλλωperiballō).

In a purple garment
(ιματιον πορπυρουνhimation porphuroun). Old adjective πορπυρεοςporphureos from πορπυραporphura purple cloth (Mark 15:17, Mark 15:20), dyed in purple, in the N.T. only here and Revelation 18:16. Jesus had been stripped of his outer garment ιματιονhimation (Matthew 27:28) and the scarlet cloak of one of the soldiers may have been put on him (Matthew 27:28).

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The Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament. Copyright Broadman Press 1932,33, Renewal 1960. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman Press (Southern Baptist Sunday School Board)
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Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on John 19:1". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rwp/john-19.html. Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

Vincent's Word Studies

Scourged ( ἐμαστίγωσεν )

Matthew and Mark use the Greek form of the Latin word flagellare, φραγελλόω , which occurs only in those two instances in the New Testament. John uses the more common Greek word, though he has φραγελλίον (flagellum ), scourge, at John 2:15. Matthew and Mark, however, both use μαστιγόω elsewhere (Matthew 10:17; Matthew 20:29; Mark 10:34). Its kindred noun, μάστιξ , occurs several times in the metaphorical sense of a plague. See on Mark 3:10, and compare Mark 5:29, Mark 5:34; Luke 7:21. The verb is used metaphorically only once, Hebrews 12:6. Scourging was the legal preliminary to crucifixion, but, in this case, was inflicted illegally before the sentence of crucifixion was pronounced, with a view of averting the extreme punishment, and of satisfying the Jews. (Luke 23:22). The punishment was horrible, the victim being bound to a low pillar or stake, and beaten, either with rods, or, in the case of slaves and provincials, with scourges, called scorpions, leather thongs tipped with leaden balls or sharp spikes. The severity of the infliction in Jesus' case is evident from His inability to bear His cross.

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Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on John 19:1". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/vnt/john-19.html. Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Matthew 27:26 ; Mark 15:15 .
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Wesley, John. "Commentary on John 19:1". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/john-19.html. 1765.

The Fourfold Gospel

Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and scourged him1.

  1. Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and scourged him. See .

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website. These files were made available by Mr. Ernie Stefanik. First published online in 1996 at The Restoration Movement Pages.
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J. W. McGarvey and Philip Y. Pendleton. "Commentary on John 19:1". "The Fourfold Gospel". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tfg/john-19.html. Standard Publishing Company, Cincinnati, Ohio. 1914.

Abbott's Illustrated New Testament

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Abbott, John S. C. & Abbott, Jacob. "Commentary on John 19:1". "Abbott's Illustrated New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ain/john-19.html. 1878.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

Тогда Пилат взял Иисуса. Пилат продолжает настаивать на своем. К первому поношению Иисуса он добавил второе, потому что надеялся: иудеи удовлетворятся этим наказанием, довольствуются бичеванием Христа. То же, что Пилат, трудясь столь усердно, ничего не достиг, должно приписываться небесному установлению, коим Христос был предопределен к смерти. Кроме того, Его невинность частью подтверждается свидетельством Его же судьи, дабы мы знали: Он свободен от всякой вины и стал виновным за других, подвергшись наказанию, положенному им за их грехи. В Пилате же мы видим замечательный пример трепещущей совести. Устами своими он оправдал Христа. Он признается: в Нем нет никакой вины, и, однако, подвергает наказанию как виновного. Так что, люди, лишенные мужества защищать правду, с необходимостью мятутся туда и сюда, разрываясь между враждующими мнениями. Мы все осуждаем Пилата. И между тем, стыдно сказать: сколь много похожих на него живет в этом мире. Они бичуют не только членов тела Христова, но и Его учение. Многие, чтобы спасти от смерти страдающих за Евангелие, принуждают их к нечестивому отречению от Христа. Этим они пытаются подвергнуть Христа насмешкам, выставляя Его жизнь в бесславном свете. Другие же, отбирая из Евангелия то, что с чем они могут согласиться, тем самым раздирают его на части. Они думают: достаточно будет устранить немногие вопиющие злоупотребления. Однако лучше вообще схоронить учение на время, чем так его бичевать. Ибо оно все равно возродится вопреки воле дьявола и тиранов. Труднее же всего восстановить в чистоте однажды извращенное учение.

 

 

 

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Calvin, John. "Commentary on John 19:1". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/john-19.html. 1840-57.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

1 Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and scourged him.

Ver. 1. Took Jesus and scourged him] So God scourgeth every son whom he receiveth, Hebrews 12:6. One Son he had that was sine corruptione et flagitio, without corruption and shame, but none that was sine corruptione et flagello, withouit corruption and scourging. In him therefore that rule held not, Flagitium et flagellum, sicut acus et filum, Punishment follows sin, as the thread follows the needle.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on John 19:1". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/john-19.html. 1865-1868.

Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament

Then Pilate therefore took Jesus and scourged him.

Observe here, 1. That as the death of the cross was a Roman punishment, so it was the manner of the Romans to whip their malefactors' before they crucified them.

Accordingly Pilate took Jesus, and scourged.

O! amazing sight, the great God of heaven and earth is lashed and scourged like a base slave. Behold, hard-hearted sinner! the lashes wherewith thy Redeemer is cruelly tormented, were to preserve thee from the severer lashes of thine own accursing and condemning conscience, and to save thee from being lashed by the rage and fury of devils to all eternity.

Observe, 2. How unwilling how very unwilling, Pilate was to be the instrument of our Saviour's death; it is very evident that he had a mind to release him; and it is concluded, that Pilate was thus forward to scourge Christ, hoping that the Jews would have been stisfied with this lighter punishment, and so have dismissed him.

From this instance we may gather, that hypocrities within the pale of the visible church, may be guilty of such tremendous acts of wickedness, as the conscience of an infidel and pagan may boggle at and protest against.

Pilate, a pagan, absolves Christ, and seeks to release him, whilst the hypocritical Jews, who had heard his doctrine, and saw his miracles, condemn him.

Observe, 3. How wretchedly Pilate suffers hmself to be overcome with the Jews' importunity, and, contrary to the light of his own reason and conscience, delivers the holy and innocent Jesus, first to be scourged, and then crucified.

Learn thence, That it is a vain apology for sin, when persons pretend that it was not committed with their own consent, but at the instigation and importunity of others: for such is the frame and constitution of man's soul, that none can make him either wicked or miserable, without his own consent: Then Pilate took Jesus and scourged him.

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Burkitt, William. "Commentary on John 19:1". Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wbc/john-19.html. 1700-1703.

Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary

1.] The reason or purpose of this scourging does not here appear; but in Luke 23:21-23 we read that after the choice of Barabbas, Pilate asked them what should be done with Jesus? And when they demanded that He should be crucified, Pilate, after another assertion of his innocence, said παιδεύσας αὐτὸν ἀπολύσω. Thus it is accounted for.

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Alford, Henry. "Commentary on John 19:1". Greek Testament Critical Exegetical Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hac/john-19.html. 1863-1878.

Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary

CONTENTS

The Lord Jesus is here scourged, crowned with thorns, and mocked. He is crucified. He giveth up the ghost. His burial.

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Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on John 19:1". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pmc/john-19.html. 1828.

Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament

[1. τότεἑμαστίγωσε, Then Pilate—scourged) The origin of the opinion concerning the scourging having been repeated, Korte, in his Itinerary, thinks is to be derived from the two columns (pillars), one of which is usually shown at Jerusalem, the other at Rome.—When the Jews were urgent for the crucifixion, which, according to custom, was preceded by scourging, Pilate conceived the plan of scourging Jesus, and, according as circumstances would suggest, either letting Him go (Luke 23:22, “I will therefore chastise Him and let Him go”), or sentencing Him to be crucified. The latter course, by reason of the very violent solicitations of the people, prevailed (was adopted by Pilate), not indeed once for all, or at one and the same time, but by degrees. Owing to this, Luke 23:24, does not say ἔκρινε, but ἐπέκρινε, passed sentence according to (ratified) the judgment of the priests and wishes of the people. Pilate yielded to the Jews, and unwillingly delivered up to their will one whom he himself would rather have let go; however, it was after this delivering up of Jesus that the scourging followed, and not till then, along with the mocking that attended it. Then Pilate afresh, moved with a renewed feeling of pity, tried to let Jesus go; and when, for the last time, he had sat on the tribunal (Matthew 27:19, “When he was set down on the judgment-seat, his wife sent unto him, saying, Have thou nothing to do with that just man,” etc.), again his attempt proving abortive, he at last delivered up Jesus by a full and final sentence.—Harm., p. 554, etc.]

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Bengel, Johann Albrecht. "Commentary on John 19:1". Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jab/john-19.html. 1897.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

JOHN CHAPTER 19

John 19:1-4 Jesus is scourged, crowned with thorns, mocked, and

buffeted by the soldiers.

John 19:5-7 Pilate declareth his innocence: the Jews charge him

with assuming the title of the Son of God.

John 19:8-16 Pilate upon further examination is more desirous to

release him, but, overcome with the clamours of the

Jews, delivereth him to be crucified.

John 19:17,18 He is led to Golgotha, and crucified between two

malefactors.

John 19:19-22 Pilate’s inscription on his cross.

John 19:23,24 The soldiers part his garments.

John 19:25-27 He commendeth his mother to John,

John 19:28-30 receiveth vinegar to drink, and dieth.

John 19:31-37 The legs of the others are broken, and the side of

Jesus pierced.

John 19:38-42 Joseph of Arimathea begs his body, and, assisted

by Nicodemus, buries it.

It was the custom of the Romans, when any one was to be crucified, first to scourge him; but (as it appears) Pilate ordered it, hoping that, though he could not prevail by any other art with them, yet by this he might; and they might possibly be satisfied with this lighter punishment; for it appeareth by John 19:4,12, that Pilate had a mind to release him, if he could have satisfied the Jews; though he had not courage enough to oppose the stream, and to do what himself thought was just, in despite of their opposition.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on John 19:1". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/john-19.html. 1685.

Alexander MacLaren's Expositions of Holy Scripture

бить По-видимому, Пилат предал Иисуса бичеванию в стратегических целях, чтобы отпустить Его (см. ст. 2-6). Он надеялся, что иудеев эта мера успокоит и их сострадание к мучениям Иисуса приведет к желанию отпустить Его (см. Лк. 23:13-16). Бичевание было ужасно жестоким действием, при котором жертву раздевали, привязывали к столбу и били несколько палачей, т.е. солдат, заменявших друг друга по мере усталости. Если жертвами были не римские граждане, то орудием наказания была короткая деревянная рукоятка с прикрепленными к ней несколькими кожаными ремнями. На конце каждого кожаного ремня были кусочки, сделанные из кости или металла. Избиение было таким беспощадным, что иногда жертвы умирали. Тело могло быть изранено или изорвано до такой степени, что были видны мышцы, сосуды и кости. Часто такое бичевание предшествовало смертной казни, чтобы ослабить и обезобразить жертву (Ис. 53:5). Однако Пилат, видимо, этим хотел вызвать сочувствие к Иисусу.

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MacLaren, Alexander. "Commentary on John 19:1". Alexander MacLaren's Expositions of Holy Scripture. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mac/john-19.html.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

1.Scourged him—The punishment of personal scourging with whips, rods, or cords, disused by modern civilization, is of high antiquity. The monuments show that it was a custom in ancient Egypt. It was legalized by Moses, but humanely limited to forty lashes, which the modern Jews, to avoid even an accidental overstepping of the law, limited to thirty-nine. Though not among the Jews a disgraceful punishment, it was held by the Roman law unworthy to be inflicted on a Roman citizen. The victim was bound to a low pillar, in order that, stooping forward, he might curve his bare back to receive the full fair stroke. It was customarily inflicted before crucifixion, and no limit was fixed by Roman law to the number of the blows. It has been questioned whether Pilate intended this to be the scourging preceding crucifixion, or whether it was intended as a sole punishment; whether as a compromise, according to Luke 23:16, or whether he hoped, by presenting Jesus under the cruel effects of the scourge before their eyes, he might melt them to pity. But it appears by Luke 23:25 that, at the close of the affair by their choice of Barabbas, he delivered Jesus to their will; so that this is probably the scourging preparatory to crucifixion. The presenting Jesus therefore so scourged, to induce their pity, was doubtless an afterthought.

 

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on John 19:1". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/john-19.html. 1874-1909.

Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible

‘Then Pilate therefore took Jesus and scourged him.’

Throughout the ages, until fairly recent centuries, the treatment of prisoners has been similar. Unless they were important people (in the case of Rome, Roman citizens) they could be treated abysmally regardless of whether they were innocent or guilty. This was done ‘for the good of the state’. Guilt or innocence were irrelevant. What mattered was ‘getting at the truth’, so that the ill-treatment and even torture of detainees to ‘get at the truth’ was commonplace.

The thought appeared to be that once they had had a taste of what might be coming to them if they did not, they would tell the truth, and this just became the custom. They failed to recognise that thereby men would say whatever they wanted in order to escape more torture. The fact was that common people were not considered important, and it was therefore not uncommon for a person who was acknowledged to be innocent from the start, to leave custody with his health ruined because of the methods used to ‘obtain the truth’ from him about a crime, even when he had not been involved. Thus a preliminary scourging like that applied to Jesus was not unexpected, and would be carried out by the soldiers present.

At this stage Pilate appears still to have been seeking to release Jesus because He was innocent, and the scourging must not necessarily be seen as suggesting otherwise. It did, however, demonstrate that he might be prepared to go further.

Three forms of corporal punishment were employed by the Romans, in increasing degrees of severity, the fustigatio (beating), the flagellatio (flogging), and the verberatio (scourging). The first could, on occasion, be a punishment in itself, leaving the person then free to go. But the more severe forms were usually part of the capital sentence as a prelude to crucifixion. The most severe, verberatio, is what was usually indicated by the use of the Greek verb mastigo-o, which is used in John 19:1. Men sometimes died when being scourged. So this would not be just a mild beating.

The Roman scourge was a dreadful thing. It consisted of a short wooden handle to which a number of leather thongs were attached whose ends were equipped with pieces of lead, brass and sharp bone depending on choice. The victim’s back was bared and the scourge laid on more or less heavily. It could cause severe damage penetrating well below the outer flesh. The choice of wording here may suggest an allusion to Isaiah 50:6, "I gave my back to those who scourge me…".

When Pilate first said, “I will scourge him and let him go’ (Luke 23:22) it was because he saw Him as innocent of the charges. The beating would merely serve as a warning, for it was felt in such cases that a scourging would give a warning to someone who, while not guilty, was no doubt guilty of something, as all common people were assumed to be. When that offer was refused Pilate then appears to have felt that if he could present the man in a sufficiently pathetic condition, a kind of parody of a king who was clearly no danger, he would be able to discharge Him. He had not yet recognised the vindictiveness of the Jewish leaders.

So the One Who had borne the burden of man’ suffering as He preached and healed, now received the marks of the dreaded scourge. His back was torn to ribbons as He commenced the path to the cross. The light Who had come to the world was seemingly being quenched (John 1:5). The One Who had come to reveal God’s love for the world was being returned after suitable treatment by that world.

He had been smitten in the face before Annas (John 18:22), spat on and beaten before Caiaphas and the council (Matthew 26:67; Mark 14:65), mocked and caricatured before Herod (Luke 23:11), and He was now scourged by Pilate and knocked around by the Roman soldiers. He would be scourged again before being led out to crucifixion as a matter of course. We remember the words of Lamentation, ‘Is it nothing to you, all you who pass by, look and see if there is any sorrow like my sorrow which is done to me with which God has inflicted me in the day of His fierce anger.’ (Lamentations 1:12). These words, spoken of the sufferings of Zion, well fit what Jesus as the representative of Israel was now undergoing.

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Pett, Peter. "Commentary on John 19:1". "Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible ". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pet/john-19.html. 2013.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

Pilate incorrectly hoped that if He flogged (Gr. emastigosen) Jesus this would satisfy the Jews (cf. John 19:4-6; Luke 23:16). Perhaps he thought that this action would increase popular support for Jesus against the chief priests, and then Pilate could release Him.

"From him [John] we learn that Jesus was not scourged in order to be crucified but in order to escape crucifixion." [Note: Lenski, p1243.]

There were three forms of flogging that the Romans administered. The lightest of these, the fustigatio, was a light beating that only hooligans experienced. The second, the flagellatio, was a severe beating that criminals who were guilty of more serious crimes received. The third, the verberatio, was the most brutal. The worst criminals including those sentenced to crucifixion underwent it. [Note: Carson, The Gospel . . ., p597.] Evidently Jesus received the first or second of these beatings at this time, namely, before His sentencing. He received the third type after His sentencing ( John 19:16; cf. Matthew 27:26; Mark 15:15).

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Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on John 19:1". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dcc/john-19.html. 2012.

Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament

John 19:1. Then Pilate therefore took Jesus and scourged him. It is the scourging itself that is the prominent thought, not the fact that it was inflicted by order of Pilate. The name of the governor indeed is mentioned, but this seems simply to be because without his authority the punishment could not have been inflicted. The punishment is itself the main point,—the increasing sufferings of Jesus and His deepening humiliation and agony as, under the pressure of His sinful nation, He goes onward to the cross. In the first picture (chap. John 18:33-40) Jesus is simply the prisoner bound; in the second, that before us, He is the prisoner scourged and treated with contemptuous mockery of his royal claims. This mockery follows the scourging.

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Schaff, Philip. "Commentary on John 19:1". "Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/scn/john-19.html. 1879-90.

The Expositor's Greek Testament

John 19:1. . Keim (vi. 99) thinks that Pilate at this point pronounced his “condemno” and “ibis in crucem,” and that the scourging was preparatory to the crucifixion. This might seem to be warranted by Mark’s very condensed account, John 15:15. (according to the Roman law by which, according to Jerome, it was decreed “ut qui crucifigeretur, prius flagellis verberaretur”; so Josephus, B. J., John 19:11, and Philo, ii. 528). But according to John the scourging was meant as a compromise by Pilate; as in Luke 23:22: “what evil hath He done? I found in Him nothing worthy of death; I will therefore scourge Him and let Him go.” Neither, then, as part of the capital punishment, nor in order to elicit the truth (quaestio per tormenta); but in the ill-judged hope that this minor punishment might satisfy the Jews, Pilate ordered the scourging. The victim of this severe punishment was bound in a stooping attitude to a low column (column of the Flagellation, now shown in Church of Holy Sepulchre) and beaten with rods or scourged with whips, the thongs of which were weighted with lead, and studded with sharp-pointed pieces of bone, so that frightful laceration followed each stroke. Death frequently resulted. , “and the soldiers plaited a crown of thorns” in mockery of the claim to royalty (for a similar instance, see Keim, vi. 121). Of the suggestions regarding the particular species of thorn, it may be said with Bynaeus (De Morte Christi, iii. 145) “nemo attulit aliquid certi”. , “a purple robe,” probably a small scarlet military cloak, or some cast-off sagum, or paludamentum, worn by officers and subject kings.

 

 

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Nicol, W. Robertson, M.A., L.L.D. "Commentary on John 19:1". The Expositor's Greek Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/egt/john-19.html. 1897-1910.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Pilate's motive, for ordering our Saviour to be scourged, was no other than this; that the Jews might be satisfied with these his numerous sufferings, and might no longer seek his death. For the same reason, likewise, he permitted his soldiers to inflict those unheard of cruelties, related in the sequel. (St. Augustine, tract. 110. in Joan.)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on John 19:1". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/john-19.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

Jesus. App-98.

scourged. Greek. mastigoo. Not the same word as in Matthew 27:26. Mark 15:15, which is phragelloo. Compare John 2:15. A Florentine Papyrus of A.D. 85 contains the following addressed by a Prefect in Egypt to one Phibion: "Thou wast worthy of scourging . . . but I deliver thee to the people. "Deissmann, Light, &c., p. 267.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on John 19:1". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/john-19.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and scourged him.

Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and scourged him. As a compromise, he had offered before to commit this less injustice on the person of the prisoner, in hope of that contenting them. (See page 465, first column, second paragraph, and second column, third paragraph.) But this victim of conflicting emotions is now resigning himself to the fiendish clamours of a Jewish mob, set on by sacerdotal hypocrites. This scourging, says Philo Judoeus, was what was inflicted on the worst criminals. The next step was the following, recorded in Matthew 27:27; and Mark 15:16 : "Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the common hall ('the Praetorium'), and gathered unto him the whole band (of soldiers)" - the body of the military cohort stationed there, to take part in the mock-coronation now to be enacted.

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on John 19:1". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/john-19.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(1) That the earlier Gospels all make the darkness last from twelve until three (the sixth hour until the ninth hour). This is apparently intended to indicate the time of the Crucifixion, and they thus agree generally with St. John’s account.

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on John 19:1". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/john-19.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and scourged him.
Pilate
Matthew 27:26-31; Mark 15:15-20; Luke 23:16,23
scourged
Psalms 129:3; Isaiah 50:6; 53:5; Matthew 20:19; 23:34; Mark 10:33,34; Luke 18:33; Acts 16:22,23; 22:24,25; 2 Corinthians 11:24; Hebrews 11:36; 1 Peter 2:24
Reciprocal: Luke 18:32 - mocked;  Luke 23:24 - Pilate;  John 19:31 - their;  Acts 4:27 - Pontius Pilate;  Acts 5:40 - beaten

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on John 19:1". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/john-19.html.

Ernst Hengstenberg on John, Revelation, Ecclesiastes, Ezekiel & Psalms

John 19:1. "Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and scourged Him."

Between this verse and the preceding lies Matthew 27:24-25, the mention of Pilate's washing his hands; as between ch. John 18:39-40, the message of Pilate's wife, Matthew 27:19. After the popular will had been uttered in so express a manner, Pilate yielded to it. He paved the way for the crucifixion when he gave up Jesus to be scourged. But he hoped to be able to restrain in the midst of its course the punishment itself. When he presented to the people the sad image of suffering innocence and righteousness, he thought they would be smitten by it. That was the reason why he permitted the soldiers to indulge all their mockery of Jesus, to which the scourging had given them a kind of right. The more deeply He was humbled, the more tragical the spectacle was which He exhibited, the better would Pilate's end be subserved. "It is a poor policy," says Quesnel, "when we undertake to win the world, and at the same time indulge them with part of what they desire; and when we think to satisfy our duty by denying them the other part. Fidelity cannot divide itself in relation to God."

Crucifixion was usually preceded, among the Romans, by scourging, which was so painful and horrible, that the delinquents not seldom gave up the ghost during the process. Heyne has devoted a special treatise to the question, cur supplicio addita fuerit virgarum soevitia (Opusc. iii.). The true reason was, the determination to heap upon the malefactor all kinds of torment. This we learn from Josephus, who mentions the combination of scourging and crucifixion in several passages. In the Antiq. v. 11, 1, he says the malefactors were scourged and tormented in every possible way before death. In another passage, De Bell. Jud. ii. 14, 9, scourging is mentioned as the prelude of crucifixion: "And taking others, they led them to Floras, whom having scourged with rods, he crucified." The scourging inflicted by Pilate was evidently of this kind. As the question in St John concerned only life and death, we may suppose, after the attempt in ch. John 18:39 had ended, that the scourging was the introduction to the penalty of death. The same is evident from a comparison of Matthew and Mark, where the scourging is the preliminary of the crucifixion: Matthew 27:26, "And when he had scourged Jesus, he delivered Him to be crucified;" Mark 15:15, "And so Pilate, willing to content the people, delivered Jesus, when he had scourged Him, to be crucified." As also in our Lord's own fore-announcement of His passion, Matthew 20:19, "And shall deliver Him to the Gentiles, to mock, and to scourge, and to crucify Him;" and Luke 18:33, "And they shall scourge Him, and put Him to death." There is no sufficient reason for distinguishing the scourging of Matthew and Mark from that of John. The difference in the expression, there φραγελλοῦν, the Latin fiagellare, here μαστιγοῦν, the genuine Greek expression, is of little moment, since in our Lord's prediction, Matthew 20:19, we have μαστιγοῦν. St Matthew chooses the official term, since the execution itself was now in question. The historical portion of the scourging is, in Matthew, and Mark, and John, the same; the only difference being, that the former pass over the fruitless attempts of Pilate to arrest the natural course of things, and disturb the connection between the scourging and crucifixion. The assertion, that in the first Evangelists the scourging follows the sentence, while in St John it precedes it, is altogether erroneous. The Evangelists mention no other sentence than that which in fact was uttered in the scourging. The formal sentence of death spoken, according to St John, by Pilate afterwards, they pass over as less important. It is misleading to connect the scourging in St John with Luke 23:16, where Pilate says to the Jews, "Having punished him, I will let him go." There the matter was only of a disciplinary infliction, which Pilate offered to the Jews. What that infliction was to be is not plainly said, because nothing depended upon it: he desired only to pave the way for the Jews to retire with honour from the matter. The loud demand of the people, which, according to St Mark, was independent of the other transaction, and took place while Pilate was making the overture to the rulers—their loud and increasing cry that he would release a prisoner as usual, had such an effect upon Pilate, as to make him withdraw the proposition he had made, and adopt other means which seemed to present themselves for the same end. When these means failed, he reverted, according to Luke 23:22, to his earlier proposal, but could obtain no hearing for it. St Luke alone gives us the account of Pilate's fruitless proposal. He omits the scourging. But that he did not omit it through ignorance, we learn from ch. Luke 18:33.

The more terrible the scourging was, the more miserable was its contrast with Pilate's "I find no fault in him." But such contradictions are unavoidable, when a man with a guilty conscience, assailable at all points, attempts to withstand the evil of others. We, however, must never forget that Jesus endured the scourging for us: "He voluntarily withdrew from heavenly joys, and clothed Himself with all sorrows and agonies, that He might take away the sorrows of man and fill him instead with joy."

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Hengstenberg, Ernst. "Commentary on John 19:1". Ernst Hengstenberg on John, Revelation, Ecclesiastes, Ezekiel & Psalms. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/heg/john-19.html.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

1.Then Pilate therefore took Jesus. Pilate adheres to his original intention; but to the former ignominy he adds a second, hoping that, when Christ shall have been scourged, the Jews will be satisfied with this light chastisement. When he labors so earnestly, and without any success, we ought to recognize in this the decree of Heaven, by which Christ was appointed to death. Yet his innocence is frequently attested by the testimony of the judge, in order to assure us that he was free from all sin, and that he was substituted as a guilty person in the room of others, and bore the punishment due to the sins of others. We see also in Pilate a remarkable example of a trembling conscience. He acquits Christ with his mouth, and acknowledges that there is no guilt in him, and yet inflicts punishment on him, as if he were guilty. Thus, they who have not so much courage as to defend, with unshaken constancy, what is right, must be driven hither and thither, and led to adopt opposite and conflicting opinions.

We all condemn Pilate; and yet, it is shameful to relate that there are so many Pilates (157) in the world, who scourge Christ, not only in his members, but also in his doctrine. There are many who, for the purpose of saving the life of those who are persecuted for the sake of the Gospel, constrain them wickedly to deny Christ. What is this, but to expose Christ to ridicule, that he may lead a dishonorable life? Others select and approve of certain parts of the Gospel, and yet tear the whole Gospel to pieces. They think that they have done exceedingly well, if they have corrected a few gross abuses. It would be better that the doctrine should be buried for a time, than that it should be scourged in this manner, for it would spring up again ill spite of the devil and of tyrants; but nothing is more difficult than to restore it to its purity after having been once corrupted.

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Calvin, John. "Commentary on John 19:1". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/john-19.html. 1840-57.