16.01.17 Jn. 19:28; Mt. 27:48a; Jn. 19:29b; Mt. 27:49 (See also Mk. 15:36) On the Cross
JESUS IS GIVEN DRINK
Jn. 28 After this, when Jesus knew that everything was now accomplished that the Scripture might be fulfilled, He said, “I’m thirsty!”
Mt. 48a Immediately one of them ran and got a sponge,
Jn29b full of sour wine on hyssop and held it up to His mouth.
Mt. 49 But the rest said, “Let’s see if Elijah comes to save Him!”
“I’m thirsty.” This is the fifth of His testaments. He had not eaten nor had a drink since the Passover on the previous evening. He was dehydrated and breathing became increasingly difficult. The fact that He was extremely thirsty authenticates His humanity. It also demonstrated His humility, as anyone of proud character would not have uttered such words. Yet here was the One who healed the sick, offered living water to those of thirst, raised the dead; but now Himself suffered from thirst.
Jesus did not accept any wine with myrrh or frankincense to kill the pain, nor did He accept any poison, such as gall, to hasten death because He was to drink the cup of suffering decreed by His Father. Centuries earlier, these prophetic words were written,
20 Insults have broken my heart,
and I am in despair.
I waited for sympathy,
but there was none;
I found no one.
21 Instead, they gave me gall
in my food
and for my thirst
they gave me vinegar to drink.
It is interesting that a bystander, who had compassion for His pain, gave Him vinegar without realizing he was fulfilling prophecy. Jesus needed the fluid so He could make the most important statements of His work. The wine vinegar was non-alcoholic and cleared the mouth of drying saliva for the last two most important phrases that He was about to speak.
“Sour wine on hyssop.” John recorded this small detail of a hyssop plant because his Jewish audience knew hyssop was used to apply the blood of the sacrificial lamb on the doorposts just prior to their exodus out of Egypt. The blood applied with a hyssop was an act of mercy by God, because He was about to bring judgment upon all people (i.e. namely the Egyptians and Hebrews) who did not apply the blood upon their doorposts and lintels. This was to symbolize that Jesus was the blood of the sacrificial lamb that would save His people from death.
By this time Jesus had been on the cross for three hours, possibly four or more. He was on the cross from 12:00 noon until 3:00 when the land was covered with complete darkness. Scholars believe that it was sometime after the darkness lifted that He spoke His last words and died. That left only a short amount of time for the burial of the three crucified men before the Passover began.
. The hyssop is a small plant that grows throughout the Middle East and is still a popular spice.