Metaphysical Bible Interpretation of John Chapter 19
Metaphysically Interpreting John 19:1-16
19:1Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and scourged him. 19:2And the soldiers platted a crown of thorns, and put it on his head, and arrayed him in a purple garment; 19:3and they came unto him, and said, Hail, King of the Jews! and they struck him with their hands. 19:4And Pilate went out again, and saith unto them, Behold, I bring him out to you, that ye may know that I find no crime in him. 19:5Jesus therefore came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple garment. And Pilate saith unto them, Behold, the man! 19:6When therefore the chief priests and the officers saw him, they cried out, saying, Crucify him, crucify him! Pilate saith unto them, Take him yourselves, and crucify him: for I find no crime in him. 19:7The Jews answered him, We have a law, and by that law he ought to die, because he made himself the Son of God. 19:8When Pilate therefore heard this saying, he was the more afraid; 19:9and he entered into the Praetorium again, and saith unto Jesus, Whence art thou? But Jesus gave him no answer. 19:10Pilate therefore saith unto him, Speakest thou not unto me? Knowest thou not that I have power to release thee, and have power to crucify thee? 19:11Jesus answered him, Thou wouldest have no power against me, except it were given thee from above: therefore he that delivered me unto thee hath greater sin. 19:12Upon this Pilate sought to release him: but the Jews cried out, saying, If thou release this man, thou art not Caesar's friend: every one that maketh himself a king speaketh against Caesar.
19:13When Pilate therefore heard these words, he brought Jesus out, and sat down on the judgment-seat at a place called The Pavement, but in Hebrew, Gabbatha. 19:14Now it was the Preparation of the passover: it was about the sixth hour. And he saith unto the Jews, Behold, your King! 19:15They therefore cried out, Away with him, away with him, crucify him! Pilate saith unto them, Shall I crucify your King? The chief priests answered, We have no king but Caesar. 19:16Then therefore he delivered him unto them to be crucified.
March 21, 1937: John 19:4-9
What does Pilate represent in this lesson? Pilate (“armed with a javelin”) represents the personal will or ruling principle of the sense plane.
How does man rid himself of the hold of personality, when the personal will has controlled him from birth? Man’s inner nature (the I AM) can [overcome?] personality through nonresistance, when man develops in the Christ consciousness sufficiently to lay down his limited, personal conception of life. “No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself.”
What trait especially characterizes personality? Selfishness is complete in personality. The personal will, when allowed to control man, betrays his better nature from motives of policy. Although Pilate stated that he found no crime in Jesus, he delivered Him up to be crucified, because he saw that unless he yielded to the will of the mob they would endanger his office under Caesar.
Explain the statement made by the Jews, “We have a law, and by that law he ought to die, because he made himself the Son of God.” The Jews represent traditional religious beliefs, which include the doctrine of total depravity. Those who believe this doctrine to be true feel it sacrilegious in man to speak of himself as son of God.
March 30, 1947: John 19:10-16
How does self-will compare in strength with the strength of the transformed will? Self-will appears to be stronger, but in reality is not. Pilate (the personal will) had outward authority and could exercise the power of life and death over Jesus (the word of Truth expressing the divine will), but could not control his own fears and disregarded the principle of justice to allay them. Jesus was in full control of Himself throughout the trial, stated the aim and purpose of His life, and took thought for the welfare of others. The personal will achieves vain ends, whereas the divine will opens the way to spiritual attainment and eternal life.
What purpose does the I AM serve in life? It makes Truth known. Without Truth life becomes a mockery not worth living.
June 5, 1949: John 19:1-16
What is symbolized by the scourging and other indignities borne by Jesus in the course of the trial before Pilate? The struggle between the flesh and the spirit in man. Pilate, the Roman soldiers, the chief priests, and the multitude symbolize forms of the flesh, or sense consciousness. Jesus is a symbol of spiritual man.
What is the ruling principle on the sense plane? The personal will, represented by Pilate (“armed with a javelin”).
Pilate controlled the situation materially, since he had the power of life and death over Jesus. Did he control it otherwise? No. The victory over the personal will remained with Jesus, who retained His self-control and His spiritual ascendancy throughout the trial. He was master of the inner realm and remained true to His convictions and principles.
Of what was Pilate “the more afraid,” when the Jews accused Jesus of “making himself the Son of God”? The personal will (Pilate) is nonplused and fearful, when its efforts to exercise domination over the I AM (Jesus) are unavailing. Lacking spiritual understanding, the personal will does not understand the nature of its challenge to its domination that is made by Truth, when the religious thoughts (Jews) reject Truth and seek to have the personal will exert its authority in the spiritual realm. Pilate's question, '“Whence art thou?” arose out of this fear.
Why did Jesus give Pilate no answer to this inquiry? Because of the manifest falsity of the foundation on which it rested. The I AM does not recognize any authority in the personal will to question its supremacy.
Jesus answered Pilate's claim to autocratic power over His life. Why did He do this? The authority of the personal will, while absolute in degree, does not extend to the world of Spirit, in which the I AM dwells. God is the source of all power, and the attempts of the personal will to vanquish the I AM at the behest of the religious thoughts (Jews) represent a misuse of divine power.
What is represented by Caesar, whose “friend” Pilate feared not to be? Caesar (“cutting edge,” “keen”) represents the personal self's ruling through reason and will, both mind and body, as indicated by the “world,” and forcing all the faculties and powers to pay tribute in slavish service.
“We have no king but Caesar.” What did this admission of the chief priests mean? It meant that they confessed to the belief that the kingdom of God had become the kingdom of the world and that they rejected the Christ altogether in favor of temporal power.
What is symbolized by Pilate's deliverance of Jesus to the Jews to be crucified? The personal will is forced either to recognize and accept the authority of Truth in the realm of sense, or to reject Truth so that it may continue its own dominance in the realm of sense. Because of its unwillingness to surrender its power, it chooses the latter course.
Metaphysically Interpreting John 19:17-30
19:17They took Jesus therefore: and he went out, bearing the cross for himself, unto the place called The place of a skull, which is called in Hebrew, Golgotha: 19:18where they crucified him, and with him two others, on either side one, and Jesus in the midst. 19:19And Pilate wrote a title also, and put it on the cross. And there was written, JESUS OF NAZARETH, THE KING OF THE JEWS. 19:20This title therefore read many of the Jews, for the place where Jesus was crucified was nigh to the city; and it was written in Hebrew, and in Latin, and in Greek. 19:21The chief priests of the Jews therefore said to Pilate, Write not, The King of the Jews; but that he said, I am King of the Jews. 19:22Pilate answered, What I have written I have written. 19:23The soldiers therefore, when they had crucified Jesus, took his garments and made four parts, to every soldier a part; and also the coat: now the coat was without seam, woven from the top throughout. 19:24They said therefore one to another, Let us not rend it, but cast lots for it, whose it shall be: that the scripture might be fulfilled, which saith,
They parted my garments among them,
And upon my vesture did they cast lots.
19:25These things therefore the soldiers did.
But there were standing by the cross of Jesus his mother, and his mother's sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. 19:26When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son! 19:27Then saith he to the disciple, Behold, thy mother! And from that hour the disciple took her unto his own home.
19:28After this Jesus, knowing that all things are now finished, that the scripture might be accomplished, saith, I thirst. 19:29There was set there a vessel full of vinegar: so they put a sponge full of the vinegar upon hyssop, and brought it to his mouth. 19:30When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up his spirit.
May 28, 1905: John 19:17-30
The popular thought, based upon theology, that Jesus died upon the cross for our sins, is not reasonable, nor true. It is a libel upon the goodness of God that He would demand the death of his beloved son in such a horrible manner, to appease His anger toward the balance of the sinners in the human family. Again, how could the death of one man atone for the sins of billions of others? Is the death of a criminal in any way an atonement for his crime, or does it help other men to be better? As we emerge from barbaric methods, we abolish capital punishment in all its forms. Jesus taught that the old Jewish justice of a life for a life, an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth, was not according to the law of God. Then why should he allow himself to come under this man-made law in order to help the race?
It is quite evident that theology has not understood the true character of Jesus' death. Instead of dying upon the cross like the two thieves that were crucified with him, he simply passed through the human consciousness of death and came out fully alive on the other side. The bodies of the robbers were turned to clay, while that of Jesus became alive again, was glorified, and, as is plainly taught in the Scriptures, transcended to quickening life and substance for all who will eat it and drink it. This is a great mystery to the sense man, but he who sees beyond the veil knows positively that the body of Jesus is right here in our midst radiant with eternal life.
Then Jesus did not die upon the cross to save men from their sins, but he lived. This is an important distinction, and clears up points that have always been stumbling blocks to those who wanted a reasonable theology. What we all need is a way to overcome death. We do not want anyone to die for us. There is, and always has been, enough of that sort of atonement. Thousands of men and women have heroically died for their friends and country. But who among them all has been so heroic and powerful as to master that great and “last enemy to be overcome,” death itself? None save Jesus.
Then we should quit wailing over the agony of the cross; quit looking for the Master, like Mary in the tomb, quit talking about the death and departure of Jesus, and realize the Truth, that Jesus went through the appearance called death to demonstrate for us its powerlessness in the presence of one who had made the atonement with the Father.
We are to take up our cross, square our likes by the rectitude of Truth, both in Spirit and in the material world, and then we shall follow Jesus in the crucifixion of the world, the flesh and the devil, and overcome as he overcame. This supreme attainment is not only possible to all men, but must be accomplished by all who expect to perpetuate their conscious existence.
We may continue to exist in the illusions of sense—being born in the flesh and passing out of it into the psychical through the door of death, again and again for ages, but this must eventually be done away with. We must make the atonement ourselves; we must put on not only the mind of Christ but the resurrected body as well.
December 14, 1919: John 19:25-27
Who else stood with Jesus through the trial? His mother Mary, his mother's sister Mary, the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene.
What is the metaphysical meaning of the word “Mary”? “Mary” means that which is exalted, divinely favored, constancy. The name also typifies sweet perfume, the myrrh of the sea.
What was Jesus' last act before he was delivered up on the cross? Jesus’ last act was one of tender care and thoughtfulness for his mother, to place her under his disciple John's charge. His words to John were: “Behold thy mother! And from that hour the disciple took her unto his own home.”
July 22, 1923: John 19:25-27
When the personality is being crucified, how should we handle maternal love? Maternal love should be turned into spiritual love. When Jesus on the cross saw John the beloved and his mother standing by, he said: “Woman, behold, thy son!”
August 5, 1923: John 19:25
What do the women, Mary the mother of Jesus, Mary Magdalene, and the others represent? These women represent innate love in its various activities.
What phase of love is represented by Mary Magdalene? Mary Magdalene represents love demonized by sense.
How does man handle this phase of love? Man casts out or denies from his subconscious mind all desire for sense expression in all its bodily avenues.
What is the cross referred to in verse 25? The cross here referred to is a crossing out of the old, and thus a making way for the new. Jesus' experience on the cross symbolizes the last step to be taken by each individual, when he fully surrenders to God and enters into the “kingdom of the heavens,” or the fourth dimension. The women standing by the cross represent the loyalty of love in time of crucifixion.
March 21, 1926: John 19:23-30
What does the crucifixion symbolize in the development of man? The crucifixion symbolizes the final and full erasure of personality from consciousness. When man is willing to surrender himself to the Christ Mind, he begins the crucifixion. Every time that he gives up a false belief in the name of Christ it is destroyed in his consciousness. When all the errors that constitute the carnal mind are destroyed, Satan is wholly cast out and Judas is redeemed.
What do the soldiers and the garments represent? The soldiers represent the thoughts that fight against the elemental forces: earth, air, fire, and water. The garments represent the thoughts that protect the body against those forces.
What does the coat or tunic which “was without seam, woven from the top throughout” represent? The coat or vesture for which the soldiers cast lots represents the universal unity of all substance and life. To the outermost consciousness (soldiers) life seems a game of chance, but unity prevails, nevertheless.
What is represented by Jesus' giving attention to his mother and the disciple John? The love that binds us in the unity of human relations endures, and although we relinquish the mortal, love continues and all that we love are united in the bonds of the brotherhood of Jesus Christ.
What is represented by Jesus' thirst and the attempt to satisfy it with vinegar? Thirst is the physical desire for more life. This desire can be satisfied only by the realization that life is spiritual. The attempt to satisfy it with vinegar shows the futility of material counterfeits. In Matthew 27:46 it is stated that at this stage of the crucifixion Jesus cried: “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” This was the last appeal of the mortal consciousness in its concept of a personal God.
October 12, 1930: John 19:25-27
In the process of regeneration must the personal self be crucified? Yes. At such a time the spiritual foundation of life may seem to be slipping away. However, the I AM only appears to let go. In reality it is getting a firmer grasp on soul and body consciousness. Through Christ, the soul and body are raised to a higher plane of consciousness.
March 20, 1932: John 19:17-22
In the development of the soul what does the crucifixion represent? The crucifixion represents the complete erasure of error thought, otherwise called carnal consciousness.
Did Christ, the Son of God, die on the cross? No. Christ is the spiritual man, who cannot be destroyed by any material experience.
Did Jesus, the Son of man, die on the cross? Jesus apparently died, but the fact that He resurrected His body proves that He did overcome “before the silver cord is loosed, or the golden bowl is broken” (Eccles. 12:6)
What is symbolized by crucifixion on Golgotha, “The place of a skull”? The skull is the place where intellect is “crossed out,” that Spirit may win an eternal ascendancy. Jesus (the intellectual) was crucified at “The place of the skull” that Christ (Truth) might become all in all.
Who were with Jesus on the cross? The crucifixion of the “two others” who were with Jesus represent the erasure from the mind of all thoughts of the past and of the future.
What is represented by the legend on the cross, “JESUS OF NAZARETH, THE KING OF THE JEWS”? This legend identifies the supremacy, mastery, and dominion of the I AM in man.
March 20, 1932: John 19:25-30
What thought is made prominent by Jesus' calling attention to His mother? The thought of love and protection. This thought holds the mind steady and strong, when it dies to the old and is made new in Spirit.
What thought is represented by the vinegar upon hyssop that was given to Jesus? The vinegar upon hyssop represents the final bitterness and agony of the separation between carnal mind and body.
Are soul and body again reunited in those who follow Jesus in the crucifixion? Soul and body are reunited in the resurrection, in which there is no consciousness of carnality or earthly conditions, and the I AM comes into a clear understanding of its right relation to God.
March 21, 1937: John 19:14-18
“He went out bearing the cross for himself.” Is this statement universally true? It is true that everyone bears his own cross, until he makes a full surrender of personality and enters into the universal consciousness. The death of personality does not correspond to the death of the body, but is a daily work of renunciation of the lower self and a substitution of the higher “until Christ be formed” in man.
Metaphysically, what is the “Preparation of the passover”? This denotes a present undertaking, namely the freeing of the spiritual man from the dominion of sense. It has no connection with death.
Explain the significance of Golgotha. Golgotha (“place of the skull”) represents the domain of intellect divorced from spiritual truth. Purely intellectual dominion in man must come to an end and absolute Truth (the Christ) must possess him consciously instead.
March 21, 1937: John 19:25-30
What is represented by “the scripture” that Jesus always fulfilled? The scripture represents the creative power of the word in us. Jesus willed to do the will of God in all things, therefore He was eager to fulfill every least portion of the scripture, or to make manifest every word containing the creative essence of Truth.
November 6, 1938: John 19:26-27
What provision for our parents does the Christ wisdom lead us to make? It causes us to surround them with the ministrations of love. Jesus gave His mother into the keeping of the disciple He loved.
October 24, 1943: John 19:25-27
What part does love play in the learning of obedience? Obedience comes easy and natural to love. When we love, our great desire is to please the loved one.
March 30, 1947: John 19:25-30
Is the personal will easily recognizable by its workings or expression? It can scarcely be mistaken, since it follows motives of policy and selfishness. The I AM is made to bear the cross that is prepared by the personal will, until the latter is erased from consciousness.
What follows the full surrender of the personal will? Entrance into the universal consciousness, although this does not necessarily correspond to the death of the body. When victory over the lower sense self through the transforming power of the Christ Spirit is achieved, the individual becomes at one with Christ.
How does a person become king of his inner life, determining his own course under all circumstances? By bringing his will into harmony with the divine will.
August 27, 1950: John 19:25-27
What trustworthy guide may we follow in our relations with loved ones? Divine love. This truth is symbolized for us in Jesus, from the cross, committing His mother to the keeping of the disciple whom He loved above the rest individually.
Metaphysically Interpreting John 19:31-37
19:31The Jews therefore, because it was the Preparation, that the bodies should not remain on the cross upon the sabbath (for the day of that sabbath was a high day), asked of Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away. 19:32The soldiers therefore came, and brake the legs of the first, and of the other that was crucified with him: 19:33but when they came to Jesus, and saw that he was dead already, they brake not his legs: 19:34howbeit one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and straightway there came out blood and water.19:35And he that hath seen hath borne witness, and his witness is true: and he knoweth that he saith true, that ye also may believe. 19:36For these things came to pass, that the scripture might be fulfilled, A bone of him shall not be broken.19:37And again another scripture saith, They shall look on him whom they pierced.
Metaphysically Interpreting John 19:38-42
19:38And after these things Joseph of Arimathaea, being a disciple of Jesus, but secretly for fear of the Jews, asked of Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus: and Pilate gave him leave. He came therefore, and took away his body. 19:39And there came also Nicodemus, he who at the first came to him by night, bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about a hundred pounds. 19:40So they took the body of Jesus, and bound it in linen cloths with the spices, as the custom of the Jews is to bury. 19:41Now in the place where he was crucified there was a garden; and in the garden a new tomb wherein was never man yet laid. 19:42There then because of the Jews' Preparation (for the tomb was nigh at hand) they laid Jesus.
Transcribed by Lloyd Kinder on 01-14-2014