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Chapter XII.

John shows a logical order in developing the causes of the hostility of the Jewish authorities to Christ, which is not found in the other Gospels. From the time when, at his first passover, the Lord drove the money changers out of the temple, their hatred had grown deeper at every fresh visit to Jerusalem, until, just before his retirement to Ephraim, the Sanhedrim had officially resolved upon his death as soon as it could be brought about on some charge that would be plausible in the eyes of the Roman rulers. The Lord knew full well that his “hour was at hand” and went into retirement before the storm, not to escape his fate, but to defer it until the appointed time at the passover. As that time approached he left Ephraim and, it seems, crossed over to the east of the Jordan, joined the crowds that were hastening to the feast, and crossing the Jordan near Jericho, passed through that city, where he healed the blind men, converted Zaccheus and abode at his house. From thence he went with his disciples and the crowds of pilgrims, who then thronged the thoroughfares, along the winding route that led through the mountain passes from the plain of Jericho up to Jerusalem. Reaching Bethany he parted from the throngs and stopped to rest in the home of friends who were among the truest he had on earth. There is a difference of opinion among scholars whether he arrived at Bethany on the evening of the Sabbath day or the day before. It is well to admit that there is much disagreement concerning the exact date of several of the momentous events of the week, extending from the arrival of the Lord in Bethany until his resurrection. Even the “six days before the passover” has been variously interpreted by the commentators. Andrews, whose chronology I have usually followed, and who is one of the best of authorities on chronological questions, adopts Friday as the date of the arrival at Bethany, and supposes that the Lord left Jericho, eighteen miles from Jerusalem, in the morning, reaching Bethany about sunset, and stopped with his apostles over the Sabbath. In the evening of the next day, the Sabbath, the feast was made at the house of Simon the leper. The events of this most wonderful week in the history of the world are tabulated as follows:

Saturday.

Nisan 9.

March 31.

Supper at Bethany.

Sunday.

Nisan 10.

April 1.

Entry into Jerusalem.

Monday.

Nisan 11.

April 2.

Second cleansing of the temple.

Tuesday.

Nisan 12.

April 3.

Last visit to the temple. The prophecy of Matthew, chapter XXIV.

Wednesday.

Nisan 13.

April 4.

Savior resting at Bethany.

Thursday.

Nisan 14.

April 6.

The Savior eats the passover; the Lord's Supper instituted.

Friday.

Nisan 15.

April 6.

The Lord crucified. The Jews eat the passover.

Saturday.

Nisan 16.

April 7.

The Lord in the tomb.

Sunday.

Nisan 17.

April 8.

The Resurrection.

While I am sensible that there are certain difficulties in this arrangement 185I believe that there are fewer than are presented by any other scheme and I shall follow it, not as certain, but as supported by the best authorities and most probable. Reasons will be given, under different heads, for the date assigned to the events considered.

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