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What the Soldier Saw

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The Soldier confessing Christ

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Introduction

Centurion:

centurio, was the commander of a hundred men, more or less, in a Rom legion. St. Matthew and St. Luke use the Gr word while St. Mark prefers the Lat form, as he does in the case of other words, seeing that he wrote primarily for Rom readers. The number of centurions in a legion was 60, that being at all epochs the number of centuries, although the number varied in the cohort or speíra. The ordinary duties of the centurion were to drill his men, inspect their arms, food and clothing, and to command them in the camp and in the field.

Nicol, T. (1915). Centurion. In J. Orr, J. L. Nuelsen, E. Y. Mullins, & M. O. Evans (Eds.), The International Standard Bible Encyclopaedia (Vol. 1–5, p. 588). Chicago: The Howard-Severance Company.
This man was a battle hardened warrior, however They were not only chosen for their

It is interesting to compare this with the statement of Polybius (vi. 24), that the centurions were chosen by merit, and so were men remarkable not so much for their daring courage as for their deliberation, constancy, and strength of mind.”, Dr. Maclear’s N. T. Hist.

Nicol, T. (1915). Centurion. In J. Orr, J. L. Nuelsen, E. Y. Mullins, & M. O. Evans (Eds.), The International Standard Bible Encyclopaedia (Vol. 1–5, p. 588). Chicago: The Howard-Severance Company.
He was not a man charging recklessly into battle, neither a foolish person. However Centurions were intelligent men who used not only courage but intellect on the field of battle.

Men like Cornelius and Julius (Acts 10:1; 27:1) may have been separated from the legion to which they properly belonged for the discharge of special duties. They and other centurions mentioned in the Gospels and the Acts (Mt 8:5; Mk 15:39, 44, 45; Lk 23:47) are represented by the sacred writers in a favorable light. See AUGUSTAN BAND.

Centurions were men of great renown, courage, and intellect. Not mindless men making rash decisions without purpose.

What He Saw

Comrades

These were the men he knew and/or had led in battle, spend most of his time with training, eating, and living his life with.
John 19:23-
John 19:23–24 KJV 1900
Then the soldiers, when they had crucified Jesus, took his garments, and made four parts, to every soldier a part; and also his coat: now the coat was without seam, woven from the top throughout. They said therefore among themselves, 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 raiment among them, and for my vesture they did cast lots. These things therefore the soldiers did.

Then the soldiers, when they had crucified Jesus, took his garments, and made four parts, to every soldier a part; and also his coat: now the coat was without seam, woven from the top throughout. 24 They said therefore among themselves, 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 raiment among them, and for my vesture they did cast lots. These things therefore the soldiers did.

Corruption

1. The shame they put upon our Lord Jesus, in stripping him of his garments before they crucified him. The shame of nakedness came in with sin. He therefore who was made sin for us bore that shame, to roll away our reproach. He was stripped, that we might be clothed

They were gambling over the Savior’s garments, they were seeking that they may profit from them.
They noticed the seam and therefore it’s worth and value for which they could sell it.

2. The wages with which these soldiers paid themselves for crucifying Christ. They were willing to do it for his old clothes. Nothing is to be done so bad, but there will be found men bad enough to do it for a trifle. Probably they hoped to make more than ordinary advantage of his clothes, having heard of cures wrought by the touch of the hem of his garment, or expecting that his admirers would give any money for them.

They found more profit in it for themselves to have this coat in one piece rather than to separate it into many pieces.

Careless

They were careless about what was taking place before them, they were not worried about the Lord’s death at all.
They were there to do their job and nothing else. Yet sought the opportunity to make a profit off the Lord Jesus.

The Crowd

Everyone gathered to the hillside that day to witness the crucifixion of our Lord. They made a spectacle of Him and sought to be entertained in His death.

Their Cries

And Pilate answered and said again unto them, What will ye then that I shall do unto him whom ye call the King of the Jews? 13 And they cried out again, Crucify him. 14 Then Pilate said unto them, Why, what evil hath he done? And they cried out the more exceedingly, Crucify him.

Mark 15:12–15 KJV 1900
And Pilate answered and said again unto them, What will ye then that I shall do unto him whom ye call the King of the Jews? And they cried out again, Crucify him. Then Pilate said unto them, Why, what evil hath he done? And they cried out the more exceedingly, Crucify him. And so Pilate, willing to content the people, released Barabbas unto them, and delivered Jesus, when he had scourged him, to be crucified.
Mark 15:12

12 And Pilate answered and said again unto them, What will ye then that I shall do unto him whom ye call the King of the Jews? 13 And they cried out again, Crucify him. 14 Then Pilate said unto them, Why, what evil hath he done? And they cried out the more exceedingly, Crucify him. 15

They Cried out for Condemnation upon Him, “Crucify Him!”
Jesus said:

18 If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. 19 If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.

John 15:18–19 KJV 1900
If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.
Here the hateful cries of the world are exclaimed against the Savior, the one willing to lay His life down for their lives. The Holy Innocent Lamb of God, slain for them.
Here the hateful cries of the world are exclaimed against the Savior, the one willing to lay His life down for their lives. The Holy Innocent Lamb of God, slain for them.
Their cry is a cry of hate , full of malice within the heart and soul of man. It is a cry so wicked that it echoes within the heart of all evil men today, even every sinner.

Their Cursing’s

Mark 15:29–32 KJV 1900
And they that passed by railed on him, wagging their heads, and saying, Ah, thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days, Save thyself, and come down from the cross. Likewise also the chief priests mocking said among themselves with the scribes, He saved others; himself he cannot save. Let Christ the King of Israel descend now from the cross, that we may see and believe. And they that were crucified with him reviled him.

29 And they that passed by railed on him, wagging their heads, and saying, Ah, thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days, 30 Save thyself, and come down from the cross. 31 Likewise also the chief priests mocking said among themselves with the scribes, He saved others; himself he cannot save. 32 Let Christ the King of Israel descend now from the cross, that we may see and believe. And they that were crucified with him reviled him.

REVI'LED, participle passive Reproached; treated with opprobrious or contemptuous language. Webster’s 1828 Dictionary.
Instead of remembering the healing and miracles, they railed accusations on Him and Blasphemed against Him.

The Christ

He visibly saw the Son of God, God manifested in the flesh
John 1:16 KJV 1900
And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace.
John 1:14 KJV 1900
And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
John 1:

The Cruel Sufferings

Mark 15:6–15 KJV 1900
Now at that feast he released unto them one prisoner, whomsoever they desired. And there was one named Barabbas, which lay bound with them that had made insurrection with him, who had committed murder in the insurrection. And the multitude crying aloud began to desire him to do as he had ever done unto them. But Pilate answered them, saying, Will ye that I release unto you the King of the Jews? For he knew that the chief priests had delivered him for envy. But the chief priests moved the people, that he should rather release Barabbas unto them. And Pilate answered and said again unto them, What will ye then that I shall do unto him whom ye call the King of the Jews? And they cried out again, Crucify him. Then Pilate said unto them, Why, what evil hath he done? And they cried out the more exceedingly, Crucify him. And so Pilate, willing to content the people, released Barabbas unto them, and delivered Jesus, when he had scourged him, to be crucified.
Mark 15:6
INSURREC'TION, noun [Latin insurgo; in and surgo, to rise.]
INSURREC'TION, noun [Latin insurgo; in and surgo, to rise.]
1. A rising against civil or political authority; the open and active opposition of a number of persons to the execution of a law in a city or state. It is equivalent to sedition, except that sedition expresses a less extensive rising of citizens. It differs from rebellion, for the latter expresses a revolt, or an attempt to overthrow the government, to establish a different one or to place the country under another jurisdiction. It differs from mutiny, as it respects the civil or political government; whereas a mutiny is an open opposition to law in the army or navy. insurrection is however used with such latitude as to comprehend either sedition or rebellion.
Matthew 27:26–30 KJV 1900
Then released he Barabbas unto them: and when he had scourged Jesus, he delivered him to be crucified. Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the common hall, and gathered unto him the whole band of soldiers. And they stripped him, and put on him a scarlet robe. And when they had platted a crown of thorns, they put it upon his head, and a reed in his right hand: and they bowed the knee before him, and mocked him, saying, Hail, King of the Jews! And they spit upon him, and took the reed, and smote him on the head.
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Isaiah 50:6 KJV 1900
I gave my back to the smiters, And my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not my face from shame and spitting.
Isaiah 50:6 KJV 1900
I gave my back to the smiters, And my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not my face from shame and spitting.

A Compassionate Savior

Luke 23:32–34 KJV 1900
And there were also two other, malefactors, led with him to be put to death. And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary, there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the other on the left. Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.
Luke 23:32-
The Savior gave His life, love, and blood for me. His every moment on earth was solely for me, and in His death He conquered death and hell for me. He opened wide the gates of heaven, and took away the veil that I might see Him.
He Pleaded to the Father for forgiveness then He Provided Forgiveness
Luke 23:39–43 KJV 1900
And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If thou be Christ, save thyself and us. But the other answering rebuked him, saying, Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation? And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this man hath done nothing amiss. And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.
Luke 23:39-
The Centurion witnessed this salvation, so great was the love of Jesus that it moved within his own heart.
John 19:30 KJV 1900
When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.
In the Old Testament the altar cried out “Sacrifice, sacrifice, sacrifice!” but when Jesus died on the cross the altar cried “Satisfied, satisfied, satisfied!”
Jesus satisfied the wrath of God when He died for my sin, it was a vicarious death, substitutionary. The Atonement for sin had been made.
TRANSLATION | KJV 1

What He Said

Confession

Mark 15:39 KJV 1900
And when the centurion, which stood over against him, saw that he so cried out, and gave up the ghost, he said, Truly this man was the Son of God.
Mark 15:
This was an admittance that Jesus is the Son of God, He is the Savior.
This is the charge of a man who has authority educated, and well known throughout military, politics, and society.

Cleared

His very words of confession cleared the accusations held against the Lord Jesus, it proved more over His innocency and the guilt of the people.
It made clear for those hearing that day that this was the Christ, the Son of God. Pointing the way to the one who was able to save them, just as the thief on the cross was saved that day, in a moment, even at deaths door.
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