Family Relationship :: Woman, behold thy son! … Behold thy mother!


Jesus’ third saying from the Cross was directed to his mother and to his beloved disciple who was standing by her. To her, he said, “Woman, behold thy son!” and to him, he said, “Behold thy mother!” In this saying, Jesus takes two people who are unrelated and establishes a family relationship (mother – son) between them.

Points to ponder:
To all who receive Jesus and who believe in his name, he gave them the power to be called the sons of God (John 1:12) and Jesus expressed that whoever does the will of God his Father, is his brother and sister and mother (Matthew 12:50). In other words, Jesus relates those who are unrelated into a family – the very family of God. On the Cross, Jesus established a family relationship. Today, he seeks to establish your relationship and mine with God himself. Have you tasted the joy of God’s salvation? O taste and see (behold) that the Lord God is good (Psalm 34:8) wanting you to become part of his family. Do you believe? Behold …

John 19:26-27 (KJV)
26 When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son!
27 Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home.

Woman, behold thy son! … Behold thy mother!


Jesus’ third saying from the Cross was directed to his mother and to his beloved disciple who was standing by her. To her, he said, “Woman, behold thy son!” and to him, he said, “Behold thy mother!” The action verb in both these statements is “Behold”. This word is a word that is a call to attention and literally has it roots from combining the words “be” and “to hold”. It is more than just a glance or a look – it means to keep the gaze on and to hold on to that sight.

As part of dispensing his duties (as any Son should), in this saying, Jesus was profoundly establishing a truth – the truth of holding on in sight to relationships – never losing focus on familial relationship.

Points to ponder:
To all those who have believed in Jesus, and who have received and accepted him, God has given them the power to be called the sons (children) of God (John 1:12). In other words, we are part of God’s family, if we believe and receive Jesus Christ, to be our Lord and Savior. God is reminding us to look at and hold on to that familial relationship, we have with God.

The Bible makes it amply clear that this is what we are counseled and commanded to do – Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising its shame (Hebrews 12:2a). Notice how this rendition is “looking” and not just “look”, implying that this is a constant action – to behold – to keep the gaze – to hold on in view.

To the Church, the Woman (bride of Christ), God, the Father is saying, Behold his Son, Jesus Christ – looking on to him perpetually. What are you beholding?

John 19:26-27 (KJV)
26 When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son!
27 Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home.

Hebrews 12:2 (KJV)
Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Behold :: Woman, Behold thy Son! … Behold thy Mother!


Jesus’ third saying from the Cross was addressed to Mary his mother and to the disciple whom he loved and it is recorded in the gospel according to the apostle John in chapter 19 verses 26 and 27. In this saying, Jesus tells Mary and the disciple standing beside the Cross,  to look (behold) at each other, and from that hour, the disciple takes her to be part of his own home (family).

Jesus addresses his mother as ‘Woman’. The very first time the word ‘Woman’ is used in the Bible, it is used in the context of establishing a family, when Adam (the first man) calls Eve (his wife) ‘woman’ as he recite the first love poem of her being the bone of his bones and the flesh of his flesh (Genesis 2:23). From the Cross again, Jesus is using the same word ‘Woman’, to address his mother, here in the context of establishing a family for her.

Also, did you notice that Jesus tells his mother and his disciple to look at each other. Just as it was in the garden of Eden, God is interested in establishing familial relationships from the Cross.

Points to ponder:
The world is attempting to redefine what constitutes a family, many a times, violating the plan that God has planned since the first family between a man and a woman, in the garden of Eden. God wants us to look (behold) at the family and accept the widows, orphans, and others who have no one for them, as our own family. After all the sacrifice of Jesus on the Cross beckons us to look at (behold) God as he takes us, the Church which is the bride (woman) of Jesus Christ, to be adopted into his family. Church, Behold the Family! Behold!

John 19:26-27 (KJV)
26
 When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son!
27 Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home.

Let’s talk business :: From the Cross – 3rd Saying


When Jesus was twelve years old, he questioned, “Wist ye not that I must be about my Father’s business?” (Luke 2:49) and on his crucifixion, he spoke seven sayings that are often expanded upon on Good Friday services, all over the world. This series, ‘Let’s talk business’ is a look at the seven sayings of Jesus Christ from the Cross, from a business perspective. Today we shall look at the third saying from the Cross, “Woman, behold thy son … behold thy mother” as recorded in John 19:26-27.

According to BusinessDictionary.com, the term “Merger” is used to describe a voluntary amalgamation of two firms on roughly equal terms into one new legal entity. Mergers are effected by exchange of pre-merger stock/shares for the stock of the new firm.

When Jesus told his mother, ‘Woman, behold your son’, referring to the disciple whom he loved and to the disciple, ‘Behold your mother’, referring to his mother, he was in a sense, establishing a merger between two families into one. This merger was effected by the exchange of his life for ours and after his resurrection, he called his disciples, ‘brethren’, establishing the fact that the disciples who believed in him were part of his family and joint heirs in the kingdom of God.

Points to ponder:
Are you part of God’s family? In other words, have you believed in the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior. In business terms, that would be akin to asking, ‘Have you merged with Jesus Christ?’

John 19:26-27 (KJV)
26 When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son!
27 Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home.

Woman, Behold thy son! … Behold thy mother!


The third saying of Jesus as He hung on the Cross, living up to His Name, which was to save His people from their sins was to his mother and his disciple who stood by her. To the mother, he said “WOMAN, behold thy son!” and to the disciple, He said “Behold thy mother!” (John 19:26-27).

Seeing his mother and the other women, his near and dear ones at the foot of the cross PIQUES Jesus to state a PROFOUND FACT and exposit a PROVISION of MAGNITUDE proportions and say the THIRD saying on the cross. Woman, Behold thy son! Behold thy mother!

As we analyze this saying, let us break the saying into two main subheadings

  1. WOMAN (vs 26)
  2. BEHOLD THY SON! BEHOLD THY MOTHER! (vs 27)

WOMAN

Ever wonder why Jesus addressed Mary his mother as Woman and not Mother?

He called her woman to remind Mary of her PURPOSE that she was a VESSEL, God’s handmaid in humble obedience (Matthew 1:21, Luke 1:26-38) and that which was prophesied by SIMEON’s was now being FULFILLED (Luke 2:34-35). He was DISASSOCIATING every human tie to establish heavenly ASSOCIATIONS.

He called her woman to let all know that he was SON OF GOD. Epitaphs on tombstone reflect the sonship of the deceased. The TITULUS (Inscription) above his bruised and pierced with thorns head did not read that he was Jesus, the carpenter’s son, the son of Mary but instead read INRI – IESVS NAZARENVS REX IVDAEORVM (Latin) which meant Jesus the Nazarene, King of the Jews (English).

He called her woman because His TIME HAD COME. The two familiar references in the Bible in which Jesus addresses his mother Mary and in both cases, he calls her “Woman” is 1st at the wedding at Cana. There he calls her woman, and tells her that his hour is not yet come (John 2:4). Now the 2nd time: On the Cross, he calls her woman because His Time had Come. He was going in for the final round. SIN WAS BATTLING with the captain of salvation, whispering hellish threats in His ears, only to hear Him say “It is Finished”. But before he could say that “It is Finished”, He had some earthly obligations to complete one of which was the provisional arrangements for his family, his mother.

And that’s when he begins by saying, Woman …and completes it saying  Behold thy son! (and to the disciple, he said) Behold thy mother!

BEHOLD THY SON! BEHOLD THY MOTHER!

Why did Jesus say “Behold thy son! Behold thy mother!”?

He was fulfilling the fifth commandment – Honor thy Father and thy Mother (Exodus 20). He was making provisions for his mother. He who does not provide for his relatives, especially his family, is worse than an infidel and has denied the faith. (1 Timothy 5:8).

Jesus was also reestablishing a profound fact – the importance of the family, which is the first institution on earth, the basic unit of society. The first time, God says it is not good was when he saw man without a helper and made him a family, by creating a woman (help mate) out of man. The family in Heaven is God, the Father, Jesus, the Son and His Holy Spirit, the Helper.

Salvation is plural, not singular. It includes the family. Rahab and her family were saved. Zacchaeus was told that Salvation had come to his house. When the disciples were questioned, What must I do to be saved? Though the question was singular, the answer came in plural as the disciples replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved and your household

Even with no psychological anesthesia to dilute the awful crushing reality of impending death, even in this crisis, Jesus’ focus was unwavered. He saw his mother, he saw his disciple is what the Bible says. The operative word is ‘SAW’. Jesus’ eyes saw his mother and his beloved disciple and as they focus on him, he makes them focus on each other. They looked up at him and he made them look at each other.

John 19:26-27 (KJV)
26
When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son!
27 Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home.

Broken for you and me


As I pondered over the word ‘broken’, I wondered as to what are some of the things that were broken in order to crucify, or in the crucifixion of Jesus. Some that surfaced are given below,

  1. The Law was broken
    The 9th commandment (law) which said that you shall not bear any false witness (Exodus 20:16) was broken, for when those who tried Jesus found no fault in Him (Luke 23:4, Mark 14:55), many bore false witnesses with contradictory accounts against Jesus (Mark 14:56-59).
  2. Jesus’ body was broken
    In describing His manner of death (by crucifixion), Jesus informed His disciples, in the event that we familiarly know as the Lord’s supper, that His body will be broken, by symbolically breaking the bread and presenting it to His disciples with the following words “Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me” (1 Corinthians 11:24). Though this may seem contradictory to the verse that states that none of His bones were broken (John 19:36), we must recognize that the breaking of one’s body need not necessarily mean that one’s bones need to be broken as well. There is absolutely no doubt however that his body was scourged, beaten, pierced and marred (literally broken) in the events preceding his crucifixion.
  3. Jesus’ heavenly relationship with God the Father was broken
    When Jesus the sinless became sin (2 Corinthians 5:21), a Holy God (the Father) who could have nothing to do with sin, had to severe the Unitarian relationship that He had with with His Son, Jesus, which leads to Jesus crying in agony, “My God, My God, why have YOU forsaken me?” (Mark 15:34).
  4. Jesus’ earthly relationship with his mother was broken
    From the Cross, Jesus refers to Mary, his earthly mother, not as mother but as woman, when he hands over responsibility to his beloved disciple John to care for Mary (John 19:26-27). When the penalty for sin was paid by Jesus, the Lamb of God (Agnus Dei), Mary’s boy child demonstrated and vocally expressed that He was indeed the foretold seed of the woman (Genesis 3:15), the Son of God (Isaiah 9:6).

What are some of the other things that you can think off that were broken in the redeeming and saving act of Jesus, in the events that led to and in the crucifixion of Jesus Christ?

Earthly laws against God, heavenly and earthy relationship of Jesus, including His body was broken. Why? Jesus was broken, so that the broken relationship of God with man could be restored.
He would rather be broken for you and me, than be broken without you and me.