The cross is a central symbol for a Christian today, but it was originally a particularly brutal means of execution frequently used by the ancient Romans, the equivalent of the gallows, guillotine or electric chair in later times. The word crucifixion comes from two Latin words: crux (a cross) and figere (to fix).
The cross used as a means of execution is so called because of the method of its construction: a tall upright post with a shorter cross-bar near the top. Those about to be crucified were often made to carry the cross, or at least the cross-bar, on the way to their own execution. They were then fixed to the cross bar, usually by having nails hammered through the hands or wrists, and their feet were nailed to the upright post. The term 'excruciating' derived from the position of victims which prevented them from breathing properly, so that they would eventually suffocate.
The crucifixion of Jesus
It is recorded in the Bible that Jesus was led out of the city of Jerusalem to a place called Calvary, or Golgotha, traditionally a hill, where he was crucified between two thieves. Jesus is portrayed as a willing sacrifice, sinless yet prepared to bear the guilt of the sin of humankind and even praying for forgiveness for those who nailed him to the cross.
The Gospels recount that three days after his death on the cross Jesus came back to life again, or rose from the dead, giving the promise of resurrection to his followers. Christians celebrate this event on Easter Sunday. Many Christians believe that Jesus willingly offered himself as a sacrifice. God's judgement meant that sin should be punished by death. When Jesus died, he took upon himself the sins of the world and his death paid the penalty for all that sin. By dying in this way, some Christians believe that Jesus ‘saved' people from punishment for their sin, by dying in their place. Thus, Jesus, the Son of God, restored the relationship between people and God, making salvation possible for all humankind. For this reason, the day of his death is regarded as a sad but good occasion and is celebrated as Good Friday. The cross, a symbol of shame in the ancient Roman Empire, is viewed by Christians as a symbol of hope. In a Christian church, it is usual to see at least one cross, or a crucifix, that is, a cross bearing the figure of Christ nailed to it. Many Christians wear a small cross or crucifix to indicate their faith. (See Big ideas: Death and resurrection; Redemption, salvation)
Take up your cross
Knowing that he had to die to save humankind, Christ foresaw his death on the cross, and told his followers that they might experience the same death, or must at least be prepared to suffer for their faith. Jesus told his followers, that to be a disciple, they must be prepared to suffer. ‘If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.' (Matthew 16:24). Traditionally, at least two of Christ's disciples were also crucified: Andrew is believed to have been crucified on an X-shaped cross, and Peter on an upside-down cross, since he felt unworthy to die in the same manner as Christ.
Old Testament parallels
New Testament writers and later Christian commentators drew a number of parallels between the death of Jesus on the Cross and events in the Old Testament. The Gospel of John (John 3:14) shows Jesus foretelling his death on the Cross by referring to the event when the Israelites were saved from dying because of their wrong doing, by looking at the serpent which Moses lifted up in the wilderness (Numbers 21:9). So Jesus must also be lifted up (on a cross) to save people from their sin. Other events which were seen to foreshadow the sacrificial death of God's Son on the Cross included the willingness of Abraham to sacrifice his own much-loved son Isaac (Genesis 22:1-18) and the Passover, when the blood of sacrificed lambs protected the Israelites from God's judgement (Exodus 12:21-23). (See Big ideas: Moses; Patriarchs; Passover; Atonement and sacrifice)
The crucifixion of Jesus in literature and art
Along with the Nativity, the Crucifixion is one of the most frequently depicted Christian scenes in art. It is also referred to in much literature – for example, in T.S. Eliot's poem The Journey of the Magi, where the scholars travelling to find the Christ-Child see a foreshadowing of his death in the form of ‘three trees on the low sky'. In Golding's Lord of the Flies, Simon runs to tell the boys about ‘a dead man on a hill'.
Big ideas: Redemption, salvation; Death and resurrection; Moses; Patriarchs; Passover; Atonement and sacrifice
Other cultural references
Eliot's The Journey of the Magi
Golding's Lord of the Flies
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1And the Pharisees and Sadducees came, and to test him they asked him to show them a sign from heaven. 2He answered them, When it is evening, you say, It will be fair weather, for the sky is red. 3And in the morning, It will be stormy today, for the sky is red and threatening. You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times. 4An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of Jonah. So he left them and departed. 5When the disciples reached the other side, they had forgotten to bring any bread. 6Jesus said to them, Watch and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees. 7And they began discussing it among themselves, saying, We brought no bread. 8But Jesus, aware of this, said, O you of little faith, why are you discussing among yourselves the fact that you have no bread? 9Do you not yet perceive? Do you not remember the five loaves for the five thousand, and how many baskets you gathered? 10Or the seven loaves for the four thousand, and how many baskets you gathered? 11How is it that you fail to understand that I did not speak about bread? Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees. 12Then they understood that he did not tell them to beware of the leaven of bread, but of the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees. 13Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, Who do people say that the Son of Man is? 14And they said, Some say John the Baptist, others say Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets. 15He said to them, But who do you say that I am? 16Simon Peter replied, You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. 17And Jesus answered him, Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. 18And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. 19I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. 20Then he strictly charged the disciples to tell no one that he was the Christ. 21From that time Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised. 22And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him, saying, Far be it from you, Lord! This shall never happen to you. 23But he turned and said to Peter, Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me. For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man. 24Then Jesus told his disciples, If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. 25For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. 26For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul? 27For the Son of Man is going to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay each person according to what he has done. 28Truly, I say to you, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.
1The Pharisees also with the Sadducees came, and tempting desired him that he would shew them a sign from heaven. 2He answered and said unto them, When it is evening, ye say, It will be fair weather: for the sky is red. 3And in the morning, It will be foul weather to day: for the sky is red and lowering. O ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky; but can ye not discern the signs of the times? 4A wicked and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given unto it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas. And he left them, and departed. 5And when his disciples were come to the other side, they had forgotten to take bread. 6Then Jesus said unto them, Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees. 7And they reasoned among themselves, saying, It is because we have taken no bread. 8Which when Jesus perceived, he said unto them, O ye of little faith, why reason ye among yourselves, because ye have brought no bread? 9Do ye not yet understand, neither remember the five loaves of the five thousand, and how many baskets ye took up? 10Neither the seven loaves of the four thousand, and how many baskets ye took up? 11How is it that ye do not understand that I spake it not to you concerning bread, that ye should beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees? 12Then understood they how that he bade them not beware of the leaven of bread, but of the doctrine of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees. 13When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am? 14And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets. 15He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? 16And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. 17And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. 18And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. 19And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. 20Then charged he his disciples that they should tell no man that he was Jesus the Christ. 21From that time forth began Jesus to shew unto his disciples, how that he must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day. 22Then Peter took him, and began to rebuke him, saying, Be it far from thee, Lord: this shall not be unto thee. 23But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men. 24Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. 25For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. 26For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? 27For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works. 28Verily I say unto you, There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom.
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1Now there was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. 2This man came to Jesus by night and said to him, Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God, for no one can do these signs that you do unless God is with him. 3Jesus answered him, Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God. 4Nicodemus said to him, How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother's womb and be born? 5Jesus answered, Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. 6That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7Do not marvel that I said to you, You must be born again. 8The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit. 9Nicodemus said to him, How can these things be? 10Jesus answered him, Are you the teacher of Israel and yet you do not understand these things? 11Truly, truly, I say to you, we speak of what we know, and bear witness to what we have seen, but you do not receive our testimony. 12If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you heavenly things? 13No one has ascended into heaven except he who descended from heaven, the Son of Man. 14And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15that whoever believes in him may have eternal life. 16For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. 17For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. 18Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. 19And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. 20For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. 21But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God. 22After this Jesus and his disciples went into the Judean countryside, and he remained there with them and was baptizing. 23John also was baptizing at Aenon near Salim, because water was plentiful there, and people were coming and being baptized 24(for John had not yet been put in prison). 25Now a discussion arose between some of John's disciples and a Jew over purification. 26And they came to John and said to him, Rabbi, he who was with you across the Jordan, to whom you bore witness - look, he is baptizing, and all are going to him. 27John answered, A person cannot receive even one thing unless it is given him from heaven. 28You yourselves bear me witness, that I said, I am not the Christ, but I have been sent before him. 29The one who has the bride is the bridegroom. The friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly at the bridegroom's voice. Therefore this joy of mine is now complete. 30He must increase, but I must decrease. 31He who comes from above is above all. He who is of the earth belongs to the earth and speaks in an earthly way. He who comes from heaven is above all. 32He bears witness to what he has seen and heard, yet no one receives his testimony. 33Whoever receives his testimony sets his seal to this, that God is true. 34For he whom God has sent utters the words of God, for he gives the Spirit without measure. 35The Father loves the Son and has given all things into his hand. 36Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.
1There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: 2The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him. 3Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. 4Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born? 5Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. 6That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. 8The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit. 9Nicodemus answered and said unto him, How can these things be? 10Jesus answered and said unto him, Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things? 11Verily, verily, I say unto thee, We speak that we do know, and testify that we have seen; and ye receive not our witness. 12If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things? 13And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven. 14And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: 15That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. 16For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 17For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. 18He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. 20For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. 21But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God. 22After these things came Jesus and his disciples into the land of Judaea; and there he tarried with them, and baptized. 23And John also was baptizing in Aenon near to Salim, because there was much water there: and they came, and were baptized. 24For John was not yet cast into prison. 25Then there arose a question between some of John's disciples and the Jews about purifying. 26And they came unto John, and said unto him, Rabbi, he that was with thee beyond Jordan, to whom thou barest witness, behold, the same baptizeth, and all men come to him. 27John answered and said, A man can receive nothing, except it be given him from heaven. 28Ye yourselves bear me witness, that I said, I am not the Christ, but that I am sent before him. 29He that hath the bride is the bridegroom: but the friend of the bridegroom, which standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth greatly because of the bridegroom's voice: this my joy therefore is fulfilled. 30He must increase, but I must decrease. 31He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is earthly, and speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from heaven is above all. 32And what he hath seen and heard, that he testifieth; and no man receiveth his testimony. 33He that hath received his testimony hath set to his seal that God is true. 34For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him. 35The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand. 36He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.
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1When the Canaanite, the king of Arad, who lived in the Negeb, heard that Israel was coming by the way of Atharim, he fought against Israel, and took some of them captive. 2And Israel vowed a vow to the Lord and said, If you will indeed give this people into my hand, then I will devote their cities to destruction. 3And the Lord heeded the voice of Israel and gave over the Canaanites, and they devoted them and their cities to destruction. So the name of the place was called Hormah. 4From Mount Hor they set out by the way to the Red Sea, to go around the land of Edom. And the people became impatient on the way. 5And the people spoke against God and against Moses, Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? For there is no food and no water, and we loathe this worthless food. 6Then the Lord sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people, so that many people of Israel died. 7And the people came to Moses and said, We have sinned, for we have spoken against the Lord and against you. Pray to the Lord, that he take away the serpents from us. So Moses prayed for the people. 8And the Lord said to Moses, Make a fiery serpent and set it on a pole, and everyone who is bitten, when he sees it, shall live. 9So Moses made a bronze serpent and set it on a pole. And if a serpent bit anyone, he would look at the bronze serpent and live. 10And the people of Israel set out and camped in Oboth. 11And they set out from Oboth and camped at Iye-abarim, in the wilderness that is opposite Moab, toward the sunrise. 12From there they set out and camped in the Valley of Zered. 13From there they set out and camped on the other side of the Arnon, which is in the wilderness that extends from the border of the Amorites, for the Arnon is the border of Moab, between Moab and the Amorites. 14Therefore it is said in the Book of the Wars of the Lord, Waheb in Suphah, and the valleys of the Arnon, 15and the slope of the valleys that extends to the seat of Ar, and leans to the border of Moab. 16And from there they continued to Beer; that is the well of which the Lord said to Moses, Gather the people together, so that I may give them water. 17Then Israel sang this song: Spring up, O well! - Sing to it! - 18the well that the princes made, that the nobles of the people dug, with the scepter and with their staffs. And from the wilderness they went on to Mattanah, 19and from Mattanah to Nahaliel, and from Nahaliel to Bamoth, 20and from Bamoth to the valley lying in the region of Moab by the top of Pisgah that looks down on the desert. 21Then Israel sent messengers to Sihon king of the Amorites, saying, 22Let me pass through your land. We will not turn aside into field or vineyard. We will not drink the water of a well. We will go by the King's Highway until we have passed through your territory. 23But Sihon would not allow Israel to pass through his territory. He gathered all his people together and went out against Israel to the wilderness and came to Jahaz and fought against Israel. 24And Israel defeated him with the edge of the sword and took possession of his land from the Arnon to the Jabbok, as far as to the Ammonites, for the border of the Ammonites was strong. 25And Israel took all these cities, and Israel settled in all the cities of the Amorites, in Heshbon, and in all its villages. 26For Heshbon was the city of Sihon the king of the Amorites, who had fought against the former king of Moab and taken all his land out of his hand, as far as the Arnon. 27Therefore the ballad singers say, Come to Heshbon, let it be built; let the city of Sihon be established. 28For fire came out from Heshbon, flame from the city of Sihon. It devoured Ar of Moab, and swallowed the heights of the Arnon. 29Woe to you, O Moab! You are undone, O people of Chemosh! He has made his sons fugitives, and his daughters captives, to an Amorite king, Sihon. 30So we overthrew them; Heshbon, as far as Dibon, perished; and we laid waste as far as Nophah; fire spread as far as Medeba. 31Thus Israel lived in the land of the Amorites. 32And Moses sent to spy out Jazer, and they captured its villages and dispossessed the Amorites who were there. 33Then they turned and went up by the way to Bashan. And Og the king of Bashan came out against them, he and all his people, to battle at Edrei. 34But the Lord said to Moses, Do not fear him, for I have given him into your hand, and all his people, and his land. And you shall do to him as you did to Sihon king of the Amorites, who lived at Heshbon. 35So they defeated him and his sons and all his people, until he had no survivor left. And they possessed his land.
1And when king Arad the Canaanite, which dwelt in the south, heard tell that Israel came by the way of the spies; then he fought against Israel, and took some of them prisoners. 2And Israel vowed a vow unto the LORD, and said, If thou wilt indeed deliver this people into my hand, then I will utterly destroy their cities. 3And the LORD hearkened to the voice of Israel, and delivered up the Canaanites; and they utterly destroyed them and their cities: and he called the name of the place Hormah. 4And they journeyed from mount Hor by the way of the Red sea, to compass the land of Edom: and the soul of the people was much discouraged because of the way. 5And the people spake against God, and against Moses, Wherefore have ye brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? for there is no bread, neither is there any water; and our soul loatheth this light bread. 6And the LORD sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and much people of Israel died. 7Therefore the people came to Moses, and said, We have sinned, for we have spoken against the LORD, and against thee; pray unto the LORD, that he take away the serpents from us. And Moses prayed for the people. 8And the LORD said unto Moses, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live. 9And Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole, and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man, when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived. 10And the children of Israel set forward, and pitched in Oboth. 11And they journeyed from Oboth, and pitched at Ijeabarim, in the wilderness which is before Moab, toward the sunrising. 12From thence they removed, and pitched in the valley of Zared. 13From thence they removed, and pitched on the other side of Arnon, which is in the wilderness that cometh out of the coasts of the Amorites: for Arnon is the border of Moab, between Moab and the Amorites. 14Wherefore it is said in the book of the wars of the LORD, What he did in the Red sea, and in the brooks of Arnon, 15And at the stream of the brooks that goeth down to the dwelling of Ar, and lieth upon the border of Moab. 16And from thence they went to Beer: that is the well whereof the LORD spake unto Moses, Gather the people together, and I will give them water. 17Then Israel sang this song, Spring up, O well; sing ye unto it: 18The princes digged the well, the nobles of the people digged it, by the direction of the lawgiver, with their staves. And from the wilderness they went to Mattanah: 19And from Mattanah to Nahaliel: and from Nahaliel to Bamoth: 20And from Bamoth in the valley, that is in the country of Moab, to the top of Pisgah, which looketh toward Jeshimon. 21And Israel sent messengers unto Sihon king of the Amorites, saying, 22Let me pass through thy land: we will not turn into the fields, or into the vineyards; we will not drink of the waters of the well: but we will go along by the king's high way, until we be past thy borders. 23And Sihon would not suffer Israel to pass through his border: but Sihon gathered all his people together, and went out against Israel into the wilderness: and he came to Jahaz, and fought against Israel. 24And Israel smote him with the edge of the sword, and possessed his land from Arnon unto Jabbok, even unto the children of Ammon: for the border of the children of Ammon was strong. 25And Israel took all these cities: and Israel dwelt in all the cities of the Amorites, in Heshbon, and in all the villages thereof. 26For Heshbon was the city of Sihon the king of the Amorites, who had fought against the former king of Moab, and taken all his land out of his hand, even unto Arnon. 27Wherefore they that speak in proverbs say, Come into Heshbon, let the city of Sihon be built and prepared: 28For there is a fire gone out of Heshbon, a flame from the city of Sihon: it hath consumed Ar of Moab, and the lords of the high places of Arnon. 29Woe to thee, Moab! thou art undone, O people of Chemosh: he hath given his sons that escaped, and his daughters, into captivity unto Sihon king of the Amorites. 30We have shot at them; Heshbon is perished even unto Dibon, and we have laid them waste even unto Nophah, which reacheth unto Medeba. 31Thus Israel dwelt in the land of the Amorites. 32And Moses sent to spy out Jaazer, and they took the villages thereof, and drove out the Amorites that were there. 33And they turned and went up by the way of Bashan: and Og the king of Bashan went out against them, he, and all his people, to the battle at Edrei. 34And the LORD said unto Moses, Fear him not: for I have delivered him into thy hand, and all his people, and his land; and thou shalt do to him as thou didst unto Sihon king of the Amorites, which dwelt at Heshbon. 35So they smote him, and his sons, and all his people, until there was none left him alive: and they possessed his land.
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- King James Version
1After these things God tested Abraham and said to him, Abraham! And he said, Here I am. 2He said, Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you. 3So Abraham rose early in the morning, saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him, and his son Isaac. And he cut the wood for the burnt offering and arose and went to the place of which God had told him. 4On the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes and saw the place from afar. 5Then Abraham said to his young men, Stay here with the donkey; I and the boy will go over there and worship and come again to you. 6And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering and laid it on Isaac his son. And he took in his hand the fire and the knife. So they went both of them together. 7And Isaac said to his father Abraham, My father! And he said, Here I am, my son. He said, Behold, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering? 8Abraham said, God will provide for himself the lamb for a burnt offering, my son. So they went both of them together. 9When they came to the place of which God had told him, Abraham built the altar there and laid the wood in order and bound Isaac his son and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood. 10Then Abraham reached out his hand and took the knife to slaughter his son. 11But the angel of the Lord called to him from heaven and said, Abraham, Abraham! And he said, Here I am. 12He said, Do not lay your hand on the boy or do anything to him, for now I know that you fear God, seeing you have not withheld your son, your only son, from me. 13And Abraham lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, behind him was a ram, caught in a thicket by his horns. And Abraham went and took the ram and offered it up as a burnt offering instead of his son. 14So Abraham called the name of that place, The Lord will provide; as it is said to this day, On the mount of the Lord it shall be provided. 15And the angel of the Lord called to Abraham a second time from heaven 16and said, By myself I have sworn, declares the Lord, because you have done this and have not withheld your son, your only son, 17I will surely bless you, and I will surely multiply your offspring as the stars of heaven and as the sand that is on the seashore. And your offspring shall possess the gate of his enemies, 18and in your offspring shall all the nations of the earth be blessed, because you have obeyed my voice. 19So Abraham returned to his young men, and they arose and went together to Beersheba. And Abraham lived at Beersheba. 20Now after these things it was told to Abraham, Behold, Milcah also has borne children to your brother Nahor: 21Uz his firstborn, Buz his brother, Kemuel the father of Aram, 22Chesed, Hazo, Pildash, Jidlaph, and Bethuel. 23(Bethuel fathered Rebekah.) These eight Milcah bore to Nahor, Abraham's brother. 24Moreover, his concubine, whose name was Reumah, bore Tebah, Gaham, Tahash, and Maacah.
1And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am. 2And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of. 3And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and saddled his ass, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son, and clave the wood for the burnt offering, and rose up, and went unto the place of which God had told him. 4Then on the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw the place afar off. 5And Abraham said unto his young men, Abide ye here with the ass; and I and the lad will go yonder and worship, and come again to you. 6And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering, and laid it upon Isaac his son; and he took the fire in his hand, and a knife; and they went both of them together. 7And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I, my son. And he said, Behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering? 8And Abraham said, My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together. 9And they came to the place which God had told him of; and Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar upon the wood. 10And Abraham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son. 11And the angel of the LORD called unto him out of heaven, and said, Abraham, Abraham: and he said, Here am I. 12And he said, Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou any thing unto him: for now I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son from me. 13And Abraham lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold behind him a ram caught in a thicket by his horns: and Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering in the stead of his son. 14And Abraham called the name of that place Jehovahjireh: as it is said to this day, In the mount of the LORD it shall be seen. 15And the angel of the LORD called unto Abraham out of heaven the second time, 16And said, By myself have I sworn, saith the LORD, for because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only son: 17That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies; 18And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice. 19So Abraham returned unto his young men, and they rose up and went together to Beersheba; and Abraham dwelt at Beersheba. 20And it came to pass after these things, that it was told Abraham, saying, Behold, Milcah, she hath also born children unto thy brother Nahor; 21Huz his firstborn, and Buz his brother, and Kemuel the father of Aram, 22And Chesed, and Hazo, and Pildash, and Jidlaph, and Bethuel. 23And Bethuel begat Rebekah: these eight Milcah did bear to Nahor, Abraham's brother. 24And his concubine, whose name was Reumah, she bare also Tebah, and Gaham, and Thahash, and Maachah.
- English Standard Version
- King James Version
1The Lord said to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, 2This month shall be for you the beginning of months. It shall be the first month of the year for you. 3Tell all the congregation of Israel that on the tenth day of this month every man shall take a lamb according to their fathers' houses, a lamb for a household. 4And if the household is too small for a lamb, then he and his nearest neighbor shall take according to the number of persons; according to what each can eat you shall make your count for the lamb. 5Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male a year old. You may take it from the sheep or from the goats, 6and you shall keep it until the fourteenth day of this month, when the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill their lambs at twilight. 7Then they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and the lintel of the houses in which they eat it. 8They shall eat the flesh that night, roasted on the fire; with unleavened bread and bitter herbs they shall eat it. 9Do not eat any of it raw or boiled in water, but roasted, its head with its legs and its inner parts. 10And you shall let none of it remain until the morning; anything that remains until the morning you shall burn. 11In this manner you shall eat it: with your belt fastened, your sandals on your feet, and your staff in your hand. And you shall eat it in haste. It is the Lord's Passover. 12For I will pass through the land of Egypt that night, and I will strike all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and on all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgments: I am the Lord. 13The blood shall be a sign for you, on the houses where you are. And when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and no plague will befall you to destroy you, when I strike the land of Egypt. 14This day shall be for you a memorial day, and you shall keep it as a feast to the Lord; throughout your generations, as a statute forever, you shall keep it as a feast. 15Seven days you shall eat unleavened bread. On the first day you shall remove leaven out of your houses, for if anyone eats what is leavened, from the first day until the seventh day, that person shall be cut off from Israel. 16On the first day you shall hold a holy assembly, and on the seventh day a holy assembly. No work shall be done on those days. But what everyone needs to eat, that alone may be prepared by you. 17And you shall observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread, for on this very day I brought your hosts out of the land of Egypt. Therefore you shall observe this day, throughout your generations, as a statute forever. 18In the first month, from the fourteenth day of the month at evening, you shall eat unleavened bread until the twenty-first day of the month at evening. 19For seven days no leaven is to be found in your houses. If anyone eats what is leavened, that person will be cut off from the congregation of Israel, whether he is a sojourner or a native of the land. 20You shall eat nothing leavened; in all your dwelling places you shall eat unleavened bread. 21Then Moses called all the elders of Israel and said to them, Go and select lambs for yourselves according to your clans, and kill the Passover lamb. 22Take a bunch of hyssop and dip it in the blood that is in the basin, and touch the lintel and the two doorposts with the blood that is in the basin. None of you shall go out of the door of his house until the morning. 23For the Lord will pass through to strike the Egyptians, and when he sees the blood on the lintel and on the two doorposts, the Lord will pass over the door and will not allow the destroyer to enter your houses to strike you. 24You shall observe this rite as a statute for you and for your sons forever. 25And when you come to the land that the Lord will give you, as he has promised, you shall keep this service. 26And when your children say to you, What do you mean by this service? 27you shall say, It is the sacrifice of the Lord's Passover, for he passed over the houses of the people of Israel in Egypt, when he struck the Egyptians but spared our houses. And the people bowed their heads and worshiped. 28Then the people of Israel went and did so; as the Lord had commanded Moses and Aaron, so they did. 29At midnight the Lord struck down all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the firstborn of the captive who was in the dungeon, and all the firstborn of the livestock. 30And Pharaoh rose up in the night, he and all his servants and all the Egyptians. And there was a great cry in Egypt, for there was not a house where someone was not dead. 31Then he summoned Moses and Aaron by night and said, Up, go out from among my people, both you and the people of Israel; and go, serve the Lord, as you have said. 32Take your flocks and your herds, as you have said, and be gone, and bless me also! 33The Egyptians were urgent with the people to send them out of the land in haste. For they said, We shall all be dead. 34So the people took their dough before it was leavened, their kneading bowls being bound up in their cloaks on their shoulders. 35The people of Israel had also done as Moses told them, for they had asked the Egyptians for silver and gold jewelry and for clothing. 36And the Lord had given the people favor in the sight of the Egyptians, so that they let them have what they asked. Thus they plundered the Egyptians. 37And the people of Israel journeyed from Rameses to Succoth, about six hundred thousand men on foot, besides women and children. 38A mixed multitude also went up with them, and very much livestock, both flocks and herds. 39And they baked unleavened cakes of the dough that they had brought out of Egypt, for it was not leavened, because they were thrust out of Egypt and could not wait, nor had they prepared any provisions for themselves. 40The time that the people of Israel lived in Egypt was 430 years. 41At the end of 430 years, on that very day, all the hosts of the Lord went out from the land of Egypt. 42It was a night of watching by the Lord, to bring them out of the land of Egypt; so this same night is a night of watching kept to the Lord by all the people of Israel throughout their generations. 43And the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, This is the statute of the Passover: no foreigner shall eat of it, 44but every slave that is bought for money may eat of it after you have circumcised him. 45No foreigner or hired worker may eat of it. 46It shall be eaten in one house; you shall not take any of the flesh outside the house, and you shall not break any of its bones. 47All the congregation of Israel shall keep it. 48If a stranger shall sojourn with you and would keep the Passover to the Lord, let all his males be circumcised. Then he may come near and keep it; he shall be as a native of the land. But no uncircumcised person shall eat of it. 49There shall be one law for the native and for the stranger who sojourns among you. 50All the people of Israel did just as the Lord commanded Moses and Aaron. 51And on that very day the Lord brought the people of Israel out of the land of Egypt by their hosts.
1And the LORD spake unto Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt saying, 2This month shall be unto you the beginning of months: it shall be the first month of the year to you. 3Speak ye unto all the congregation of Israel, saying, In the tenth day of this month they shall take to them every man a lamb, according to the house of their fathers, a lamb for an house: 4And if the household be too little for the lamb, let him and his neighbor next unto his house take it according to the number of the souls; every man according to his eating shall make your count for the lamb. 5Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats: 6And ye shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening. 7And they shall take of the blood, and strike it on the two side posts and on the upper door post of the houses, wherein they shall eat it. 8And they shall eat the flesh in that night, roast with fire, and unleavened bread; and with bitter herbs they shall eat it. 9Eat not of it raw, nor sodden at all with water, but roast with fire; his head with his legs, and with the purtenance thereof. 10And ye shall let nothing of it remain until the morning; and that which remaineth of it until the morning ye shall burn with fire. 11And thus shall ye eat it; with your loins girded, your shoes on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and ye shall eat it in haste: it is the LORD's passover. 12For I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am the LORD. 13And the blood shall be to you for a token upon the houses where ye are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you, when I smite the land of Egypt. 14And this day shall be unto you for a memorial; and ye shall keep it a feast to the LORD throughout your generations; ye shall keep it a feast by an ordinance for ever. 15Seven days shall ye eat unleavened bread; even the first day ye shall put away leaven out of your houses: for whosoever eateth leavened bread from the first day until the seventh day, that soul shall be cut off from Israel. 16And in the first day there shall be an holy convocation, and in the seventh day there shall be an holy convocation to you; no manner of work shall be done in them, save that which every man must eat, that only may be done of you. 17And ye shall observe the feast of unleavened bread; for in this selfsame day have I brought your armies out of the land of Egypt: therefore shall ye observe this day in your generations by an ordinance for ever. 18In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at even, ye shall eat unleavened bread, until the one and twentieth day of the month at even. 19Seven days shall there be no leaven found in your houses: for whosoever eateth that which is leavened, even that soul shall be cut off from the congregation of Israel, whether he be a stranger, or born in the land. 20Ye shall eat nothing leavened; in all your habitations shall ye eat unleavened bread. 21Then Moses called for all the elders of Israel, and said unto them, Draw out and take you a lamb according to your families, and kill the passover. 22And ye shall take a bunch of hyssop, and dip it in the blood that is in the basin, and strike the lintel and the two side posts with the blood that is in the basin; and none of you shall go out at the door of his house until the morning. 23For the LORD will pass through to smite the Egyptians; and when he seeth the blood upon the lintel, and on the two side posts, the LORD will pass over the door, and will not suffer the destroyer to come in unto your houses to smite you. 24And ye shall observe this thing for an ordinance to thee and to thy sons for ever. 25And it shall come to pass, when ye be come to the land which the LORD will give you, according as he hath promised, that ye shall keep this service. 26And it shall come to pass, when your children shall say unto you, What mean ye by this service? 27That ye shall say, It is the sacrifice of the LORD's passover, who passed over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt, when he smote the Egyptians, and delivered our houses. And the people bowed the head and worshipped. 28And the children of Israel went away, and did as the LORD had commanded Moses and Aaron, so did they. 29And it came to pass, that at midnight the LORD smote all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh that sat on his throne unto the firstborn of the captive that was in the dungeon; and all the firstborn of cattle. 30And Pharaoh rose up in the night, he, and all his servants, and all the Egyptians; and there was a great cry in Egypt; for there was not a house where there was not one dead. 31And he called for Moses and Aaron by night, and said, Rise up, and get you forth from among my people, both ye and the children of Israel; and go, serve the LORD, as ye have said. 32Also take your flocks and your herds, as ye have said, and be gone; and bless me also. 33And the Egyptians were urgent upon the people, that they might send them out of the land in haste; for they said, We be all dead men. 34And the people took their dough before it was leavened, their kneadingtroughs being bound up in their clothes upon their shoulders. 35And the children of Israel did according to the word of Moses; and they borrowed of the Egyptians jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and raiment: 36And the LORD gave the people favor in the sight of the Egyptians, so that they lent unto them such things as they required. And they spoiled the Egyptians. 37And the children of Israel journeyed from Rameses to Succoth, about six hundred thousand on foot that were men, beside children. 38And a mixed multitude went up also with them; and flocks, and herds, even very much cattle. 39And they baked unleavened cakes of the dough which they brought forth out of Egypt, for it was not leavened; because they were thrust out of Egypt, and could not tarry, neither had they prepared for themselves any victual. 40Now the sojourning of the children of Israel, who dwelt in Egypt, was four hundred and thirty years. 41And it came to pass at the end of the four hundred and thirty years, even the selfsame day it came to pass, that all the hosts of the LORD went out from the land of Egypt. 42It is a night to be much observed unto the LORD for bringing them out from the land of Egypt: this is that night of the LORD to be observed of all the children of Israel in their generations. 43And the LORD said unto Moses and Aaron, This is the ordinance of the passover: There shall no stranger eat thereof: 44But every man's servant that is bought for money, when thou hast circumcised him, then shall he eat thereof. 45A foreigner and an hired servant shall not eat thereof. 46In one house shall it be eaten; thou shalt not carry forth ought of the flesh abroad out of the house; neither shall ye break a bone thereof. 47All the congregation of Israel shall keep it. 48And when a stranger shall sojourn with thee, and will keep the passover to the LORD, let all his males be circumcised, and then let him come near and keep it; and he shall be as one that is born in the land: for no uncircumcised person shall eat thereof. 49One law shall be to him that is homeborn, and unto the stranger that sojourneth among you. 50Thus did all the children of Israel; as the LORD commanded Moses and Aaron, so did they. 51And it came to pass the selfsame day, that the LORD did bring the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt by their armies.
1. Instrument of execution used in the Roman Empire.
2. The means by which Jesus Christ was put to death and therefore the primary symbol of the Christian faith, representing the way in which he is believed to have won forgiveness for humankind.
Name originally given to disciples of Jesus by outsiders and gradually adopted by the Early Church.
Execution by nailing or binding a person to a cross.
The Christian Bible consists of the Old Testament scriptures inherited from Judaism, together with the New Testament, drawn from writings produced from c.40-125CE, which describe the life of Jesus and the establishment of the Christian church.
The name given to the man believed by Christians to be the Son of God. Also given the title Christ, meaning 'anointed one' or Messiah. His life is recorded most fully in the Four Gospels.
The city on a hill (Mt. Zion) which King David captured and made the capital of Israel. It was the site of the Temple built by Solomon and of the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus. Today it is still a holy city for Jews, Christians and Muslims.
The location, just outside Jerusalem, where according to the New Testament, Jesus is said to have been put to death on a cross.
Name for the place where Jesus was crucified, also called 'the place of the the skull'.
1. The giving up of something deeply valued
2. Offerings a worshipper gives to God to express devotion, gratitude, or the need for forgiveness.
3. In the Bible, the sacrifice is seen to take away guilt and blame.
Disobedience to the known will of God. According to Christian theology human beings have displayed a pre-disposition to sin since the Fall of Humankind.
1. The action of forgiving; pardon of a fault, remission of a debt.
2. Being freed from the burden of guilt, after committing a sin or crime, through being pardoned by the one hurt or offended.
Gospel - Literally 'good news' - used of the message preached by Jesus recorded in the New Testament.
1. The central message of the Christian faith
2. Title given to the four New Testament books which describe the life of Jesus Christ
Literally, rising to life again. In the Bible it is specifically applied to Jesus Christ's coming to life after his crucifixion; and from thence, to the hope of all believers that after death, they will be raised to a new life in heaven.
Day on which the Church celebrates the Resurrection of Christ three days after his death on the cross.
Title used of Jesus in the New Testament and in Christian statements of belief.
In the Bible, salvation is seen as God's commitment to save or rescue his people from sin (and other dangers) and to establish his kingdom.
The Friday before Easter Sunday and the day when the death of Jesus on the cross is commemorated. It is called 'good' because the death of Jesus is believed to have made it possible for human sin to be forgiven.
1. Term for a worshipping community of Christians.
2. The building in which Christians traditionally meet for worship.
3. The worldwide community of Christian believers.
A symbol depicting Jesus' body on the cross, intended to convey his death and suffering (or sometimes his victory) on behalf of humankind.
Title (eventually used as name) given to Jesus, refering to an anointed person set apart for a special task such as a king.
Belief and trust in someone or something.
1. Term meaning learner or follower.
2. Used in the New Testament in particularly of the twelve apostles of Jesus.
3. Now applied more generally to all Christians.
In the New Testament, a fisherman, who told his brother Simon Peter about Jesus, and one of the twelve disciples or apostles of Jesus.
One of the twelve disciples of Jesus, originally called Simon but given the name Cephas by Jesus.
A 'testament' is a covenant (binding agreement), a term used in the Bible of God's relationship with his people. The New Testament is the second part of the Christian Bible. Its name comes from the new covenant or relationship with God.
A 'testament' is a covenant or binding agreement and is a term used in the Bible of God's relationship with his people). The sacred writings of Judaism (the Hebrew Bible). These also form the first part of the Christian Bible.
Descendants of Israel (Jacob) and occupants of Israel.
A snake. In some religions and mythologies seen as the embodiment of deceit, cunning and evil, and associated with Satan.
Very important Jewish leader described in the Book of Exodus in the Old Testament. Moses led the Jewish people out of slavery in Egypt to the Promised Land. Received the Ten Commandments form God.
In the Old Testament Abraham was called by God to search for the land God promised to him and told he would be the 'father of many nations'
In the Old Testament the son of Abraham, father of Esau and Jacob, husband of Rebekah.
The Jewish spring festival celebrating the deliverance of the people of Israel from slavery in Egypt.
The birth of Jesus
John is quite unlike the other gospels in its concentration on the significance of Jesus as seen through the eyes of the beloved Disciple who was almost certainly John the son of Zebedee, the traditional author of this gospel. It is the gospel of signs and includes the unique series of I am sayings by Jesus e.g. 'I am the way, the truth and the life'. This recalls the portrayal of God as the I AM in the Old Testament (Ex 3:14).
Famous stories from the Bible: Feeding of the 5000; Jesus and Nicodemus; Jesus, his death and resurrection
Big ideas: Bread; Blood; Cross; Sheep, shepherd, lambs; Miracles