John 19:28 - Seven Words of Christ from the Cross - word 5.

John 19:28; The Fifth of Seven Words of Christ from the Cross.

I Thirst

John 19:28 (KJV)  After this, Jesus knowing that all things were

accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled, saith, I

This is the fifth of seven utterances of Jesus as He hung upon the
cross, sometimes called the Seven Words. No gospel writer mentions
more than three, nor less than one, of these utterances.
Arranged in

point of time the seven "utterances" are as follows:
1. "Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do" (v. 34).
2. "Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in

(v. 43).
3. "Woman, behold thy son! . Behold thy mother!" (see on John

4. "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" (Matt. 27:46; Mark
5. "I thirst" (John 19:28).
6. "It is finished" (see on John 19:30).
7. "Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit" (see on Luke

[SDA Commentary]

The Gospels report seven utterances by Jesus as He hung on the

Three of these can be assigned to the first three hours, between 9
a.m. and 12 noon. Four can be assigned to the next three hours,

p.m., during which the scene was shrouded in darkness.
It is traditional during Good Friday services to meditate on these
seven utterances. Surely there is much here for us to ponder.

Bible Background Commentary]

The first word out of the darkness (My God, my God, why hast thou
forsaken me?) impresses us with the deity of Jesus. This second

out of the darkness (I thirst) reminds us of His humanity. [Victor
Bible Background Commentary re Mar.15:34]

John recorded the fifth saying, I am thirsty. The wording

that Jesus was fully conscious and was aware of fulfilling the

of prophecies. [Bible Knowledge Commentary]

I thirst; it was foretold that his tongue should cleave to his

. (Matthew Henry's Commentary)

When John was writing his gospel, round about A.D. 100, a certain
tendency had arisen in religious and philosophical thought, called
gnosticism. One of its great tenets was that spirit was altogether
good and matter altogether evil. Certain conclusions followed.
One was

that God, who was pure spirit, could never take upon himself a

because that was matter, and matter was evil. They therefore

that Jesus never had a real body. They said that he was only a
phantom. They said, for instance, that when Jesus walked, his feet
left no prints on the ground, because he was pure spirit in a

They went on to argue that God could never really suffer, and that
therefore Jesus never really suffered but went through the whole
experience of the Cross without any real pain. When the Gnostics
thought like that, they believed they were honouring God and

Jesus; but they were really destroying Jesus. If he was ever to

man, he must become man. He had to become what we are in order
to make

us what he is. That is why John stresses the fact that Jesus felt
thirst; he wished to show that he was really human and really
underwent the agony of the Cross. John goes out of his way to

the real humanity and the real suffering of Jesus. [Barclay

Thirst was one of the most distressing circumstances attending the
crucifixion. (Barnes' Notes)

The fatigue which he had undergone, the grief he had felt, the
heat of

the day, and the loss of blood, were the natural causes of this
thirst. This he would have borne without complaint; but he
wished to

give them the fullest proof of his being the Messiah, by

marking how everything relative to the Messiah, which had been

in the prophets, had its complete fulfilment in him. (Adam Clarke

I thirst. The physical need of the sufferer asserted itself, the

outward indication he permitted to escape his lips. Even so, he

a fact rather than voicing an appeal. [Wycliffe Bible Commentary]

Psalm 22:15 describes this dimension of Jesus' sufferings: "My
strength is dried up like a potsherd, and my tongue sticks to
the roof

of my mouth." Physically the cross not only drained what strength
remained in Jesus' body after the brutal whipping He had
received back

in Jerusalem, but had also instigated a raging fever that further
dried out His body tissues. This may suggest a reason why Christ
called for a drink. It was not to alleviate the thirst or
relieve the

suffering. Most likely it was to momentarily relieve the dryness

His next, triumphant words might be uttered clearly and

Despite the limits imposed by taking on our human nature, Christ
prevailed. [Victor Bible Background Commentary re Mar.15:34]

"I thirst" spoke both of physical and spiritual agony, for Christ
suffered the torment of hell for our sins. He thirsted that we

never thirst. [Wiersbe Expository Outlines]