Bible Question:

What happened in the last 24 hours of Jesus' life?

Bible Answer:

The last 24 hours of Jesus’ life is recorded in Matthew 26:6-27:66; Mark 14:3-15:47; Luke 22:1-23:56; and John 11:55-19:42. The last day of Jesus’ life appears to have started after Judas agreed with the Jewish religious leaders to betray Jesus for thirty pieces of silver. After that the disciples started preparing for the passover meal in the upper room. It is there that Jesus washed the disciples’ feet and used His own personal illustration to encourage them to show humility and love to one another. Then Jesus identified Judas as His betrayer. Judas must have been very surprised and left shortly after that. After Judas’ departure, Jesus took some time to teach His disciples and sing a song at the end of the meal. Then Jesus went to the Garden of Gethsemane to pray. Eventually, Judas arrived with some soldiers and others, found Jesus in the garden, and betrayed Him with a kiss. Peter drew his sword and cut-off the ear of the High Priest’s servant in an act of defense, but Jesus rebuked him and healed the servant’s ear. Then Jesus asked them, “Whom do you seek?” When they said, “Jesus the Nazarene,” Jesus answered, “I am He.” Immediately, the soldiers drew back and fell to the ground. No one had touched them.

Jesus was taken prisoner to the Sanhedrin Council for trial. The trial occurred throughout the night. He was condemned by the Sanhedrin Council and then taken to Pontius Pilate. Pontius Pilate could not find any reason to crucify Jesus and considered Him to be a righteous man (Matt. 27:1-2; Luke 23:15). Therefore, he sent him to Herod Antipas who found nothing wrong with Jesus and returned Him to Pilate. In response Pilate gave the crowd a choice, release a notorious criminal named Barabbas or release Jesus. The crowd chanted for Barabbas’ release. So Pontius Pilate released Barabbas and sent Jesus to the cross. After all the ancient prophecies had been fulfilled except for one, Jesus asked for something to drink. The soldiers gave Him sour wine. After Jesus tasted it He spit it out. Then He willingly died. He had completed His task. Everything was done and so He said, “It is finished!”

Therefore when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished!” And He bowed His head and gave up His spirit. (NASB) John 19:30

Jesus died Friday afternoon before the Jewish Sabbath started. He was buried that afternoon in a cave. A squad of Roman soldiers guarded the tomb to prevent anyone from tampering with the body. Three days later, Jesus returned to life. Here is a great summary of Jesus’ life by the medical doctor Luke.

Men of Israel, listen to these words: Jesus the Nazarene, a man attested to you by God with miracles and wonders and signs which God performed through Him in your midst, just as you yourselves know— this Man, delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put Him to death. But God raised Him up again, putting an end to the agony of death, since it was impossible for Him to be held in its power. (NASB) Acts 2:22-24


Jesus was the perfect lamb of God who took away the sin of the world. Now we can have our sins removed by believing in Him. This is the key event in history – God became like us in order to rescue us.

Related Book:

The Greatest Story Ever Told by Johnston M Cheney., p.191-260. …

Suggested Links:

Searching For God
Escape By His Blood
Pontius Pilate refers to Jesus in official records
Predictions of Jesus' Death and Resurrection