They kill Jesus on a cross
26 So the soldiers took Jesus away, to go to the place where they would kill him. On the way, they took hold of a man called Simon. This man was from the town called Cyrene. He was coming in from outside the city. The soldiers took the cross that Jesus was carrying on his shoulders. They made Simon carry it instead as he walked behind Jesus.
27 A very large crowd of people were following Jesus. There were many women among them. They were crying with loud voices. They were weeping and crying because they were very sad. 28 So Jesus turned round and he said to them, ‘You women that live in Jerusalem, do not weep for me. Instead, cry for yourselves and for your children. 29 Listen! Days will come when people will say, “It is better for those women that could not have babies. Those women that never had babies to feed are the happy ones!” 30 People will begin to say, “It would be better if we were dead.” They will ask the mountains to fall on top of them. They will ask the hills to cover them up. 31 There is much trouble and pain now. But much worse things will happen! Now the fire burns slowly. But soon it will be like a fire that quickly burns dry wood!’
23:31Again, Jesus is telling the people that enemies will soon destroy Jerusalem. Jesus is like a tree that is alive. He has not done anything wrong. But still the Romans will kill him on a cross. The bad people in Jerusalem are like dry wood. They have done many wrong things. The Romans will do worse things to them.
32 The soldiers also took two other men out of the prison. These men had done bad things. The soldiers were going to kill them and Jesus together. 33 They took them to the place that is called ‘The Skull’. There they fixed Jesus to a cross to die. They also fixed the two bad men to crosses. One of these men was on the right side of Jesus. The other was on his left side.
34 Jesus said, ‘Father, these people do not know what they are doing. So please forgive them.’
The soldiers then picked up Jesus' clothes for themselves. They played a game to decide who would receive each piece of his clothes. 35 The people stood there and they were watching. The Jewish leaders were laughing at Jesus. They said, ‘He saved other people, did he? Then he should save his own life! Then we will know that he is really the Messiah, the man that God has chosen.’
36 The soldiers also laughed at him. They came up to him and they offered him cheap wine to drink. 37 They said, ‘If you are really the King of the Jews, save your own life.’
38 There was also a notice fixed at the top of the cross. It said, ‘This is the King of the Jews.’
39 One of the bad men on a cross at the side of Jesus started to say bad things against him. He shouted, ‘You say that you are the Messiah, don't you? Then save your own life and save our lives too!’
40 But the bad man on the other cross told him that he should be quiet. He said, ‘You should be more afraid of God. We will die here, as well as him. 41 We two men have done very bad things. So, it is right that we should die. But this man has not done anything wrong.’ 42 Then the man said to Jesus, ‘Remember me, Jesus, when you start to rule in your kingdom.’ 43 Jesus replied, ‘I promise you, today you will be with me in paradise.’