John 19:29
Parallel Verses
New International Version
A jar of wine vinegar was there, so they soaked a sponge in it, put the sponge on a stalk of the hyssop plant, and lifted it to Jesus' lips.

New Living Translation
A jar of sour wine was sitting there, so they soaked a sponge in it, put it on a hyssop branch, and held it up to his lips.

English Standard Version
A jar full of sour wine stood there, so they put a sponge full of the sour wine on a hyssop branch and held it to his mouth.

New American Standard Bible
A jar full of sour wine was standing there; so they put a sponge full of the sour wine upon a branch of hyssop and brought it up to His mouth.

King James Bible
Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a spunge with vinegar, and put it upon hyssop, and put it to his mouth.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
A jar full of sour wine was sitting there; so they fixed a sponge full of sour wine on hyssop and held it up to His mouth.

International Standard Version
A jar of sour wine was standing there, so they put a sponge full of the wine on a branch of hyssop and held it to his mouth.

NET Bible
A jar full of sour wine was there, so they put a sponge soaked in sour wine on a branch of hyssop and lifted it to his mouth.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
And a vessel had been set full of vinegar, but they filled a sponge from the vinegar and placed it on hyssop and they put it near to his mouth.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
A jar filled with vinegar was there. So the soldiers put a sponge soaked in the vinegar on a hyssop stick and held it to his mouth.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar, and they filled a sponge with vinegar and put it upon hyssop and put it to his mouth.

King James 2000 Bible
Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a sponge with vinegar, and put it upon hyssop, and put it to his mouth.

American King James Version
Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a sponge with vinegar, and put it on hyssop, and put it to his mouth.

American Standard Version
There was set there a vessel full of vinegar: so they put a sponge full of the vinegar upon hyssop, and brought it to his mouth.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Now there was a vessel set there full of vinegar. And they, putting a sponge full of vinegar and hyssop, put it to his mouth.

Darby Bible Translation
There was a vessel therefore there full of vinegar, and having filled a sponge with vinegar, and putting hyssop round it, they put it up to his mouth.

English Revised Version
There was set there a vessel full of vinegar: so they put a sponge full of the vinegar upon hyssop, and brought it to his mouth.

Webster's Bible Translation
Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a spunge with vinegar, and put it upon hyssop, and put it to his mouth.

Weymouth New Testament
There was a jar of wine standing there. With this wine they filled a sponge, put it on the end of a stalk of hyssop, and lifted it to His mouth.

World English Bible
Now a vessel full of vinegar was set there; so they put a sponge full of the vinegar on hyssop, and held it at his mouth.

Young's Literal Translation
a vessel, therefore, was placed full of vinegar, and they having filled a sponge with vinegar, and having put it around a hyssop stalk, did put it to his mouth;
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

19:19-30 Here are some remarkable circumstances of Jesus' death, more fully related than before. Pilate would not gratify the chief priests by allowing the writing to be altered; which was doubtless owing to a secret power of God upon his heart, that this statement of our Lord's character and authority might continue. Many things done by the Roman soldiers were fulfilments of the prophecies of the Old Testament. All things therein written shall be fulfilled. Christ tenderly provided for his mother at his death. Sometimes, when God removes one comfort from us, he raises up another for us, where we looked not for it. Christ's example teaches all men to honour their parents in life and death; to provide for their wants, and to promote their comfort by every means in their power. Especially observe the dying word wherewith Jesus breathed out his soul. It is finished; that is, the counsels of the Father concerning his sufferings were now fulfilled. It is finished; all the types and prophecies of the Old Testament, which pointed at the sufferings of the Messiah, were accomplished. It is finished; the ceremonial law is abolished; the substance is now come, and all the shadows are done away. It is finished; an end is made of transgression by bringing in an everlasting righteousness. His sufferings were now finished, both those of his soul, and those of his body. It is finished; the work of man's redemption and salvation is now completed. His life was not taken from him by force, but freely given up.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 29. - There was set there a vessel full of vinegar, probably for the use of the soldiers, and occasionally offered to the sufferers to soothe a part of their torment. John clearly associates this fact with the unconscious fulfillment of prophecy. Matthew gives it, with strange lack of connection, as following the cry, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" So they (Matthew, "one") having placed a sponge full of the vinegar upon hyssop. This hyssop plant, if identical with the caper plant, does produce stems three or four feet long, and may therefore be identical with the "reed" mentioned in Matthew and Mark, while Luke (Luke 23:36) refers the act to the soldiers offering him vinegar to drink, saying, "Let us see whether Elias will come and save him." They put it, brought it, presented it to his mouth. This was not the stupefying draught which he refused, but an exhilarating one.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar,.... In a place near at hand, as Nonnus observes; not on purpose, for the sake of them that were crucified, either to refresh their spirits, or stop a too great effusion of blood, that they might continue the longer in their misery; but for the use of the soldiers who crucified Christ, vinegar being part of the allowance of Roman soldiers (m), and what they used to drink: sometimes it was mixed with water; which mixed liquor they called "Posca" (n), and was what even their generals sometimes used; as Scipio, Metellus, Trajan, Adrian, and others: vinegar was also used by the Jews for drink, as appears from Ruth 2:14 and "dip thy morsel in the vinegar", which Boaz's reapers had with them in the field; "because of heat", as the commentators say (o); that being good to cool, and to extinguish thirst; for which reason the soldiers here offer it to Christ; though the Chaldee paraphrase of the above place makes it to be a kind of sauce or pap boiled in vinegar; and such an "Embamma" made of vinegar the Romans had, in which they dipped their food (p); but this here seems to be pure vinegar, and to be different from that which the other evangelists speak of, which was mingled with gall, or was sour wine with myrrh, Matthew 27:34. Vinegar indeed is good to revive the spirits, and hyssop, which is after mentioned, is an herb of a sweet smell; and if the reed, which the other evangelists make mention of, was the sweet calamus, as some have thought, they were all of them things of a refreshing nature: vinegar was also used for stopping blood (q), when it flowed from wounds in a large quantity; and of the same use were sponges; hence Tertullian (r) mentions "spongias retiariorum", the sponges of the fencers, which they had with them to stop any effusion of blood that should be made in their exercises; but then it can hardly be thought that these things should be in common prepared at crucifixions for such ends, on purpose to linger out a miserable life a little longer, which would be shocking barbarity; and especially such a provision would never be, made at this time, on such an account, since the Jews sabbath drew nigh, and they were in haste to have the executions over before that came on, that the bodies might not remain on the cross on that day; for which reason they would do nothing, at this time, however, to prolong the lives of the malefactors; wherefore it is most reasonable, that this vessel of vinegar was not set for any such purpose, but was for the use of the soldiers; and therefore this being at hand when Christ signified his thirst, they offered some of it in the following manner:

and they filled a sponge with vinegar; it being the nature of a sponge (which Nonnus here calls , "a branch of the sea", because it grows there) to swallow up anything that is liquid, and which may be again squeezed and sucked out of it; hence the Jews say (s) of it, , "the sponge which swallows up liquids"; and used it for such a purpose; "and put it upon hyssop"; meaning not the juice of hyssop, into which some have thought the sponge with vinegar was put, but the herb, and a stalk of it: the other evangelists say, it was put "upon a reed"; meaning either that the sponge with the hyssop were put about a reed, and so given him; or rather it was a stalk of hyssop, which was like a reed or cane; and in this country of Judea grew very large, sufficient for such a purpose. The hyssop with the Jews was not reckoned among herbs, but trees; see 1 Kings 4:33 and they speak (t) of hyssop which they gather "for wood"; the stalks of which therefore must be of some size; yea, they call (u) a stalk which has a top to it, "a reed", or cane; which observation seems to reconcile the other evangelists with this: and they distinguish their hyssop which was right for use from that which had an epithet joined to it; as, Roman hyssop, Grecian hyssop, wild and bastard hyssop (w): and some writers (x) observe even of our common hyssop, that it has sometimes stalks of nine inches long, or longer, and hard and woody, nay, even a foot and a half; with one of which a man with his arms stretched out might possibly reach the mouth of a person on a cross: how high crosses usually were is not certain, nor was there any fixed measure for them; sometimes they were higher, and sometimes lower; the cross or gallows made by Haman for Mordecai was very high indeed, and the mouth of a person could not have been reached with an hyssop stalk; but such an one might, as was erected for Saul's sons, whose bodies on it could be reached by the beasts of the field, 2 Samuel 21:10 and so low was the cross on which Blandina the martyr suffered, as the church at Lyons relates (y), when on the cross she was exposed to beasts of prey, and became food for them: so that there is no need to suppose any fault in the text, and that instead of "hyssop" it should be read "hyssos"; which was a kind of javelin the Romans call "Pilum", about five or six foot long, which, it is supposed, one of the soldiers might have, and on it put the hyssop with the sponge and vinegar; but this conjecture is not supported by any copy, or ancient version; the Syriac version, which is a very ancient one, reads "hyssop". The Arabic and Persic versions render it, "a reed", as in the other evangelists; and the Ethiopic version has both, "they filled a sponge with vinegar, and it was set round with hyssop, and they bound it upon a reed"; and so some have thought that a bunch of hyssop was stuck round about the sponge of vinegar, which was fastened to the top of a reed; and the words will bear to be rendered; "setting it about with hyssop": this they might have out of the gardens, which were near this place, or it might grow upon the mountain itself; for we are told (z), it grew in great plenty upon the mountains about Jerusalem, and that its branches were almost a cubit long. Josephus (a) makes mention of a village beyond Jordan called Bethezob, which, as he says, signifies the house of hyssop; perhaps so called from the large quantity of hyssop that grew near it:

and put it to his mouth; whether Christ drank of it or no is not certain; it seems by what follows as if he did; at least he took it, being offered to him: the Jews themselves say (b), that Jesus said, give me a little water to drink, and they gave him , "sharp vinegar"; which so far confirms the evangelic history.

(m) Julian. Imperator. Epist. 27. p. 161. Vid. Lydium de re militari, l. 6. c. 7. p. 245. (n) Salmuth. in Panciroll. rerum memorab. par. 1. Tit. 53. p. 274. (o) Jarchi & Aben Ezra in loc. (p) Salmuth. ib. par. 2. Tit. 2. p. 83. (q) Plin. Nat. Hist. l. 31. c. 11. (r) De Spectaculis, c. 25. (s) Maimon. in Misn. Sabbat, c. 21. sect. 3. Misn. Celim, c. 9. sect. 4. (t) Misn. Parah, c. 11. sect. 8. Maimon. Hilch. Parah Adumah, c. 11. sect. 7. (u) Gloss. in T. Bab. Succa, fol. 13. 1.((w) Misn. Parah, c. 11. sect. 7. Negaim, c. 14. 6. T. Bab. Succa, fol. 13. 1. & Cholin, fol. 62. 2.((x) Dodonaeus, l. 4. c. 19. (y) Apud Euseb. Eccl. Hist. l. 5. c. 1. p. 161. Vid. Lipsium de Cruce, l. 3. c. 11. (z) Arabes Lexicograph. apud de Dieu in loc. (a) De Bello Jud. l. 6. c. 3. sect. 4. (b) Toklos Jesu, p. 17.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

29. filled a sponge with vinegar, and put it upon—a stalk of

hyssop, and put it to his mouth—Though a stalk of this plant does not exceed eighteen inches in length, it would suffice, as the feet of crucified persons were not raised high. "The rest said, Let be"—[that is, as would seem, 'Stop that officious service'] "let us see whether Elias will come to save Him" (Mt 27:49). This was the last cruelty He was to suffer, but it was one of the most unfeeling. "And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice" (Lu 23:46). This "loud voice," noticed by three of the Evangelists, does not imply, as some able interpreters contend, that our Lord's strength was so far from being exhausted that He needed not to die then, and surrendered up His life sooner than Nature required, merely because it was the appointed time. It was indeed the appointed time, but time that He should be "crucified through weakness" (1Co 13:4), and Nature was now reaching its utmost exhaustion. But just as even His own dying saints, particularly the martyrs of Jesus, have sometimes had such gleams of coming glory immediately before breathing their last, as to impart to them a strength to utter their feelings which has amazed the by-standers, so this mighty voice of the expiring Redeemer was nothing else but the exultant spirit of the Dying Victor, receiving the fruit of His travail just about to be embraced, and nerving the organs of utterance to an ecstatic expression of its sublime feelings (not so much in the immediately following words of tranquil surrender, in Luke, as in the final shout, recorded only by John): "Father, into Thy hands I COMMEND My spirit!" (Lu 23:46). Yes, the darkness is past, and the true light now shineth. His soul has emerged from its mysterious horrors; "My God" is heard no more, but in unclouded light He yields sublime into His Father's hands the infinitely precious spirit—using here also the words of those matchless Psalms (Ps 31:5) which were ever on His lips. "As the Father receives the spirit of Jesus, so Jesus receives those of the faithful" (Ac 7:59) [Bengel]. And now comes the expiring mighty shout.

John 19:29 Additional Commentaries
Context
The Death of Jesus
28After this, Jesus, knowing that all things had already been accomplished, to fulfill the Scripture, said, "I am thirsty." 29A jar full of sour wine was standing there; so they put a sponge full of the sour wine upon a branch of hyssop and brought it up to His mouth. 30Therefore when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, "It is finished!" And He bowed His head and gave up His spirit.
Cross References
Matthew 27:48
Immediately one of them ran and got a sponge. He filled it with wine vinegar, put it on a staff, and offered it to Jesus to drink.

Matthew 27:50
And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit.

Mark 15:36
Someone ran, filled a sponge with wine vinegar, put it on a staff, and offered it to Jesus to drink. "Now leave him alone. Let's see if Elijah comes to take him down," he said.

Luke 23:36
The soldiers also came up and mocked him. They offered him wine vinegar
Treasury of Scripture

Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a sponge with vinegar, and put it on hyssop, and put it to his mouth.

was set.

Matthew 27:34,48 They gave him vinegar to drink mingled with gall: and when he had …

Mark 15:36 And one ran and filled a sponge full of vinegar, and put it on a …

Luke 23:36 And the soldiers also mocked him, coming to him, and offering him vinegar,

hyssop. This hyssop is termed a reed by Matthew and Mark; and it appears that a species of hyssop, with a reedy stalk, about two feet long, grew about Jerusalem.

Exodus 12:22 And you shall take a bunch of hyssop, and dip it in the blood that …

Numbers 19:18 And a clean person shall take hyssop, and dip it in the water, and …

1 Kings 4:33 And he spoke of trees, from the cedar tree that is in Lebanon even …

Psalm 51:7 Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall …

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