And the soldiers also mocked him, coming to him, and offering him vinegar,
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Offering him vinegar.—Not even the prayer for their forgiveness had touched the hearts of the soldiers. But still, they knew not what they did, and did but follow, after their nature, in the path in which others led the way. Possibly too, rude as their natures were, there was a touch of rough kindliness mingling in their mockery, as shown in the offer of the vinegar, or sour wine, which they had brought for their own use (see Note on Matthew 27:48)—unless, indeed, we suppose the refinement of cruelty which held it before the eyes of the Sufferer, but did not, as afterwards, convey it to His lips.Matthew 27:41-44.
(See on Joh 19:17-30).See Poole on "Luke 23:34" John 19:29. And the soldiers also mocked him, coming to him, and offering him vinegar,
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)Luke 23:36. οἱ στρατιῶται, the soldiers; first mention of them, whether there as executioners or as keeping order does not appear in Lk.’s narrative. They too mock in their own rough way, offering the sufferer vinegar by way of grim joke (Meyer). So Lk. understands the matter. Note how he hurries over these brutalities. Cf. Mt. and Mk.36. the soldiers also mocked him] A quaternion of soldiers (John 19:23) with a centurion. Similarly Tacitus says of the Christian martyrs who perished in the Neronian persecution, “pereuntibus addita ludibria” (Ann. xv. 44).
offering him vinegar] It was their duty to watch Him (Matthew 27:36), for sufferers sometimes lingered alive upon the cross for days. It is hardly to be wondered at if, with such a vile example before them as the derision by the Priests and Elders, these provincial or Roman soldiers —men of the lowest class, and “cruel by their wars, to blood inured”— beguiled the tedious hours by the mockery of the Innocent. By the word “mocked” seems to be meant that they lifted up to His lips the vessels containing their ordinary drink—sour wine (posca, John 19:29. Comp. Numbers 6:3; Ruth 2:14)—and then snatched them away. Probably a large earthen jar of posca for the use of these soldiers lay near the foot of the Cross (Psalm 69:21; John 19:29). All these insults took place during the earlier part of the Crucifixion, and before the awful darkness came on.Verse 36. - And the soldiers also mocked him, coming to him, and offering him vinegar. Three times in the Crucifixion scene we find a mention of this vinegar, or the sour wine of the country, the common drink of the soldiers and others, being offered to the Sufferer.
(1) Matthew 27:34. This was evidently a draught prepared with narcotics and stupefying drugs, no doubt by some of those compassionate women addressed by him on his way to the cross as "daughters of Jerusalem," a common work of mercy at that time, and one apparently permitted by the guards. This, St. Matthew tells us, "he tasted of," no doubt in courteous recognition of the kindly purpose of the act, but he refused to do more than taste of it. He would not dull the sense of pain, or cloud the clearness of his communion with his Father in that last awful hour.
(2) The second, mentioned here by St. Luke, seems to imply that the soldiers mocked his agony of thirst - one of the tortures induced by crucifixion - by lifting up to his parched, fevered lips, vessels containing their sour wine, and then snatching them hastily away.
(3) The third (John 19:28-30) relates that here the Lord, utterly exhausted, asked for and received this last refreshment, which revived, for a very brief space, his fast failing powers, and gave him strength for his last utterances. The soldiers, perhaps acting under the orders of the compassionate centurion in command, perhaps touched with awe by the brave patience and strange dignity of the dying Lord, did him this last kindly office.
Coming up close to the cross.
See on Matthew 27:34.
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