What’s the Significance of Simon Carrying Jesus’s Cross?
Transcript of the audio We wish you a happy Good Friday, as we like to call it.Even though it is the most somber day of the year in the church calendar, it is a cheerful day.Last week, we spoke about how to account for both the repulsion and the thrill of the cross.Pastor John, and especially the character of Simon of Cyrene, is the subject of today’s discussion.Pastor John is one of the minor stories that make up the crucifixion story.
It was brought to our attention by a podcast listener who wrote to us.″Greetings, Pastor John!When I was reading through the tale of the crucifixion this week, something that I had previously overlooked struck my eye.It is recorded in Luke 23:26 that during the course of the crucifixion processional, ‘they kidnapped one Simon of Cyrene, who was coming in from the country, and set on him the cross, to bear it behind Jesus.’ I understand that God is in complete control, and that this was not an accident or a coincidental element inserted into the plot.
The importance of Simon bearing Jesus’ cross is not fully understood.″Can you tell us what God wants us to see here?″
Famous Simon of Cyrene
This was a really nice question for me to think about because I’ve read it a hundred times and haven’t taken a moment to reflect on it, as so many of these questions urge me to do.And that is quite beneficial.When writers are describing facts, they may provide us with clear indications and cues as to why they are included those facts and what they want us to take away from the information they are providing.I don’t find any very obvious, definitive hints in this passage, or in any of the Gospels, as to why the Gospel writers included this truth in their accounts.It was Jesus’ prayer that the horrors of suffering and death would not prevent him from fulfilling his oath of loyalty and carrying out his redeeming mission.
One possible explanation is that Simon, the man who carried the cross, may have been a well-known figure in the early church, such that the simple mention of his name serves as still more piece of historical proof.Saying something like, ″This man right there that you know, he was the one who carried the cross.″ This may be the case because Simon is referred to as the father of Alexander and Rufus in Mark 15:21, which indicates that they are brothers.That’s a unique piece of information to possess.I mean, it would seem strange for Mark to include that information unless he assumed his readers were already familiar with Alexander and Rufus.
As a Gospel writer, Mark is frequently grouped with Peter, and Peter is often grouped with Rome, as evidenced by the presence of a character named Rufus in Romans 16.These kinds of inconsequential details lead people to conclude things like ″Okay, this is an allusion to a man who was well-known across the church.″ Given that he has become rather well-known, you are under no need to mention anything about him in this conversation.It’s the same of stating, ″He’s the one who carried the cross….″ Isn’t it incredible?He’ll be happy to speak with you and tell you about his experience.″
The fact that the crucifixion was associated with a person known as the father of Alexander and Rufus, however, suggests to me that Luke was thinking about something more than just the historical connection.Allow me to provide some recommendations.And that is essentially all there is to them.I’m happy to give them as suggestions rather than as declarations of certainty based on what I’ve observed so far.Maybe the people who are listening to me can see more than I can, and one of the recommendations will get closer to the sentiment, ″Oh, that was definitely meant by Luke.″ As a result, I’m assigning you some homework (kind of).
1. Served by a Foreigner
My initial hypothesis is based on the fact that Simon is characterized as coming from Cyrene.That is the name of a city in North Africa, which is now known as Libya.Because the name Simon was widespread among both Greeks and Jews, we are unable to determine whether he was Jewish or Gentile.We don’t know whether he was on a visit to Jerusalem or whether he actually resided there, but we do know that the Gospels call emphasis to the fact that this guy is of alien descent.He is of African descent.
As Luke may comment, ″It should be emphasized that a foreigner — in this case, an African — served Jesus at his dying hour.″ That is the first of my suggestions.
2. Pick Up Your Cross
Second, Luke is the only one of the four Gospels that mentions Simon as the one who carried Jesus’ cross behind him.In all of the other Gospels that mention this, it is simply said that he carried it.Luke 9:23, when he stated, ″If anybody would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me,″ would he want us to remember that?In other words, is Luke implying that this is a representation of what it means to be a disciple?
3. Sudden Suffering
In addition, if we believe that Luke was using this story as a parable of discipleship, as I have argued, may the fact that Simon was picked for the heavy work so quickly and unexpectedly be Luke’s method of teaching us that we do not always get to choose when we bear our crosses?″Simon was a genuine historical figure who happened to be there at a genuine historical time.″ We aren’t always in control of when we experience pain and sorrow.They come at us in unexpected ways, terrifying ways, weighty ways, painful ways, and apparently random ways, but they are always there.Instead, the fact that Simon was picked seemingly at random — after all, it only states he was coming in from the field, not that he was coming in from the country — that tiny extra comment appears to indicate, ″This is random — you think,″ or something along those lines.This might serve as a reminder to us that every minute of our existence, whether we are traveling to or from the country, we should be prepared to be taken away and thrown into the service of Jesus in a painful way.
We just don’t know when it will happen.
4. Kept Alive for the Cross
Fourth, I believe the majority of people would conclude that Jesus’ insistence on having someone else bear his cross indicates that he had reached his breaking point and was unable to complete the journey on his own.However, what we may not consider as quickly is whether this act of enlisting Simon’s assistance was motivated by compassion, malice, or a mere need for speed.Here’s what I’m talking about.If he couldn’t carry his cross himself, someone else had to, because these troops are under orders to ″Crucify him.″ In addition, if it is revealed that they let him to die on the way, someone is going to be furious.Perhaps it was a matter of plain expediency: ″We have to bring this man up there so that he can be crucified.″ Perhaps one of the Roman troops was moved to tears by something he had seen or experienced.
For another possibility — and this is something I had not considered — Matthew Henry suggests that they may have realized Jesus was about to die under the weight and were so bloodthirsty or afraid of punishment from Pilate that they wanted to make sure he survived the remainder of the torturous ordeal.For want of a better expression, this is the polar opposite of compassion: ″We have to get nails in his hands and nails through his feet.″ ″We can’t allow this man die of weariness under his cross here in the middle of nowhere.″
5. Heavenly Help
Fifth, and this is my final idea, only Luke informs us that Jesus is in anguish in the garden of Gethsemane and that he was assisted by an angel while he prayed.In Luke 22:43, an angel appeared to him and assisted him, supported him, and provided him with strength.Jesus cried out with loud screams and tears to the one who had the power to save him from death in Hebrews 5:7; he was heard because of his reverence for the one who could save him from death, according to the verse.″The call to suffer for Jesus is frequently unexpected, expensive, and appears to come out of nowhere.″ Because of his reverence and holy dread, he was able to be heard.So, how exactly does that work?
He prayed to God, pleading with him to spare him death, and his prayer was heard.Well, he passed away.It was my contention in an essay published on the website Desiring God that Jesus was spared from death in response to his plea, not in the sense that he didn’t die, but in the sense that he was saved from the faith-destroying forces of death.As a result, the prospect of death loomed before him.
And he was a living, breathing human being.Death was so terrifying that it may have dissuaded him from performing his duty.And he begged with his Father, saying, ″Please don’t let death ruin me in such a manner.″ And an angel appeared to him and assisted him.His prayer was not so much for his survival as it was for the horrors of pain and death not to discourage him from his obedience and the rescuing mission he had been enlisted to carry out.
If so, could it possibly be that Simon’s stepping forward to assist Jesus in making it to the cross — and specifically to assist Jesus at that moment — was analogous to an angel appearing at the perfect moment when a humanly weak Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane — and now on the road leading to Calvary — required assistance to complete his mission.
What We Know
Whether or whether these five recommendations are part of Luke’s original aim as he writes, we do know the following:
- Simon was a genuine historical figure who happened to be there at a genuine historical event.
- He was a foreigner, an African, who was called upon to help Jesus in his hour of need.
- The act of following Jesus with the cross in our hands is a beautiful and terrible representation of our calling as disciples, according to Luke 9. This is true, whether Luke intended for us to see it or not
- the call to suffer for Jesus is often sudden, costly, and seemingly random
- Simon’s assistance proved to be both a temporary relief and an additional source of suffering because it enabled Jesus to endure the horrible experience of crucifixion for our sake.
- We know that when Jesus cried out to his heavenly Father in Gethsemane, he was given assistance. He need assistance in order to maintain his composure under pressure. His prayers were heard and answered by God. These were the most difficult moments in Jesus’ life
Oh, what feelings of love and gratitude should rise in our hearts as we reflect on all of these things.
Who Was Simon of Cyrene and What Does the Bible Say about him?
Everything that is written in the Bible is accurate.The Bible does not mince words, from the veracity of all reported statements and occurrences to the veracity of Jesus as the Way, the Truth, and the Life (John 14:6).It is a book that does not mince words.The words of Scripture were inspired by the Holy Spirit to reflect God’s intentions, and everything included within them has significance.As a result, when we read brief biographies of persons, we may be assured that they are in the Word for a reason.
After taking this into consideration, we should consider the question, ″Who was Simon of Cyrene, and why is he referenced in the Bible?″ In accordance with the Scriptures, Simon was from Cyrene (Matthew, Mark, and Luke all refer to him as ″of″ Cyrene), a city that had a population of around 5,000 people at the time of Jesus’ death.Cyrene was established as a trading center by the Greeks about the seventh century B.C., and it was located in the area of Cyrenaica, a coastal town on the Mediterranean Sea.As the Greeks extended their empire, they looked to mythology for inspiration when naming new towns.Cyrene was called after Kyrene, who was the daughter of a Thessalian monarch (Hypseus) and a water nymph who lived in the ancient world.
Cyrene was home to a significant number of Jewish settlers, and it is included among the countries represented in Jerusalem on the Feast of the Transfiguration (Acts 2:10).People from Cyrene were able to hear Peter preach as though he were speaking in their own tongue.Many believe Simon was a dark-skinned guy because Cyrene was located at the northern edge of Africa, in modern-day Libya.However, we cannot be certain because the Bible does not say anything about Simon’s ethnic background.
Despite the possibility that Simon was of African heritage, he may have have been a transplanted Jew or of some other descent.Scripture does not state anything, and we must refrain from asserting something that the author of the Scriptures did not intend.There are just three places in the Bible where Simon of Cyrene is specifically referenced by name (Matthew 27:32, Mark 15:21, and Luke 23:26).″They discovered a guy of Cyrene, whose name was Simon,″ according to Matthew.
″They compelled this man to bear the cross,″ says the author.A bystander, Simon of Cyrene (the father of Alexander and Rufus), who was coming in from the country was obliged to carry Jesus’ cross, according to Mark’s Gospel.″And as they brought Him away, they caught one Simon of Cyrene, who was coming in from the country, and set the cross on him, so that he would carry it after Jesus,″ according to the Gospel of Luke.
Why Is it Important That Simon of Cyrene Carried the Cross?
- A common occurrence in Scripture is the author’s explanation or revelation of why specific events and persons are referenced, whether it is to provide lessons for Christians today or to provide more substantiation to a narrative.
- In the instance of Simon of Cyrene, the latter appears to be the case.
- He looks to be a side plot to add excitement to the tale, but because the Lord does not spend any time in speaking, his inclusion by the Gospel authors must have some significance.
There are just a handful of persons named in the whole Bible.The fact that Simon is mentioned lends credibility to the story.God is always intentional, and it’s possible that He ordered the soldiers to select Simon of Cyrene to bear the Lord’s cross for a part of His agony on the road to Golgotha, as they did.
Never lose sight of the truth that Immanuel (God with Us), the Creator (Colossians 1:16), and the One Who bears our burdens (Psalm 55:22), accepted assistance from a human being in order to save us.What a valuable lesson in humility….Furthermore, we are aware that a portion of the execution procedure included humiliating, public humiliation.
- Simon did more than just watch; he actively participated in the Lord’s progress toward crucifixion and death.
- The Lord is being taunted while He bears the weight of His cross, as we may imagine if we visualize what is happening on the road along the journey.
- Perhaps the crowd pressed together to catch a glimpse of the Christ, to whom they had just exclaimed ″Hosanna!
Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord″ (Mark 11:9), as He passed by.″He was despised and rejected by others,″ writes the prophet Isaiah.″He was despised, and we did not hold Him in high regard″ (Isaiah 53:3).Among the scoffers were disciples such as John the Baptist, Jesus’ mother, and Mary Magdalene, who were all there (John 19:25-26).
Simon ″was forced″ to bear the cross, according to Matthew and Mark, although Luke claims Simon ″was taken″ and had the crucifixion placed on his shoulders.Simon is summoned to duty in each of the stories narrated.It is not stated in the verses that he volunteered.
It has been suggested that we would like not to bear our ″crosses″ as well, as a way of spiritualizing Simon’s actions.Regardless of who the Father selected to carry the burden for Jesus, the fact that the soldiers pushed a man into duty as a cross-bearer says much about Jesus’ deformity and exceedingly weakened status at the time.Was it a sense of sympathy that drove them to do it?It’s possible we’ll never know.
The soldiers were given orders to bring Jesus to Golgotha, where he would be crucified and killed.According to Isaiah 53:10 and Phil.2:8, the Father had assigned His Son to ″death on the cross,″ yet the Roman soldiers were unlikely to have been aware of the prophesies regarding Jesus’ crucifixion and death at the time.Perhaps, as they walked alongside Him, He appeared to be on the verge of passing out in His battered condition.
Because of this, the troops would have denied the crowd its ″spectator sport,″ which consisted of catcalls and a deathwatch while the crucifixion victims perished on their crosses.Commanding officers expected the troops to carry out their instructions in their entirety and not to let one of the men destined for crucifixion to die before their tasks were done.While in anguish in the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus cried out to the Father, saying, ″My Father, if it is possible, please take this cup away from Me; nonetheless, not according to my will, but according to Yours″ (Matthew 26:37-39).Simon’s service to Jesus may indicate the Father’s deed of love toward His Son in order to momentarily alleviate Jesus’ suffering.It is always the case that God’s wishes are carried out in the course of events.
What a gracious gift from God to include Simon in His Son’s final earthly trip (in His first advent).According to Luke’s Gospel, Simon was the one who bore the cross ″behind Jesus.″ Simon’s transportation of the cross is also spiritualized in connection to how we as Christians need to ″carry our own crosses″ as we follow Jesus (Luke 14:27).This is shown implicitly by Simon of Cyrene, who gives us an example of what it looks like.
- It is not simple to follow Jesus’ teachings.
- The world system seeks to persuade us with its diversions and enticements, just as Simon, who was carrying the Lord’s load, was most certainly subjected to insults and offers.
- The Via Dolorosa is a pilgrimage route that is popular among believers who want to memorialize the different events that took place on the road to Golgotha, including the location where it is believed Simon of Cyrene was obliged to bear the cross.
- A good time to pray and ponder on the Lord’s arduous journey toward the Skull might be had while taking a walk.
What Happened to Simon of Cyrene after the Resurrection?
- Following the Resurrection, there is no direct reference of Simon of Cyrene in the Scriptures.
- According to tradition, Simon traveled to Egypt and preached the Gospel.
- Following that, according to the apocryphal Acts of Simon and Judas, Simon was martyred in 100 A.D.
by being sawed in two with a sledgehammer.Cyrenians, on the other hand, are specifically addressed in Acts 6:9.These individuals are members of the group that argued with Stephen because he performed ″great marvels and signs among the people″ (Acts 6:8).
Because there is no clear mention of Simon in the Bible, we cannot conclude that he was there at the same meeting.According to Mark’s Gospel, Simon had two sons (Rufus and Alexander).Although this is true, it does not imply that Simon’s sons were present, nor does it imply that the Rufus referenced in Romans 16:13 or the Alexander listed in 1 Timothy 1:20 or 2 Timothy 4:14 are the sons of Simon.
- Nonetheless, Mark makes reference to them for a cause that we are not aware of and may never be aware of.
- Simon was in attendance.
- He was the one who carried the cross of Christ.
It is God’s will that all of the facts revealed in the Bible be written down (2Timothy 3:16-17).May we all, in recognition of what Jesus has done for us, continue to carry our own crosses on a daily basis.Photograph courtesy of Unsplash/Gift Habeshaw Lisa Loraine Baker is the award-winning author of Someplace to Be Somebody, which was nominated for an Edgar Award (End Game Press, February 2022).Writing fiction and nonfiction, Lisa is now working on a Christian living book with her husband, as well as a thriller novel with her sister-in-law.
Lisa is a member of Word Weavers, Int’l (where she serves as a critique partner and mentor), AWSA, ACFW, Serious Writer Group, and the British Romance Writers’ Association.Lisa and her husband, Stephen, live in their house as the ″Newlyweds of Minerva,″ where they share it with their wild cat, Lewis.Lisa and Stephen have two children.
This page is part of our People from the Bible Series, which features some of the most well-known historical characters and individuals from the Bible’s historical records.We’ve put together this collection of articles to assist you in your study of individuals whom God decided to lay before us as examples in His Word.Your faith and soul will be strengthened as a result of their lives and paths with God.The Life and Times of Elijah from the Bible Ruth’s Life – 5 Essential Faith Lessons to Take Away Queen Esther’s Biblical Story is a must-read.
King Nebuchadnezzar is regarded as the world’s greatest villain.Mary Magdalene’s Biography in the Bible
Did Jesus or Simon of Cyrene carry the cross?
Is it more likely that Jesus or Simon of Cyrene carried the cross? Matthew 27:31-32; Mark 15:20-21; Luke 23:26; and John 19:17 are some of the passages to consider. The truth is that both of them did.
- Simon of Cyrene
- ″And after they had ridiculed Him, they stripped Him of His robe and placed His clothes on Him, and they brought Him away to be crucified,″ Matthew 27:31-32 says. 32 And as they were leaving, they came across a man from Cyrene called Simon, whom they pushed into service to carry His cross.″ ″And after they had humiliated Him, they stripped off His purple robes and placed His garments on Him,″ Mark 15:20-21 says. And they took Him out to the cross with them. Simon of Cyrene (father of Alexander and Rufus), a passerby who had just arrived from the countryside, was pushed into action to bore His cross.″ The Bible says in Luke 23:26, ″And as they were leading Him away, they took hold of one Simon of Cyrene, who had come in from the country, and set the cross on his shoulders to bear behind Jesus.″
″They took Jesus as a result, and He walked forth bearing His own cross to the spot known as the Place of a Skull, which is known in Hebrew as Golgotha,″ says John 19:17.
- The cross was borne by both of them. The Bible does not indicate that Jesus carried the cross by himself in John 19:17. He is said to have carried his own cross. He carried the cross till he was unable to carry it any farther without Simon’s assistance. A contradiction occurs when one assertion renders another statement impossible, despite the fact that both statements are intended to be true at the same time. There is no inconsistency here. A few hours before, Jesus had endured a physically terrible ordeal. Please meditate on the following passages, which have been ordered according to the sequence of His agony, and pay particular attention to the physical trauma He endured before He even arrived to the cross. When you sweat, it looks like blood: His prayer became as if it were droplets of blood, and his sweat became like drops of blood, falling to the ground.″ He was struck: Luke 22:44, ″And being in anguish, He was praying very passionately
- and His perspiration became as if it were drops of blood, dropping to the ground.″ The Gospel of John 18:22-23, ″And after He had finished speaking, one of the officers standing by struck Jesus in the face, asking, ″Is that the way you respond to the high priest?″″ 23 ″If I have spoken incorrectly, give testimony to the error
- but if I have spoken correctly, why do you hit Me?″ Jesus said.
- He was smacked in the face with fists: As recorded in Mark 14:65, ″And some of them started to spit upon Him, and to blindfold Him, beating Him with their fists, and calling out to Him, ″Prophesy!″ They responded to His arrival by slapping him across the face.″
- He was scourged as follows: He then freed Barabbas in exchange for them, but after scourging Jesus and handing Him over to be killed, he gave Him to be crucified.
- Putting a crown of thorns on your head and beating yourself: 29-31 in Matthew 27:29-31, ″And after weaving a crown of thorns for His head, they placed a reed in His right hand
- and they prostrated themselves before Him and insulted Him, saying, ″Hail, King of the Jews! 30 ″ And they spit on Him, and then they grabbed the reed and started to beat Him on the back of the head. 31 Following their mockery of Him, they stripped Him of His robe and placed His clothes on Him before leading Him away to be crucified.″
The accused would be responsible for transporting the cross beam to the site of the crucifixion. Even though Jesus attempted to carry it, the physical strain of the experience proved too much for him given the bodily damage he had just endured. He fell to the ground. As a result, the Romans appointed Simon of Cyrene as a substitute for Jesus on his last journey across Europe.
Simon of Cyrene: The Man Who Carried Jesus’ Cross
- Recently, I was roaming about the Santa Barbara Mission — the historical Spanish edifice constructed in the 18th century by Franciscan missionaries and Native Americans — when I had a flashback to a time when I was in high school.
- Several miniature oil paintings depicting the Stations of the Cross, which are a step-by-step ancient recounting of the crucifixion narrative, may be seen in the old church there.
- All fourteen stations, which are arranged in a semi-circle around the exterior of the sanctuary, are painted to portray the story of the ″Passion.″ As with most of my visits to historic Catholic structures, the sensory religious experiences of my childhood came flooding back to me: countless masses, liturgies, and plays throughout the many Lenten seasons all filled my mind in the first station, the second station, and so on…
I was transported back to my childhood.until my attention was diverted to the fifth station, which was the one that had always captured my imagination as a child: ″Simon assists Jesus in carrying the cross.″ This notion that a spectator named Simon would be summoned to assist Jesus in carrying the cross — and that he would do so — always seemed to me to be a source of fascination.Later, after adopting my Bible-reading Protestantism, I really went back and studied the parts of Scripture that were the inspiration for the fifth station.
Three of the four gospels recounted the account of Simon of Cyrene, and they specifically specify the man who assisted in the carrying of the cross: Simon of Cyrene.As they walked out the door, they came upon a Cyrenean guy named Simon.They obliged this man to bear his cross on his shoulders.
- — Matthew 27:32 (NASB) Also, they forced a bystander, Simon of Cyrene, who was coming in from the country and who happened to be the father of Alexander and Rufus, to bear his cross for him.
- — Matthew 15:21 And while they were leading him away, they apprehended a man named Simon of Cyrene, who had just arrived from the countryside, and set the cross on his shoulders so that he could carry it after Jesus.
- — Luke 23:26 (New International Version) We learn something new about Simon of Cyrene from each of the Scriptures, and we learn something even more essential about our own lives with Jesus as a result of each of these accounts.
First and foremost, it should not be forgotten that Simon was the one who carried Jesus’ cross.The thing Simon was carrying is explicitly stated in Matthew and Mark: ″hiscross.″ Despite the fact that this guy, Jesus, whom all of the gospel writers plainly understood to be God incarnate, requires aid at a time of pain, it is a profound statement.Isn’t it true that God is the one who suffers on our behalf?Why, therefore, does he require the support of what appears to be an arbitrary individual?
Simon, who carried Jesus’ cross, serves as a constant reminder of God’s humility.This is a characteristic that God does not require, and it is also not an attribute that anybody has ever demanded of him.As a result, we are more closely aligned with people who would yell for Jesus to come down from the crucifixion, or implore him to send a legion of angels to save himself, and mockingly position signs above him in an attempt to humiliate him into displaying a power we want him to demonstrate.
According to our reasoning, God’s almighty muscles should be flexed during his periods of misery and suffering.Despite this, he does not.Interestingly, this withholding is inherent in the character of Jesus, who, ″though he existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be grasped, but humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of being born in the likeness of men″ (Philippians 2:6–7; cf.1 Peter 2:6).
Surprisingly, Jesus let a man he made to assist him in carrying the cross.The bizarre, unsettling, wonderful, enigmatic, and scandalous thing about God is that he frequently chooses not to act like a god, despite the fact that he is.What type of God would enlist the assistance of his own creation?That Simon of Cyrene has been given a name is the second noteworthy aspect of his life.
Simon of Cyrene, who was coming in from the country and was the father of Alexander and Rufus, is introduced to us in the gospel of Mark, which provides us with the most detailed description of who he is (Mark 15:21).A major relevance of Mark mentioning anybody, much alone this guy who supported Jesus, is that it serves as a strong evidence of the story’s authority.At the time of the distribution of Mark’s gospel (about 65 AD), Simon of Cyrene — and, much more likely, his children, who are also mentioned — may have been located in order to confirm the events described in the gospel.Imagine hearing this and going to Simon or his children Rufus and Alexander to inquire, ″Did this really happen?″Did Jesus truly claim to be who he claimed to be?″ Mark is convinced that they will respond positively.
These are the eyewitnesses to the events (1 Corinthians 15:6, 1 John 1:2, 2 Peter 1:16).Many academics believe that the ″Rufus″ who is mentioned and commended by St.Paul in Romans 16:13 is Simon’s son, and that this is the case.
- However, it is also significant that Simon is mentioned here since, strangely enough, there aren’t that many names in the Bible.
- When reading the Bible, our attention should be drawn in almost immediately whenever a person’s name is mentioned together with a place and a brief genealogy.
- How many ″passerbyers″ are there in the New Testament who aren’t mentioned?
- How many hundreds of families, groups, and even people who have been healed of ailments have gone unnoticed for years and years?
- When the New Testament authors give someone a name, they are indicating their significance in the tale, and for one verse and one brief instant, it looks that Simon of Cyrene is honored in the sense that he is remembered by the authors of the Bible.
In the centuries afterward, billions upon billions of human people have lived and died, and we are all familiar with Simon for what he accomplished on Good Friday.Perhaps this demonstrates what God himself remembers: tiny acts of kindness performed in the service of people in need.Finally, it is crucial that Simon was the one who carried the cross ″behind Jesus,″ as Luke describes it in his version.Simon of Cyrene is regarded as the world’s first Christian, both metaphorically and maybe in a very literal sense.″If anybody would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me,″ Jesus urged to his potential disciples just before his arrest and betrayal (Luke 9:23).Christianity calls for the practice of ″cruciform living,″ which refers to living a way of life that is formed and directed by and through the cross.
We are the ones who shoulder the cross that Jesus has provided for us.As Simon demonstrated, and as we must demonstrate, this is exactly what we must do as well.This is what we do in order to come to know Jesus ″and the power of his resurrection, and to participate in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death,″ as St.Paul put it in his letter (Philippians 3:10).Simon of Cyrene, bearing the cross and following behind Jesus, exemplifies what it means to be a disciple.
Christ has been the first to die.He has left and is traveling to a location that we are unable to reach.Nonetheless, we follow in his footsteps, carrying the cross in our hands.This is why Christians today join in with the hymn, which is based on the words of the martyr Sadhu Sundar Singh: ″The cross stands before me, the world behind me.″ ″There is no turning back, there is no turning back…″
Contradictions In The Bible – Did Jesus or Simon Carry The Cross?
Did Jesus or Simon carry the cross?
- JOHN 19:17 says that Jesus bore his own cross to the place of death, implying that he was a humanist accusation.
- However, according to Mark 15:21-23, a man named Simon was the one who carried the cross.
- Do you have an answer for me?
I believe we may be able to find out what happened without resorting to the Bible for guidance.The cross is being carried by Jesus for the first time.He had been pummeled to a bloody pulp.
He is quite frail, and he constantly tripping over himself.A guy called Simon, who is standing in the crowd, ″volunteers″ to carry the cross the rest of the way to the cathedral.Does this answer make sense if we look at the specifics of the Bible?
- John 19:17-18 (KJV) After that, they brought Jesus out to the area known as the Place of the Skull, which is known in Hebrew as Golgotha, where He died on His own cross for the sins of the world.
- They crucified Him there, along with two other men, one on either side of Him, with Jesus sandwiched in the middle.
Mark 15:21-23 (KJV) After they had humiliated Him, they stripped Him of His purple robe and dressed Him in His own clothes.And they took Him out to the cross with them.They enlisted the help of a bystander who had just arrived from the countryside, Simon of Cyrene (the father of Alexander and Rufus), to carry His cross for them.According to the Gospel of John, Jesus ″went out″ bearing His own cross.
That indicates that He began the journey to Golgotha with His cross in hand.Simon of Cyrene was compelled to endure the crucifixion, according to Mark, because the Romans demanded it.What appears to have happened was that Jesus attempted to carry the crucifixion but was unable to do so, and Simon was dragged from the throng by the Romans and made to carry the cross for him instead.
Simon, on the other hand, is not mentioned by John.Why?Because it is not the story of who bore the cross or how Jesus arrived at Golgatha that is the focus of John’s narrative.The crucifixion is the primary focus of John’s attention.
He only states that Jesus began by bearing His own cross, which is correct in this instance.As Luke relates it further: ″When they were leading Him away, they kidnapped a man, Simon of Cyrene, who had just arrived from the country, and they placed the cross on his shoulders to be carried behind Jesus.″ – Luke 23:26 (NIV) It is unmistakable.Simon of Cyrene was in Jerusalem on a business trip.The fact that he was from Cyrene implies that he came from a region near Alexandria, Egypt.
He was a complete stranger in town, and he was a part of the mob outside Pilate’s palace when the incident occurred.According to John’s account, Jesus set out carrying His cross, but it soon became evident that this was not the case.He couldn’t carry it any longer since he was too exhausted.Simon, a complete stranger who had wandered into the gathering, was dragged out of the mob and forced to serve.What exactly did we learn here?
There is no inconsistency here.The following question.In regards to the crucifixion, Matthew 27:44 informs us that Jesus was taunted by both criminals who were crucified alongside him at the same time.
- Nevertheless, according to Luke 23:39-43, just one of the criminals ridiculed Jesus, and the other criminal scolded the criminal who was performing the mocking, and Jesus informed the criminal who was defending him, ″Today thou shalt thou be with me in paradise.″ This one is also simple.
- However, here is the solution nonetheless.
THE GOOD NEWS
- You must first be aware of the terrible news in order to receive the good news.
- It everything comes down to you.
- Everyone has sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, according to the Word of God.
– Romans 3:23 (NASB) Sin is defined as defying God, which is the same as breaching God’s rule.God is flawless, and in order to reach paradise, one must be perfect as well.We will never be able to meet such a high quality.
We all fall short of the mark.Consider, for example, comparing yourself to only one of the Ten Commandments of Moses.Have you ever lied to someone?
- Those who lie will have their part in the lake of fire and brimstone, which is the second death, which will befall them all.
- – The Book of Revelation, verse 8.
- Or how about this: Have you ever taken something that did not belong to you, no matter how insignificant the item was?
Have you ever felt a tinge of desire when you glanced at someone else?Everyone who looks at a woman with lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart, according to the teachings of Jesus in Matthew 5.Have you completed this task?You have violated the laws of God.
You have committed a sin.Justice must be served, and that implies an eternity in hell, the lake of fire, or the second death, among other things.Unless.
Unless there was someone who was ready to pay the penalty on your behalf, you would be in trouble.Someone who will accept full responsibility for the actions you have taken.There is, in fact, something there.There is only one individual who is capable of and willing to do so.
That individual is none other than Jesus Christ.If you accept that this is true (believe) and repent (turn away from offending God), Jesus’ death is applied to your account and you are released from the punishment of sin, allowing you to spend eternity with God in His presence.
Who helped Jesus carry the cross?
- Answer When Jesus was finally compelled to carry His cross to the spot where He would be executed by the Romans after being cruelly tortured, He was frightened.
- In the beginning, Jesus carried His own cross (John 19:17).
- The fact that Jesus was no longer capable of carrying His cross was most likely owing to the tremendous agony He had previously experienced at the hands of the authorities.
A man was obliged to assist Jesus in carrying the cross as a result of this decision by the Roman troops.Simon, a Cyrenean, is the man who assisted Jesus in carrying the cross, according to the gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke (Matthew 27:32; Mark 15:21; Luke 23:26).Cyrene was an ancient city in Libya, Africa, that was destroyed by the Romans.
Because of its geographic location, many traditional portrayals of Simon depict him as an African black guy.It is probable that Simon was a black man, but we cannot be certain because the Bible does not mention this.Founded by the Greeks in the 5th century BC, Cyrene was an important cultural center for Greek philosophy and medicine.
- There was also a substantial Jewish community in the city, as well as Jewish proselytes (see Acts 2:10).
- Adding to this, Mark and Luke state that Simon ″was on his way in from the country,″ and Mark goes on to state that Simon ″was the father of Alexander and Rufus.″ Because of this, Alexander and Rufus must have been well-known to Mark’s audience.
- The name Simon of Cyrene appears just three times in the Synoptic Gospels, and it is the only time he is named in the Bible.
A popular belief based on certain church tradition is that Simon of Cyrene became a Christian later in life — although some theories hold that he was already a follower of Christ prior to the crucifixion — and rose to prominence as a leader in the early church.A tradition holds that the Rufus named in Mark 15:21 is the same Rufus referenced in Romans 16:13, which is supported by biblical evidence.Assuming that this is the case, it lends support to the notion that Simon and his family were important members of the early church.However, once again, there is no specific connection between the two Rufuses in the Scriptures to be found.
Simon of Cyrene was the man who accompanied Jesus on his journey to Calvary.This results in him being ″immortalized″ inside the pages of Scripture.Hopefully, after witnessing up close and personal the agony Jesus underwent on our behalf, Simon of Cyrene came to accept Jesus as his Savior as well as his Lord and Savior.
Simon may have carried the cross for a portion of the journey to Golgotha, but Jesus bore Simon’s guilt on the hang (1 John 2:2).
Simon of Cyrene – Wikipedia
|SaintSimon of Cyrene|
|The fifth Station of the Cross, showing Simon of Cyrene helping Jesus carry his cross. St. Raphael’s Cathedral, Dubuque, Iowa.|
|Bishop, and Martyr|
|Venerated in||Roman Catholic Church, Eastern Orthodox Church, Oriental Orthodox Church, and the Church of the East|
|Attributes||Carrying Jesus’ Cross before His Crucifixion|
- The man compelled by the Romans to carry the cross of Jesus of Nazareth as Jesus was taken to his crucifixion, according to all three Synoptic Gospels: Simon of Cyrene (Hebrew:, Standard Hebrew imon, Tiberian Hebrew imôn; Greek: o, Simn Kyrnaios; died 100) was the man compelled by the Romans to carry the cross of Jesus of Nazareth And when they came out, they discovered a man from Cyrene, whose name was Simon, whom they made to wear the cross.
- He was also the father of the disciples Rufus and Alexander, whom he raised as his own.
- Cyrene was a city in northern Africa, on the border with eastern Libya.
- Ptolemy Soter compelled 100,000 Judean Jews to live in this city during his reign (323–285 BC), and it became an early center of Christianity.
- It was a Greek city in the province of Cyrenaica that had a Jewish colony where 100,000 Judean Jews were forced to dwell during his reign (323–285 BC).
In Jerusalem, the Cyrenian Jews established a synagogue, where many of them gathered for yearly feasts.
- Carrying the cross, or patibulum (crossbeam in Latin), for Jesus is the fifth or seventh Station of the Cross, depending on whose version you read it.
- Some have interpreted the verse as meaning that Simon was picked because he may have expressed sympathy for Jesus’ cause.
- Others argue that the text itself says nothing, that he had no option, and that there is no foundation for considering the carrying of the cross to be an act of empathetic charity on the part of the victim.
The biblical author Mark 15:21 refers to Simon as ″the father of Alexander and Rufus.″ Because their names are included in the tradition, it is possible that they were well-known in the Early Christian community in Rome before going on to become missionaries.The Rufus (in Greek: v or Rhouphon) referenced by Paul in Romans 16:13 may possibly be the son of Simon of Cyrene, according to certain interpretations of the passage.Some believe that Simon himself was one of the ″men of Cyrene″ who proclaimed the Gospel to the Greeks in Acts 11:20, and that this is a connection that should be made.
Simon’s surname, on the other hand, does not rule out the possibility that he was Jewish, and Alexander and Rufus were also popular names that may have referred to others.A burial cave in the Kidron Valley unearthed in 1941 by E.L.
- Sukenik, which belonged to Cyrenian Jews and was believed to have been built before AD 70, was revealed to contain an ossuary with the Greek inscription ″Alexander son of Simon″ written twice on it.
- The fact that this is the same individual, however, cannot be determined with certainty.
His consecration as the first bishop of the modern Archdiocese of Avignon, according to one Catholic tradition, took place in 1204. Another theory states that he was crucified and martyred in the year 100. As far as the Catholic Church is concerned, Simon of Cyrene is not commemorated in the Old or Revised Roman Martyrology.
- According to certain Gnostic beliefs, Simon of Cyrene was subjected to the circumstances leading up to the crucifixion as a result of a mistaken identification.
- This is the tale told in the Second Treatise of the Great Seth, albeit it is unknown if Simon or someone else died on the cross in actuality.
- According to certain Gnostics, Jesus was not made of flesh, but rather just assumed the appearance of flesh in order to save the world (see also Basilides, and Swoon hypothesis).
Irenaeus claims that Basilides, in his gospel of Basilides, preached a docetic concept of Christ’s agony, which is supported by the evidence.Specifically, he asserts the idea that Christ in Jesus, as a totally divine entity, was incapable of experiencing bodily suffering and did not die on the cross, but that the person crucified was in reality Simon of Cyrene.Irenaeus recounts Basiledes, who says, ″He appeared on earth in the shape of a man and worked marvels.″ As a result, he did not suffer personally.
A certain Simon of Cyrene, on the other hand, was obliged to bear the cross for him.It was he who was mistakenly and erroneously crucified, having been transfigured by him in order for him to be mistaken for Jesus in the first place.Furthermore, Jesus took on the persona of Simon and laughed at them as they passed by.
- Irenaeus, Against Heresies (Against Heresies)
In popular culture
- The visions of Anne Catherine Emmerich revealed that Simon was a satanic priestess.
- He was chosen by the Romans to assist Jesus in carrying the cross because they identified him as not being a Jew based on his clothing.
- Simon the Cyrenian is a drama written by poet Ridgely Torrence that is based on his life.
This drama was staged by the YWCA in 1920, under the direction of Dora Cole, the sister of composer Bob Cole, and starring Paul Robeson.The role of Simon of Cyrene was played by Sidney Poitier in the 1965 film The Greatest Story Ever Told, directed by George Stevens and starring Sidney Poitier.The contemporaneous King of Kings, on the other hand, depicts a black soldier there at the moment of Jesus’ flagellation, according to tradition.
A vignette from Monty Python’s Life of Brian (1979), a comedy film about the life of Brian, has a reference to the Simon of Cyrene story.This time, a guy who appears to be religious and generous offers to one of the condemned who is bearing a cross, ″Brother, allow me to bear your weight.″ After doing so, the doomed guy flees, leaving the generous man to deal with the cross and the prospect of crucifixion himself.Simon is portrayed as a Jew in the film The Passion of the Christ, who, after being forced to carry the cross by the Romans, is first resentful, but eventually grows to care for Jesus and assist him.
Among others who have taken their names from Simon of Cyrene are the Simon Community and the Cyrenian movement (which provides assistance to homeless and other underprivileged people in the United Kingdom).
- Chapel of Simon of Cyrene
- A b c T.A. Bryant, compiler
- Mark 15:21–22
- Matthew 27:32
- Luke 23:26
- Matthew 27:32: text from the King James Version
- Matthew 27:32: text from the King James Version
- The Bible as it appears in today’s edition. ″Matthew″, in The Expositor’s Bible Commentary, Frank E. Gaebelein, ed. Vol. 8, Grand Rapids: Regency (Zondervan), 1984. Page 575
- a b c d e f g h I j j j j j j j j j j j j j (Wm B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 2006). Gnostic Bible (Willis Barnstone and Marvin Meyer, eds.). New York: Columbia University Press, 1990. Frank Leslie Cross and Elizabeth A. Livingstone (1997) published ″Basilides″ in Shambhala (Boston) in 2002, pages 465–470. p. 168 of The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, published by Oxford University Press under the ISBN 019211655X
- Ehrman, Bart (2005). Kelhoffer, James A. (1998). Lost Christianities. Oxford University Press. p. 188. ISBN 0195182499
- Kelhoffer, James A. (1998). (2014). Pre-Christian Christians had different ideas about the ″Gospel″ and their legitimacy. The Mohr Siebeck Publishing Company, p. 80, ISBN 9783161526367 ″t gentibus ipsorum autem apparuisse eum in terra hominem, et virtutes perfecisse, t gentibus ipsorum autem apparuisse eum in terra hominem, t gentibus ipsorum autem apparuisse eum in terra hominem, t gentibus ipsorum autem apparuisse eum in When the time came, sed Simonem quendam Cyrenum angariatum portasse crucem ejus pro eo: and at the end of the second century, in the midst of ignorance and error on the cross, uti putaretur ipse esse Jesus: and at the end of the third century, in the midst of ignorance and error on the cross, transfiguratum ab eo, uti putaretur ipse esse Jesus″ On the first of May 2017, Boyle, Sheila Tully, and Andrew Bunie were able to recover Book 1, Chapter 19 from the XXXIII database (2001). The Years of Promise and Achievement in the Life of Paul Robeson p. 89. ISBN 1-55849-149-X.
- Goudsouzian, Aram. Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press. p. 89. ISBN 1-55849-149-X. (2004). Sidney Poitier was a man, an actor, and an icon. p. 232. ISBN 0-8078-2843-2.
- ″Cyrenians – About us″. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press. p. 232. ISBN 0-8078-2843-2. Retrieved on April 3, 2021.
- Media related to Simon of Cyrene at Wikimedia Commons