Who Carried The Cross?
Jesus or Simon carry the cross?
In describing Jesus being led to his execution, John 19:17 recounts that he carried
his own cross. But Mark 15:21-23 disagrees by saying a man called Simon carried
Do you have the answer? I think we can guess the
right answer without even looking at scripture.
Jesus starts to carry the
cross, but He has been severely beaten and is too weak. Then Simon is "volunteered"
and carries the cross the rest of the way. That's the answer.
Here is the
They took Jesus, therefore,
and He went out, bearing His own cross, to the place called the Place of a Skull,
which is called in Hebrew, Golgotha. There they crucified Him, and with Him two
other men, one on either side, and Jesus in between.
they had mocked Him, they took the purple robe off Him and put His own garments
on Him. And they led Him out to crucify Him. They pressed into service a passer-by
coming from the country, Simon of Cyrene (the father of Alexander and Rufus),
to bear His cross.
Jesus "went out" bearing His own cross...
he started the walk to Golgotha carrying His cross. John's point is not to describe
who carried the cross, or how Jesus got to Golgatha. The point is that He went
out to the Place of a Skull, and was crucified there. John's focus is on the crucifixion.
Simon of Cyrene was pressed into service to carry the cross is mentioned in all
the gospels except John... I wonder what the others have to say.
27:32 - As they were coming out, they found a man of Cyrene
named Simon, whom they pressed into service to bear His cross.
23:26 - When they led Him away, they seized a man, Simon
of Cyrene, coming in from the country, and placed on him the cross to carry behind
Here's the answer. Simon of Cyrene would not have been
in Pilate's courtyard. In fact, it appears Simon was traveling, having just come
in from the country (being from Cyrene means he was from an area near Alexandria,
Egypt). He was a stranger in town, and had probably got caught up in the crowd
outside Pilate's palace. As John reports, Jesus went out carrying His cross, but
almost immediately it was apparent He could not carry it. So Simon was pressed
What did we find out here? There is no contradiction.