Robertson's Word Pictures of the New TestamentMatthew 27:57
- And when even was come (opsiav de genomenhv).
- It was the Preparation (paraskeuh), the day before the sabbath (Mark 15:42; Luke 23:54). Paraskeuh is the name in modern Greek today for Friday. The Jews were anxious that these bodies should be taken down before the sabbath began at 6 P.M. The request of Joseph of Arimathea for the body of Jesus was a relief to Pilate and to the Jews also. We know little about this member of the Sanhedrin save his name Joseph, his town Arimathea, that he was rich, a secret disciple, and had not agreed to the death of Jesus. Probably he now wished that he had made an open profession. But he has courage now when others are cowardly and asked for the personal privilege (hithsato, middle voice, asked for himself) of placing the body of Jesus in his new tomb. Some today identify this tomb with one of the rock tombs now visible under Gordon's Calvary. It was a mournful privilege and dignity that came to Joseph and Nicodemus (John 19:39-41) as they wrapped the body of Jesus in clean linen cloth and with proper spices placed it in this fresh (kainwi) tomb in which no body had yet been placed. It was cut in the rock (elatomhsen) for his own body, but now it was for Jesus. But now (verse 60) he rolled a great stone to the door of the tomb and departed. That was for safety. But two women had watched the sad and lonely ceremony, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary (mother of James and Joseph). They were sitting opposite and looking in silence.