The Dying Words of Jesus (Box 5.8)


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Click above to compare the dying words of Jesus in Matthew and Mark, Luke, and John.

Jesus speaks seven times from the cross, but not seven times in any one Gospel. The Gospels relate three very different stories regarding Jesus’s dying words. In one story, Jesus speaks only once; in a second, he speaks three times; and in a third, he speaks another three times. However, there are no parallels between what is said in any one of these three stories and what is said in the other two stories.


Story A

Story B

Story C

Matthew and Mark



“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Matt. 27:46; Mark 15:34).

“Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34).

“Woman, here is your son. . . . Here is your mother” (John 19:26–27).


“Truly, I tell you, today you will be with me in Paradise” (Luke 23:43).

“I am thirsty” (John 19:28).


“Father, into your hands, I commend my spirit” (Luke 23:46).

“It is finished” (John 19:30).