The last week in the Gospel of John

If we consider the Gospel of John a sort of “Day Planner” for Jesus, we have nearly complete activity recorded for two weeks of the earthly ministry of Jesus. The first is in John 1:19—2:11 where activity for six of the seven days is recorded. I think the omitted day is the sabbath.

The next nearly complete week is the last week, leading up to the resurrection. John gives more attention to the last week than any other Gospel. Even here we have activities for only six of eight days. This section begins in John 12:1 and continues into John 20. Here is the way I have reconstructed it. Where John does not record the activity I have omitted the scripture reference.

  • Sunday — The King enters Jerusalem — 12:12-19
  • Monday — Cleansing the Temple —
  • Tuesday — Visit of the Greeks — 12:20-36
  • Tuesday — Jewish rejection — 12:37-50
  • Wednesday — No events recorded in the Gospels
  • Thursday Evening — Passover Meal, including Washing Disciples Feet (only in John) — 13:1-38
  • Thur. Eve — Farewell discourses — 14—16
  • Thur. Eve — Prayer — 17
  • Thur. Eve — Annas (only in John) — 18:12-14
  • Thur. Eve — Caiaphas — 18:24-28
  • Friday — Pilate — 18:28—19:16
  • Friday — Crucifixion — 19:16-42
  • Sabbath —
  • First Day — Resurrection — 20

It should be noted that the appearance before Annas and Caiaphas were the Jewish (Religious) trials. The appearance before Pilate [and Herod Antipas] were the Roman (Civil) trials.

John does not record the pronouncement of woes on the religious leaders, the institution of the Lord’s Supper, and the account of the agony in the Garden of Gethsemane.

With this sparse attention given to two weeks, no wonder John says,

Now there are also many other things that Jesus did. Were every one of them to be written, I suppose that the world itself could not contain the books that would be written. (John 21:25 ESV)

There is a medieval wood carving of the last week of Jesus in Notre Dame (Paris). In this photo you see the representation of the last supper, the washing of the disciples’ feet, and the agony in Gethsemane. (Sorry, this was made nearly a decade ago and I don’t have a hi-res photo.)

Wood carving of Last Week of Jesus in Notre Dame. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

Wood carving of Last Week of Jesus in Notre Dame. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

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2 responses to “The last week in the Gospel of John

  1. When I asked a woman working with English speaking people there in Notre Dame about the carvings, she explained that the many carvings and paintings in the ancient cathedrals were necesary because most of the people could not read. That thought had never crossed my naive mind! Thanks for the pic and all your work, brother. I emailed you last Saturday, I hope you got it.
    Mark Russell

  2. Pingback: Reclining in the Upper Room | Ferrell's Travel Blog

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