As John presents the facts leading up to Yeshua’s death in chapter 19, he is methodical in presenting the connections between the events and prophecy. We see him explicitly mention prophetic fulfillment in several verses (John 19:24, 28, 36, 37), but another thing John is deliberate about doing in his account is pointing out the specific timing of events as they relate to Passover.
John carefully establishes the timeline for future readers, marking the time that Pilate handed Yeshua over to the religious leaders to be crucified. “Now it was the day of Preparation of the Passover. It was about the sixth hour…” (John 19:14). The “sixth hour” refers to noon.
He makes it clear that Yeshua’s death occurred before the beginning of Passover. “Since it was the day of Preparation, and so that the bodies would not remain on the cross on the Sabbath (for that Sabbath was a high day), the Jews asked Pilate that their legs might be broken and that they might be taken away.” (John 19:31) Again in the closing verse of the chapter, John clearly states that Yeshua’s death happened before evening. “So because of the Jewish day of Preparation, since the tomb was close at hand, they laid Yeshua there.” (John 19:42)
In Exodus 12:1-6, G-d lays out directions concerning the Passover lamb. He specifically directs the time that it was to be killed: “and you shall keep it until the fourteenth day of this month, when the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill their lambs at twilight.” (Exodus 12:6) John is showing the reader that Yeshua’s death occurred at the time that the Passover lambs were being sacrificed – drawing the connection for readers that Yeshua is the Passover lamb.
Over and over, John weaves through his narrative subtle and overt connections between Yeshua, G-d, and prophecies of the Messiah. He leaves us with a pile of evidence that is overwhelmingly convincing that Yeshua could be none other than G-d and the promised Messiah – the Passover lamb whose blood was shed that our lives might be spared.