Then the Jews, since it was the day of preparation and so that the bodies might not remain on the cross on the Sabbath (for that Sabbath day was a great Sabbath), requested of Pilate that their legs might be broken and that they might be taken away.
The soldiers therefore came and broke the legs of the first man and of the other man who had been crucified with Him.
But coming to Jesus, when they saw that He had already died, they did not break His legs;
The Jews, not wanting the bodies to remain on the cross on the Sabbath, asked Pilate that their legs might be broken. The soldiers then broke the legs of the two thieves who had been crucified with the Lord. But when they came to Jesus, they saw that He had already died. Since the Lord had already died, it was needless for them to break His bones. This indicates that, in a sense, the Lord Jesus was not put to death by human hands but that He died Himself. Although He was crucified, He died Himself, fulfilling His word spoken in 10:17 and 18, where He said, “I lay down My life that I may take it again. No one takes it away from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it again.” Apparently, Jesus was killed; actually, He laid down His psuche life, His soulish life, and died. While the two criminals were killed, Jesus was not. Rather, He laid down His psuche life for our redemption. Since He had already died, the soldiers did not break His legs. This sovereignly fulfilled the prophecy which said, “Not a bone of Him shall be broken” (19:36).