John 19:31 Since it was the preparation day, the Jews did not want the bodies to stay on the cross on the Sabbath (because that Sabbath was a great day). They requested that Pilate have the men’s legs broken and that their bodies be taken away.
John 19:32 So the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first man and of the other one who had been crucified with him.
John 19:33 When they came to Jesus, they did not break his legs since they saw that he was already dead.
John 19:34 But one of the soldiers stabbed his side with a spear, and at once blood and water escaped.
why water and blood?
Jesus experienced hypovolemic shock as a result of the ordeal he had gone through prior to his crucifixion, and it resulted in pericardial effusion – a buildup of fluid in the membrane surrounding his heart. That is one of the reasons for the water and blood that came from his side when it was pierced.
Another reason is that his crucifixion was God’s sacrifice for us. Sacrifices cleansed the worshippers by water and blood.
“purified with blood” – Hebrews 9:22
“washed in pure water” – Hebrews 10:22
“the blood of Jesus cleanses” – 1 John 1:7
“by water and the blood” – 1 John 5:6
“they have washed in the blood” – Revelation 7:14
All the blood sacrifices God had ordered his people to perform as part of their worship looked forward to this day, when God himself would provide the perfect sacrifice. It need never be repeated because it fully met the conditions to purchase permanent life for us sinners.
Thank you, Lord, our sacrifice.