John Gills Exposition of the Bible Commentary

Verse 41 (John 19:41)

Now in the place where he was crucified ,.... Which takes in all that spot of ground that lay on that side of the city where he was crucified; or near to the place of his crucifixion, for it was not a garden in which he was crucified:

there was a garden ; all gardens, except rose gardens, were without the city, as has been observed; see Gill on John 18:1 . This, it seems, belonged to Joseph: rich men used to have their gardens without the city for their convenience and pleasure:

and in the garden a new sepulchre ; they might not bury within the city. Some chose to make their sepulchres in their gardens, to put them in mind of their mortality, when they took their walks there; so R. Dustai, R. Janhal, and R. Nehurai, were buried, בפרדס , "in a garden", or orchard F6 Jechus haabot, p. 43. Ed. Hottinger. ; and so were Manasseh and Amon, kings of Judah, 2 Kings 21:18 . Here Joseph had one, hewn out in a rock, for himself and family, and was newly made. The Jews distinguish between an old, and a new sepulchre; they say F7 Massech. Sernacot, c. 24. fol. 16. 3. ,

קבר חדש , "a new sepulchre" may be measured and sold, and divided, but an old one might not be measured, nor sold, nor divided.'

Wherein was never man yet laid ; this is not improperly, nor impertinently added, though the evangelist had before said, that it was a new sepulchre; for that it might be, and yet bodies have been lain in it; for according to the Jewish canons F8 Ib. ,

"there is as a new sepulchre, which is an old one; and there is an old one, which is as a new one; an old sepulchre, in which lie ten dead bodies, which are not in the power of the owners, הריזה כקבר חדש , "lo, this is as a new sepulchre".'

Now Christ was laid in such an one, where no man had been laid, that it might appear certainly that it was he, and not another, that was risen from the dead.

- John Gills Exposition of the Bible Commentary