At the age of 33, Jesus is condemned to death. At the time crucifixion was the worst kind of death, designated for the worst kind of offenders. Jesus was nailed to the cross, each nail as long as eight inches, while wearing a wreath of thorns which were a minimum of an inch dip into His scalp, His forehead.
Imagine having to carry a large cross on a ripped skin, in a dry, hot and dusty weather, on a cobbled street, tugging the cross which stuck on his sticky skin to further peel it away.
All the while, the same people He healed, their brothers, sisters, parents, children, grandparents and grandchildren spat on Him, shove Him and even threw stones at Him.
When I was much younger, the punishment for misbehaving was to raise my hands up and sometimes also stand on one leg. So imagine that your hands had to be raised but with nails in your wrist, the nails piercing your epidermis, your dermis, rupturing blood vessels, tendon and bone. Have you ever experienced the pain that occurs when you hit your toe against a hard surface? Then imagine a nail piercing through your feet, one foot after the other. Your hands are still raised. They are now numb and your feet cannot carry your weight any longer but blood is still flowing therefore the pain is excruciating as your body urges you to run but there is nothing you can do. So you use you body, mainly your back to support your hand and try to shy away from your feet, buckling your knees in the process, sending the support back to the core of your body, i.e. your back.
Headache is but a drop of water in the ocean compared to the pain of having pointy freshly whirled thorns piercing your skin, the desire to scratch the itch is unbearable, your body starts to shiver from the frustration of staying put but the body is also afraid of shutting down even as blood oozes from the seared skin – that the pinkish red of the dermis just beneath the skin – now rusty and dry and sticky and itching with the kind of itch that you cannot scratch.
You loose so much blood your body needs a refill so you’re thirsty, but this thirst water cannot satisfy, its the kind of thirst that urges doctors to give transfusion. The blood carrying oxygen is zapped. The heart is out of supply, the lungs cannot supply demand, breathing is rationed. Survival, the body is desperate for anything else… water.
Three whole hours of torture, for a vibrant young, tall, handsome man in his prime. Why? Because He believed we stood a chance.
I will not tell you how to live your life. I will not preach to you because I don’t know how to. I will however tell you, this is not the ice age where you would claim to have your head buried in the sand. His words have been echoed, the terms’ still thrumming. So today, choose, whom you’ll serve.