The Cross – Part IINovember 9, 2006
Continued from // The Cross – Part I
As the procession neared Golgotha, a new feeling began to creep up on Jesus, a feeling He never felt before. Jesus began to feel the inconceivable weight of man’s sin. The feeling grew as He neared the crest of the hill. The Weight of Mankind weighed Him down so He could hardly walk. After a few more steps, the procession reached the crest of the hill. Finally Jesus could bear it no longer; with a cry He collapsed under the Weight of Mankind. Next to Him, Simon cried out and fell underneath the Cross and the two were pinned. Soldiers shouted and the Cross was lifted. One soldier jerked Jesus to His knees and drug him to the place where He was to be crucified. The other lifted Simon to his feet, and gave him a shove. “You are free to go,” the soldier grunted. Simon hesitated, looking towards Jesus and their eyes met. Jesus’ eyes were filled with pain and anguish, such that is incomprehensible to mortal man. Simon could not bear to look into those eyes, and with tears pouring down his face, Simon dashed down the hill back to Jerusalem.
When the soldier drug Jesus to the spot where He was to be crucified, he threw Him down at the foot of the Cross and jeered at Him. “Here is your doom. Today you will go down to the fires of Hell just like any other man.” Jesus made no reply, but got on his hands and knees and, to the astonishment of all who looked on, willingly crawled onto the cross. The soldiers murmured and looked at each other, as if unsure what to do. After a few moments, one of the officers cried out, “What are you doing? Get these men up on their crosses!” It was if time snapped back into motion and the soldiers went to their deadly work. Men bustled about each of the three crosses, readying them to be raised. One soldier seized a hammer and three nine-inch nails and ran to Jesus’ cross. He tossed two of the nails to the ground and held up the nail to drive it into Jesus’ wrist.
As the soldier raised the hammer, his gaze wandered to Jesus’ face. Jesus turned His head and looked into the man’s eyes and held them. The soldier stared back, his face a mixture of astonishment and horror; he couldn’t take his eyes from his Savior. The officer, seeing the man’s bewilderment, shoved him to the ground yelling. “Hurry up! We only have so much time! Nail that man to the cross!” Shaking himself, the soldier plucked up the hammer and nail from the ground. Again he placed the nail on Jesus’ wrist, and after checking to see if the nail was placed properly, shakily raised the hammer above his head.
Continued on // The Cross – Part III