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The Warrior
by Julie Michaelson
03/20/13
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Pilate
said to them,
'Whom do you
want me to
release for you,
Barabbas or
Jesus,
who is called
Christ?'.
[Matthew 27:17]
*******************
Time: The week following
The Resurrection.
Place: A desolate area, up in the mountains, outside of the city of Jerusalem.
Characters: Barabbas, the criminal whom Governor Pilate
had freed during the Passover; a man
clothed in the fighting armor of a mighty warrior,
and one of The Lord's angels.
________________________________________
"Who..........ARE......you?"
Barabbas shouted in a loud, angry voice. He had lunged out of the bush; he was a wild-looking, half-clothed man brandishing a huge knife: a ragged, dirty scarf was bound around his long, thick, black hair, and it was apparent that his nose had been broken a least once or twice in his life. He smelled like he had been living in a cave for the past two weeks. A long, jagged scar ran down across his left cheekbone, and many of his teeth were broken, or missing. Barabbas hadn't seen anyone for days, and he was... well....a little jumpy, to say the least. It had been two weeks since he had been freed, and Barabbas was ready to fight for his freedom again....or anything else, for that matter. He had stolen the knife on his way out of Jerusalem, and had hurriedly slipped into the darkness: hiding under sewage, and behind barnyards, until he was able to climb up into the rocks and desolate mountains. He was planning to gain some strength back, after his cruel hospitality with the Romans, before heading east, toward Asia. He had hidden out in caves during the day, and searched for food by night: not even venturing to start a fire, in order to cook his food of lizards and mice. The smell and light from a campfire would only bring curious wanderers.....or, Roman soldiers.

Only, Barabbas wasn't prepared for the sight of his lone visitor; in shock he fell back on his heels: his heavy
knife falling to the rocky ground with a bare thudding sound. Barabbas gasped: his dark eyes widening in terror under his thick, black, bushy eyebrows. He had seen many a sight in his days, since a lad, as a guerrilla fighter against
the Roman invaders; and here he was: gasping in fear, like a woman.

The Man standing before him was an alien Warrior: authoritative, of the upmost calm, and quite stunning to behold. He had a helmet of pure gold, and his armour was unlike any that Barabbas had ever seen:
perfectly molded, and laden with exquisite jewels like that from a king's palace. In His Hand burnished a majestic golden sword: its handle was inlaid with the same color jewels as the armour. The Man's feet were clad in something horrifically bright, and His eyes glowed like lightening.

Barabbas squinted; it was pitch dark out...in the middle of the night, and yet he couldn't look into the Man's eyes for very long: it was like looking straight into the sun. Barabbas held up one shaking hand to his ruggedly bearded, and scarred face, and cried out.
"What do you........WANT....of ME?"

The Warrior smiled, and
then chuckled. His smile was kind,
and His Voice was soft, and yet
commanding.
"I want you to be....
in My Army,
Barabbas."

The Warrior's helmet was emblazoned with a Crown of Jewels:
sparkling like the stars in the midnight sky. The smell
of fire was in the air: like the crackling, fresh scent of a warm, inviting campfire.
"How..........
how do you know.....
my NAME?"
Barabbas continued to hold
his hand up to his face; he began
scrambling backward on his knees:
shaking violently.

Another soldier appeared: standing
behind The Warrior.
"Do not be afraid.
He is The LORD!"

Barabbas looked up: his teeth were
chattering as if he were sick with
fever. He gasped once more, almost
swallowing his own breath.

Legions and legions of huge, magnificently robed men stood behind the Mighty Warrior: each carrying swords ablaze with fire. They were all barefoot, and had strange glows of
light over their heads. None rode on horseback; they
were huge, and muscular, and carried something strange-
looking on their broad backs.

Barabbas leaned forward, hesitantly, and squinted
in the night; what were they...CARRYING? Barabbas
closed his eyes and shook his head slightly. Then
he opened them again: searching through the
centuries, and centuries of soldiers before him. He
counted their number, and gasped.

There were twelve legions in all.

Barabbas squinted up at the soldier
who had just spoken. His mouth was
dry, and his voice cracked.
"Who are.......YOU?"

The soldier spoke; he was horribly
ferrocious-looking, and would have
terrified even the most weathered Roman
officer.
"I am MICHAEL!"
The soldier immediately knelt
behind The Warrior: face down,
and his flaming sword upon the
ground.
"......the Archangel of The LORD!"

Barabbas was awestruck by this....
MICHAEL's.....size, and strength,
and incredible...humility.
"I......I am.....UNFIT.....to
SERVE...in such...an ARMY!"
Barabbas whispered to himself.
He continued to scramble back on
his heels: kicking up dust and dirt.
"Perhaps.....I am DREAMING!"

The Warrior chuckled again;
His Face was kind, and compassionate.
"You are not dreaming,
My child."
He smiled.
"I saved you,
Barabbas, for this
purpose: to be one of
My soldiers....!"

Barabbas looked up once more,
at The Warrior. He squinted
again from the Shining Light,
and the Blazing Swords of Fire
from the Warrior's Legions.
"SAVED....me?
How could you have SAVED me?"

The Warrior gazed down;
His face was kind, and full of Grace
and Glory.
"It was I,
Who took your
place,
My child."

"NO!
That CAN'T be!"
Barabbas shouted; he was still
shaking with fear, and sweat was
dripping down his leathery,
sunburnt face. Salt from his sweat
stung a nasty wound, from one of his
prison beatings, that was still healing.
"It was.....JESUS...
of....NAZARETH!"

At the sound of the Name,
all the other soldiers, from the
Twelve Legions, fell face down
and knelt: their flaming swords
lying before them.

Barabbas stared at all the
angelic soldiers. Very hesitantly
he gazed up at The Warrior,
Whose Helmet was encircled
by such a Bejeweled Crown.
"It was......JESUS.........
Jesus.......
of NAZARETH.......
he wore a crown...
of bloody THORNS..,
so I was TOLD.........!"

The Warrior nodded.
He spoke softly, and slowly:
holding out one Hand,
Palm upwards,
showing the Scar on His Wrist.
"I AM....
He,
child."

Barabbas's eyes widened in horror,
and recognition; he had seen men's
bodies after they had been crucified:
their wrists, though bloody and swollen,
and disfigured, had shown the same wound
from the Roman's spikes.

Only, this Man's Wound.....had healed.

No.
That was impossible.

Barabbas' suddenly swallowed; a stream of
hot vomit was hitting the back of his
parched throat.
"No...."
Barabbas whispered.
"No!"

All was quiet, as if the only world
that Barabbas knew had simply paused
for one long moment. The night air
was full of the scent of the angelic Host's blazing
fiery swords. Nothing else stirred in
this lonely part of the mountains,
behind Jerusalem.

The Warrior moved forward, in all His
Majesty, and put a warm palm over Barabbas'
shaking shoulder; He whispered.
"I AM.... Jesus,
of Nazareth,
My child.
I AM...your
Savior,
and
King."
**************************
My kingship
is not
of
this world.
[John 18:36]

Copyright 2013.



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