I woke early that morning to what I thought would be an ordinary day. I was not aware however, that it would not be an ordinary day at all, but an extraordinary day, a day like I had never known before in my life. I prepared myself for my daily tasks and went about them methodically. It was time to get fresh water for the day, so I picked up the large pottery ewer that would hold the clean, fresh water that I would draw from the well. As I made my way outdoors, I noticed that there were many people bustling about there was more activity than usual, many people filled the streets and shops. I looked toward the direction of the well and could see several women standing it. As I approached the women I could hear them talking, I took my place in line to wait my turn to draw my water, and I listened while I waited. What I heard the women saying was the beginning of my life being changed forever.
“Ahh, It is true.” I heard one woman say, “Yes, yes, Last night, they arrested Jesus, you know, that man from Nazareth, the one they say is the Messiah”, as she finished speaking, another woman spoke up and said “Yes, it is true, I heard it too, Jesus was arrested last night as he prayed in the garden at Gethsemane, the soldiers came and they took him away. He will stand before Pontius Pilot today, to answer for his crime.”
I could not believe what I was hearing, I put my hands over my ears, I did not want to hear anymore. Jesus could not have committed a crime. He was the one who healed the sick, He gave sight to the blind, He cast out demons from men, and He raised a child from the dead. This could not be possible, for I believed that Jesus was the Messiah. A young woman with tears falling from her eyes spoke next and said “They say that because of the Passover, Pilot will release one prisoner today, the others will be crucified, but will Pilot choose Jesus?”
I dropped my ewer, it fell to the ground, and broke into pieces, that is when I heard the hoof beat of the soldier’s horses. They came upon us quickly and they yelled out a warning to the people to clear the streets and to make way; they were bringing a prisoner through the town to the hill at Calvary.
The people moved quickly out of the path of the soldiers making way for them to pass. Behind them was a man, he wore a crown of thorns upon his head, and He carried a wooden beam that was tied across his shoulders, the weight of it crushing him.
His body had been whipped and beaten, the stripes of the whip covering his entirety. He bled from the open wounds and gashes that covered his physical being.
Suddenly, a soldier called out to the crowd in a mocking fashion, “Make way for the prisoner, make way I say, for here we have the prisoner they call Jesus of Nazareth, huh, the King of the Jews, look, see how he carries the his royal crown upon his head”
I fell to my knees, my legs could no longer hold me, I could not breath, the tears that flowed upon my face burned my skin, this was a sorrow greater than any sorrow I had ever known. As Jesus, the Messiah passed by me, I looked upon His face, and I could hardly speak, but I cried out to Him, “My, my Lord, what have they done to you, my Lord?”
As my Messiah bore the weight of the sins of the world on his shoulders, and with a crown of thorns driven deep into the flesh of his brow, and with His body beaten and bloodied, He smiled at me. I looked into His eyes, and in them, I saw more love than the world could ever hold. It poured out from an endless depth within Him, with an intensity that was unexplainable. I could not grasp it all, I could not grasp enough of the love I could see He felt for me and all mankind, and in His eyes, I saw the heart of God.
I followed as the soldiers led him through the streets. He was the lamb of God, being led to slaughter. I could not take my eyes off of Him. He stumbled and fell, but no one would help. He struggled to stand but He could not, and fell once more. This time a man from the crowd reached out to help Him, he lifted the heavy beam that was tied to Jesus shoulders to relieve the weight of the burden, and than Jesus was able to stand.
As he stood, I could see that He was covered in blood and sand; the sand sticking to His wounds as it seared into the open gashes that covered His bruised, and swollen body. The suffering He endured was beyond what could be imagined.
We were getting closer now and I could see the top of the hill, we were not far away from it at all. It would not be much longer until they crucified my Lord.
As we approached Calvary Hill, I could see three posts on the top of the hill. They were planted deeply into the ground, and they stood very tall, they seemed to eagerly wait being transformed into crosses for those who were to be crucified upon them. My eyes were fixed on those posts, as they stood stark and frightening against the sky. It seemed that my eyes held fast to them and they were all that I could see.
I wondered how my Lord would make it up that hill with the burden that He carried, and I wept as the soldiers pushed and prodded and hurried Him along the way.
Then the soldiers led my Lord up the hill, a hill to steep, for a man who was beaten, and laden, as Jesus was. The soldiers led my Lord to the center post at the top of the hill, where they laid Him on the ground, and then they barbarically nailed him by his wrists, to the beam he had carried for so long.
They gave Him bitter water, and then, with a soldier holding each side of the beam, they climbed up their ladders and carried Jesus toward the top of the post. The soldiers then attached the beam to the post, making it secure; and that is when that post became the old rugged cross that my Lord Jesus Christ, My Messiah, My Deliver, was crucified on.
In the final moments Jesus cried out to the Father, “Abba Father, why have thou forsaken me.” His last thoughts and words were for the world that He so love, and than He cried out to the father “Forgive them, for they know not what they do”, and after a pause, with His final breath He said “ It is finished” and He gave up His spirit to His father in heaven.
Then the sky became as dark as night, the ground began to rumble, there was weeping, and sobbing with great lament, for the Light of the World had gone out of the day, and the gloomy darkness loomed over all
Jesus was removed from the cross and buried in a tomb. On that day at Calvary, when Jesus Christ died for the sins of the world, the day He died for my sins, I knew that I would never be the same again, nothing ever would be the same again. I was changed forevermore, I knew of his love for me, and that He was my Savior, my Salvation.
Three days later, I heard the glorious news, that the tomb of Jesus was found empty. When I heard, I knew instantly that my Lord had “risen” from the dead. I knew that He would live and reign forever and ever in His father’s Kingdom of Heaven, just like He said He would do.
I know that someday I will join Him and that I too will have everlasting life, in His everlasting love, in the everlasting Kingdom of God.
Today, I rejoice and I sing praise to His name, for the Resurrection of my Lord. He has risen, Jesus Christ has risen.