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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Snap (09/04/08)

TITLE: The Snaps He Bore
By Joshua Janoski


He hung over a stone pillar, hands bound and trembling with only a small white cloth to cover his otherwise naked body. The Roman lictor paced back and forth with leather braids in hand while he surveyed the man who was bent down before him. With an emotionless gaze, he drew his arm back and released the rawhide tentacles onto the man’s back.


The man cried out in agony as the leather knots struck, leaving behind streaks of blue and purple as they pulled back into the air. Each streak, like a hurtful word poured out from a mouth filled with malice, leaving behind scars and pain beneath the surface.


The braids returned for a second swipe, this time across his shoulder blades. His face fell forward as his body throbbed with the pain of every aborted child that never got to experience the life that had been gifted to them.


The sheep bone and metal tips dug into His back, ripping into the contusions and pulling away pieces of His flesh with them as they retracted back to the side of the lictor. A crimson flow of blood began to seep out and run down His body, carrying with it the burdens of drug and alcohol addiction. The wicked weapon was passed on to another guard who resumed the onslaught, this time attacking his left leg.


Then proceeding to rip into his right leg.


His cries grew louder, stealing away the miniscule amount of air that remained in his lungs. He looked up into the sky, and all He could see was darkness as the weights of adultery, fornication, lust, and pornography poured out of his limbs and onto the stone floor. The Roman soldier laughed at his victim, oblivious to the fact that every drop of crimson that lay splattered across the ground had been released to forgive him for heinous acts such as the one that he was committing at that very moment.


Muscle tissue was severed, causing deep ribbons of ripped flesh covered in red. His capillaries and veins were torn, releasing even more blood onto the ground. The deeper the wounds, the deeper the crimes, as He felt the pains of murder, hatred, bitterness, and idolatry surge through his nervous system, each one adding to His suffering and weakness.


Each lash became more brutal than the last one until He had received thirty-nine lashes in all. Each swipe across His body carried with it the weight of the world. The pain and loss of blood sent His body into circulatory shock. His tied hands finally gave way, and His body came crashing down to the ground, splashing into the puddle of crimson underneath Him. Though already close to death, this was only the beginning of His punishment.


His emotions lay scattered and broken as He carried the large tree over his shoulder. The crowd around Him spat obscenities and mocked Him. Their cackles of wickedness sounded so very different from the boisterous laughter that He heard from them when He rode into the city just a week earlier. The weight was no longer felt on His physical body only. His mind, too, was plagued with every bit of evil that man had brought into the world. He was led up a hill and laid across the wooden beam.


The bones in his hands broke apart as the spikes were driven deep into His palms. The tree was lifted and His Father turned away, unable to look at Him. He faced out towards the very ones who He had come to save, none of which showed Him any love or appreciation. His breathing became heavier as He slowly suffocated. Hours had passed…


Bolts of lightning struck the ground, dark clouds swirled, and the Earth shook with a mighty tremble, tearing the veil of the temple. His limp body was pulled to the ground and wrapped in spices and cloth. Several days passed, and on the third day, one final sound could be heard off in the distance…


The tomb’s stone door clicked open, and the figure of a man could be seen walking out. The price had been paid.

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This article has been read 1020 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Leah Nichols 09/11/08
Excellent writing! You've captured the moment perfectly.
Shirley McClay 09/11/08
Oh my goodness... WOW... I have no words. I hope this wins!
Amy Michelle Wiley 09/11/08
Very skilled writing. I love how you have the specific sins with each lash.
Chely Roach09/12/08
This was beyond incredible. Wow...
Lyn Churchyard09/12/08
Words fail me except to say this was heart wrenchingly amazing.
mick dawson09/12/08
I don't have words myself to express how good this is. I have read countless Biblical reinactments that have yawned me into a coma, but you have expressed perfectly what Jesus' death was all about.
Sunny Loomis 09/13/08
Excellent and heart wrenching. I hope this piece places high. Thank you.
Mary Alice Bowles09/13/08
Wow, praise God, Praise God!

Thank you for writing about the wonderful price That Jesus paid for a sinner such as I..

Isaiah 53:5

But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

This should be a winner..!!

Joy Faire Stewart09/13/08
I'm in awe! Masterful writing on what our Savior paid for all. It had to have been inspired.
Joy Faire Stewart09/14/08
Josh, I had to add an additional note...I have been looking forward to knowing the author of this entry. It is one of the best I have read on FW's!
Beth LaBuff 09/14/08
Excellent writing. You took the reader there and we saw (and heard) afresh the "price he paid."
Joanne Sher 09/15/08
Absolutely, positively INCREDIBLE. I am glad you sent me to this, Josh. This is SO obviously inspired by God. I felt every crack of the whip, and I don't think I breathed the whole time I was reading it. WOW.
Shelley Ledfors 09/15/08
Wow. This was at the same time wonderful and terrible to read. It must have been incredibly difficult, emotionally to write. (I have recently finished a piece that was like that for me). Thank you for being the Lord's vessel for this amazing work!
Celeste Ammirata09/15/08
Excellent! Hearbreaking, soul wrenching account of what our Lord suffered for us. Wow! God bless you for writing this.
Sherry Castelluccio 09/15/08
Josh, I can hardly see with the tears. I think this is probably your best work so far. The work that you put into this is more than obvious. I'll be stunned if it doesn't place. Well done, my friend. You're on your way to level 4.
Kristen Hester09/16/08
Your writing is so descriptive. I felt his pain. I felt the shame. You are a fantastic writer. We serve an AWESOME GOD!
Valarie Sullivan09/16/08
You took us there. You made us feel the pain. You helped us to see the mystery behind the sacrifice.
Thank you.
Loren T. Lowery09/16/08
Poetically beautiful, and vibrates a truth that impacts the soul itself. Masterfully done and inspired.
Clyde Blakely09/16/08
Go Sarah, Sarah, Sarah!

Palin power! Lipstick in every house!

Whether or not this is about Sarah Palin (can't imagine it would be - Vice President named Sarah, purely a coincidence I'm sure), it makes even us men proud to see a woman stand up and prove she can do it!
Clyde Blakely09/16/08
Ouch, how did my comment get on this article? Computer error for sure.

As for this article, I've read it three times now and am awed by His sacrifice for me. God bless and keep writing.
Glynis Becker09/16/08
Bravo! Beautifully executed! The weight of what He did baffles me every time I stop to really consider it. You've given us a unique way of relating to it and seeing it afresh. Really wonderful work, Josh. Thank you for allowing God to share it through you.
Edmond Ng 09/16/08
You have described the passion of Christ following the trail leading to His agonizing death in such imagery that evokes not only emotions but also draw readers to tears. Great piece of inspired work with a triumphant ending.
Karlene Jacobsen09/17/08
Thank you Josh for listening to the prodding of the LORD.

You placed me there, on the side-lines as I watched the entire scene.

I think sometimes we forget the magnitude of the price HE paid for us all, and tend to take for granted our salvation. I know I have been guilty, but thankfully, there's grace and forgiveness.

Thank you again. THis one needs to be shared!
Scott Sheets09/17/08
It's hard to add anymore to the fitting comments already mentioned. So let me simply say, "Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends." John 15:13
Thanks for sharing!
Sharlyn Guthrie09/17/08
This is painful to read, but oh, so well said.
Pamela Kliewer09/17/08
WOW - this was inspired for sure. Thank you.
Gerald Shuler 09/17/08
Where you have gone with your writing does not surprize me. You have always put God first on FW. Your faithfulness will take you places you never dreamed you would be lead.

It's Wednesday, no winners yet, but I still commend you for such an outstanding soul winning entry. If (when?) it wins a ribbon or EC, you'll be commended again for that accomplishment as well.
LauraLee Shaw09/17/08
Absolutely anointed. I worshipped.
T. F. Chezum09/17/08
Add another WOW! I cannot add anything to the comments you received already. Great job.
Kristi Peifer09/17/08
Awesome, awesome, awesome! I read this with my jaw hanging open. I would like to keep this one and read it over and over again. I'd like to share it with my pastor--would you mind if I asked him to put it in our church bulletin?
Joshua Janoski09/17/08

You are more than welcome to use the article in your church bulletin. All I ask is that I get credited as the author and that none of the writing is modified (which I know you wouldn't do). It would also be cool to get a copy of the bulletin if you would be able to give me one, but if not you still have my permission to use it. :)

So glad this is blessing people...Praise God!