After Jesus had been savagely beaten and brutalised in the early hours of the morning, now it was time for the main event.
Then they led him out to crucify him. – Mark 15:20
Crucifixion was designed as the ultimate propaganda of the Roman Empire. The idea was, “If you rebel against the laws of Rome, then pay attention because this is what will happen to you.” That’s why part of the crucifixion process was the procession to the place of execution, which wound its way through the streets of the city, so everyone could see.
In this procession, there were three prisoners to be executed. Because Jesus was the most important, he would have gone first. Each prisoner carried a wooden board, which was hung around their neck. The board announced the crime for which he was to be executed.
The condemned men were guarded by the squad of Roman soldiers who had been tasked with the execution. As they walked, they beat the condemned men to keep them moving forward and cleared the path and kept the crowds away if necessary.
It was a slow procession since the prisoners were carrying the heavy cross-beams of their crosses, and all of them had been viciously beaten for hours before this moment.
Because it was a slow procession, there was plenty of time for the chief priests or for Pilate to change their minds. Although Christ’s death had been prophesied, they still had free will as to their involvement.
Life is like that. It’s a slow procession, in which time and time again, God presents the Saviour before us, calling to our hearts to respond. But there was no mercy or kindness that day, only stubborn, arrogant pride. How is it for you?
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