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August 7, 2021

On that momentous day, He surrendered to the will of the Father, and His enemies hung Him naked. He took the abuse, pain, and humiliation and made the ultimate sacrifice for all of us. He could have stopped His crucifixion, but He chose to suffer the excruciating pain and the embarrassment. He was innocent of all the charges against Him, yet He accepted the abuse placed on Him.

Like many of you, I visualized Jesus on the cross as depicted in the many displayed portrays of His crucifixion. I saw His arms stretched out on a wooden cross with spikes driven through the palm of his hands.  One foot was placed upon the other with a spike piercing and tacking them on the wood. Additionally, I saw whip marks across His chest and a small piece of material covering his loins. Unfortunately, after the hours of inquisition, what is portrayed is not an accurate picture of how Jesus looked.

The account of Jesus’s crucifixion experience is written in Psalms 22:1-22; Isaiah 50:6; Isaiah 52:14; Isaiah 53:3-12; Matthew 26-27; Mark 14-15; Luke 22-23; and John 18-19. If you want more insight, I recommend that you do as I did and research the Roman practice of crucifixion to reveal a more vivid account of what transpired.

The scripture revealed while praying in the Garden of Gethsemane with His disciples and awaiting His captors, Jesus experienced hematidrosis, which resulted in Him sweating blood from the thought of what He was about to experience. It is here in the middle of the night Jesus is arrested and taken to Caiaphas, the high priest and the Sanhedrin where he was questioned, and because they thought He had blasphemed God, they plucked out His beard. Additionally, He was blindfolded, punched, slapped, and spat in the face by the guards.

In the early morning, He was taken to Pontus Pilate, the governor, to answer the charge of blasphemy, and when he refused to defend himself, Pilate sentenced Jesus to death. However, prior to His crucifixion, the Roman soldiers scourged Him, pressed a crown of thrones on His head, and struck it with a scepter.

With His body bleeding, marred beyond that of any human being, He was made to carry His cross through the streets to Golgotha until Simon the Cyrene was enlisted to help carry the cross.  The week before the people had spread their garments in the streets as Jesus rode through Jerusalem while they cried, “Hosanna to the son of David: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highes,” but now some of the people jeered and mocked Him as He passed by.

At Golgotha, they offered Jesus wine mixed with myrrh which would have numb some of His pain, but He refused to drink it. So, He experienced added pain as the soldiers mercilessly nailed Him naked to the cross.

Medical science believed on the cross, Jesus probably experienced cramps, spasms, dehydration, dislocation of shoulders, lungs collapse, and heart failure. Altogether He experienced these five kinds of wounds: contusion, laceration, penetration. perforation and the last incision when a soldier thrust a spear into His side. However, in the midst of His pain and humiliation, Jesus continued to show concern for the people, for He prays for their forgiveness, and He connects His mother with His beloved disciple. 

Everyone on Golgotha saw His horrendous physical wounds; however, few could imagine the mental and emotional pain He suffered. First, Jesus suffered the rejection of His disciples after He was arrested. Then while on the cross, He felt alone, rejected, and separated from His Father for the first time in His existence; so, He cried with a loud voice, “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” Nevertheless, in the final hour of earthly life, Jesus knowing He had fulfilled His purpose and God was in control He was heard saying, “It is finished” and “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.”

As a result of what I now know, Jesus’ crucifixion has added meaning to me. God allowed the people to see Him naked; nothing was hidden from their eyes. Jesus’ body fully exhibited the mistreatment and abuse He bore due to lies and jealousy. He hung naked as an example for us, for many of us have experienced pain and suffering at the hands of others. We have been ashamed and embarrassed to let people know what happened, but Jesus showed us what to say and do as He hung naked, completely exposed for all to witness. His experience served a greater good, and possibly our exposure could do the same.

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