The Meal

Judas is there. James and John , brothers of Thunder, want the best seat in the house, and heaven. Peter says he will never betray Jesus. There is tension at the table. Jesus shares the bread and cup with everyone in the room. I wonder what they had for dinner? At the end, they sang a song. What was the song ?

The Prayer Garden

Jesus goes off to pray. The disciples sleep. The tension was high here as well. Were there other people in the garden? Jesus prayed that he wished the next few hours would not have to happen. He is like us, he does not want to die.

The Arrest

The kiss of death is given to Jesus by Judas. Violence erupts, and someone gets their ear cut off. The tension is again high, but Jesus stops it by healing the ear of the man that has come to arrest him. There must have shouting and swearing and smashing of clubs. The soldiers and men of importance still arrest Jesus. The disciples are shocked, and they run away.

The Trial

The stories in the Bible are different, but Jesus is brought before the politicians and the religious leaders. They are going to find him guilty. They are afraid that he is a terrorist, a King or a false prophet or many other things. They have lived in fear for the last week because he has been in town for the Passover. He has turned the tables in the market, done some radical teaching and confronted many of the people in power. It is time to silence him. They are so set on killing him, that they release a convicted murderer in his place. We hear from Herod and Pilate, the politicians, and the religious leader, Caiaphas. If it was today, we would take down the radical rabbi.

The Torture

Jesus is beaten. He has a crown of thorns put on his head . He is spit on . He is verbally abused. He is stripped of his clothes, and he is lashed by the soldiers. And he is such a nice guy. He heals people. He invites people to be part of the Kingdom of God and Heaven. And yet, he is seen as a threat to the powers of the world.

The Walk to the Cross

Jesus carries the cross to the place of death. Simon of Cyrene carries it for part of the way too. They get it there. The crowd is no longer a parade, but a mob, out for blood, and the death of Jesus of Nazareth. The scream that they want him dead.

The Cross

It is done, Jesus to his Father, “Forgive them for they know not what they are doing” He breathes his last.

Stay with the story from the Meal, to the Cross. There are many Medieval paintings that depict this story, and they are called, “ECCE HOMO” This is humanity. This is the evil that we can do to each other. Stay with this story for the next three days.

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Fred Redekop
Fred has completed 25 years as pastor in Floradale. He now works for Mennonite Central Committee since October 2016.