VIA DOLOROSA; Step 4

Mark 15:16-20      “The soldiers took Jesus into the palace (called Praetorium) and called together the entire brigade. They dressed him up in purple and put a crown plaited from a thornbush on his head. Then they began their mockery: “Bravo, King of the Jews!” They banged on his head with a club, spit on him, and knelt down in mock worship. After they had had their fun, they took off the purple cape and put his own clothes back on him. Then they marched out to nail him to the cross.”

The entire brigade came out for this, the entire brigade; that is 1500 – 3500 men! When the brigade came out it was to scourge Christ. The Bible assumes people know what it meant to be scourged under the Roman Empire so it doesn’t go into detail on that (David McClister does here), it does however give details of the extra beatings and humiliation Christ went through. 

He was mocked with a royal robe and given a crown of thorns made from the jujube tree (a deciduous tree found near Jerusalem, with thorns measuring an inch long or more). By placing a crown of thorns on His head the soldiers symbolically put the curse of man (Genesis 3:18) upon Christ. That curse was lifted with Christ’s resurrection. That crown thorns was replaced with glory as Christ ascended to the Father. Scourging, mocking Him and forcing Him to wear the crown wasn’t enough; they sacked Him in the head with clubs to drive those thorns into His head as they called Him names and laughed at His naked body.

Where was the Man who walked on water, stilled the elements, turned water into wine and brought the dead to life? Why was there no display of power? The answer is you and I. Christ was so determined to restore us to God that He endured what He never should have. He endured it in silence and grace and that left Him weak; too weak to carry His cross, but strong enough to show compassion to those that grieved for Him. 

Think About This 
Bible tell us that by His stripes we are healed and He was crushed for our iniquities. Was Christ’s sacrifice worth it? How can you make sure it wasn’t in vain?

Prayer

Dear Lord, May I never take your sufferings in vain; may they be to me a reminder of the path of righteousness and a source of strength. In Jesus name I pray. Amen

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