[Note: This week I am chronicling the events of Holy Week with a short devotion each day.]
Jesus’ trial (which began late Thursday night) continued into Friday morning. Before the “third hour” (9 a.m.) the Lord had endured lies and condemnation, mockery, and beatings. He had been abandoned by his disciples (Judas had already hanged himself in remorse).
After multiple, unlawful trials, Jesus traveled the Via Dolorosa (“The Way of Suffering”) carrying his cross to the place of the skull, Golgotha. There, with a crown of thorns pressed into his head, he was nailed to a cross – a painful, disgraceful Roman creation to dispatch their most vile enemies.
Around the ninth hour (3 p.m.), after forgiving those who murdered him, Jesus breathed his last. By 6 p.m. he was taken down from the cross by Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea and placed in a sealed tomb.
“On a hill far away stood an old rugged cross,
The emblem of suff’ring and shame;
And I love that old cross where the dearest and best
For a world of lost sinners was slain”
So I’ll cherish the old rugged cross,
‘Til my trophies at last I lay down;
I will cling to the old rugged cross,
And exchange it someday for a crown.
~ George Bennard
Please join us tonight at 6 p.m. for our Good Friday service!