Friday, April 29, 2011

A Short Story: A Cruel and Unusual Punishment, Part Three

"Why? He's done nothing! He is guilty only of unwavering idealism and speaking out against the party line. Why Him?"

It suddenly became clear to me. It was all a political ploy! My freedom was only convenient. Nobody wanted me to live, they only wanted Him to die!

I finally saw it...there was my cross.


My shame was mounting with every step of the procession. His agony was for me. He was not only carrying my cross, He was bearing my guilt. He was being executed in my place.

I couldn't look any more. I started to turn, but then, a gasp--a tiny whisper--thundered in my ears.

"Forgive them?" He said, "Father forgive them!"

"Oh, Lord, where is the justice? Where is the righteousness of this? He shouldn't be there. It should be me!"

Then He turned and looked at me, or should I say through me. His eyes pierced through my soul. He knew! He knew that I was to blame! He knew that it was my cross! He knew that I was the murderer!

But His face still had those words on it. Then He said them again, while He was still reading the headlines of my soul--"Forgive them."

I was wanted! I was loved!

The Jewish religious leaders didn't really want me? They only used me. In those eyes, in those words, I found the acceptance I had always desired; and from the one place I would least expect it.

I followed the group up the hill. I watched as the crosses were raised. I watched the men slowly die. I have seen good men die, but this man was different. He was more than a good man. He was the One, the innocent lamb of God, slaughtered for our sin.

I died that day. I too was crucified on that afternoon. The Barabbas that was full of hatred was put to death with the others. I finally found peace. I finally found justice. I finally found a cause worth living for. I found it there at the cross.

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