In Mark 14:65, the religious leaders spit on Jesus and struck him with their fists. The Roman soldiers had more practice abusing prisoners. They added a crown of thorns, a purple robe, and mocking shouts of “Hail, King of the Jews!” between blows. They didn’t limit the “fun” to just the soldiers on duty—they called out the whole company to join in.
- “God knows what it means to feel small, to be attacked mentally and emotionally, and to be physically abused.” When have you faced abuse that made you feel helpless or small? How can it be healing to realize that Jesus shared that painful experience with you?
- Jesus had not insulted or threatened the Roman soldiers. Their cruelty toward him was casual. Do you see any parallel between their actions and the jeering at others that goes on around business rivalries, political issues or even sports (it is “March Madness” time)? Is that “just fun,” or have you ever seen (or felt) it turn cruel?
So if you read my last post you know where I stand on the whole flogging thing. But if you want to know where I think the real pain, the real anguish that Christ suffered for all is found it is here at the sharp bitter end of peoples tongues. Yeah, I know physical pain, I don’t like it any more than any one else, but this… this is salt, this is lemon juice in the wounded body and soul of Jesus.
Maybe it was because I was teased as a kid. I often felt mocked and ridiculed as a child and it is here where I think I most identify with the sufferings of Jesus. It is here where he and I have walked many miles together, here it is that I have known how much I am really loved.