What kind of person arrives at a place where the next thing to do, the next choice, is to be nailed to a cross, resulting in death?
The Romans who practiced this form of capital punishment used it for criminals, enemies of the state, those who came against the Laws of Rome, and by this time in history, defiance of the demands of the Emperor . The accused, in this case a young Jew, could call for help from the Temple leaders. There could have been a way out, a compromise. A person could always plead for mercy. Advocates could wrangle, argue, demand, plead, bargain. But that didn’t happen. There was no friend on the horizon. The young Jewish man did not call for any human help… did not retract his claims…
The Romans despised those going to the cross. They mocked them. So did everyone else. The lowest of the low went to the cross. Public humiliation, public stripping, public execution.
So what kind of person would chose this? I guess it would be someone who thought it might do some good, might provide something for others, might undo a curse or tear down a prison, might turn things around and bring a new kind of life. It certainly was not an easy decision, not an easy road. Only a very strong person would chose it. Stronger than death, it would seem.
A Victor would do this. An all-time Winner. A Lover of Souls. A Savior.
Statue of Cristo Rey, Uribici Soler sculptor, Mount Cristo Rey, New Mexico. Photo by Max Bower