Summary: This sermon was used as a drama, while dressed as a Roman soldier.
We could tell that day that pilate wanted to be done with this trial. He wanted to just punish Jesus and send him on his way. But that did not go over very well with the crowds or the chief priests.
I remember him giving the crowds the choice of what to do that day. You see it was customary for the governor at the passover season to pardon and release any one condemned prisoner whom the people might name. On that day there was one who was awaiting execution, he was suppose to be going to the cross. He was a notable prisoner, found guilty of murder, His name was Barabbas. I think pilate was just trying to pacify the the priests and the people, so he asked them,, " whom shall I release to you,,Barabbas, or Jesus which is called Christ.?" When he asked that the 1st time, you could almost see the chief priests and elders running through the crowds urging them to demand that Barrabas to be released that day. So Pilates asked again, and when he did the crown erupted with the name Barrabas. I could see that he was kinda taken back with the answer, and that's when he asked, "what shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ?"
That's when the crowd got even louder and started yelling the he be crucified, Crucify him, is what the crowd continued to yell.
That's when the order came down, Pilalte released barrabas, and we were given custody of Jesus to be scourged, we were to punish him severely but not kill him.
Now I am just a soldier, just doing my job, you see I had my orders. My orders were to beat and punish Jesus. We all had the tools we used to punish him, you see it wasn't just me that was following orders. As by procedure some of us had iron balls on the end of chains, when we would hit Jesus's back with those it would cause deep contusions,. Some of us had whips, but these weren't normal whips, they had many leather strands at the end , and each strand had pieces of bone or metal at the ends of them. When we would hit Jesus with these it reduced his back to raw flesh. It litterly cut to the bone and they caused Jesus to lose a lot of blood that morning. I have seen many men die from these beatings..but not this man... after all that was not my orders, my orders were to just beat him right up to the point of death or unconsciousness.
I remember we mocked Jesus and made fun of him. I admit that as soldiers we didn't feel much sometimes, we were just following orders....They claimed that this Jesus fellow, was the king of the Jews, so we took and made a crown for him., We twisted up thorns and made them in the shape of a crown and then we jammed it on his head and twisted it down, those thorns pierced it his skin, this thing was not coming off. After the we bowed down and mocked him even more and and started to say"hail, king of the Jews" Some of spit him and punched him and just really mistreated him. We just wanted to humiliate him..
Now came time to lead him to the cross. In my estimation, when I had done this before it was pretty good advertisement for the roman government, I mean people really seemed to take notice, that why we made the route to the cross so long. We wanted as many people as possible to see it. as a type of warning if you will..we forced Jesus to carry his cross . I don't know how he did it, this crossbar had to weigh about 300 pounds...and we just left the town square where we beat him to the edge of death. I don't think he could have made it the entire way, ....but you see we had regulations and rules for everything, we made this guy Simon help Jesus carry the cross,...We didnt know him, but we picked him out of the crowd and forced him, He couldn't refuse it was the law. I am sure that coming to celebrate the passover, this was not at all what he expected to happen, I am sure it changed him.
once we arrived at golgotha, oh ....that means "place of a skull" our journey was about over,...It was just outside the city walls, some said the face of the rock looked like a skull....
As always there was some wine there, well it was sour wine mixed with gall ....it was kind of a pain numbing drink. Jesus was offered the drink, but he refused.