Summary: The crucifixion must have been devastating to Jesus' followers and the resurrection…well…that must have been scary and exhilarating at the same time. And it all happened so fast! It didn’t give them much time to process in their minds what was happening.
Read 1 Corinthians 15:3-8
So many of us are overly comfortable with the story of Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection that we have a hard time understanding what it was like for those who experienced it as it was happening. How would you have liked to have been one of Jesus’ disciples or followers? The crucifixion must have been devastating to them and the resurrection…well…that must have been scary and exhilarating at the same time. And it all happened so fast! It didn’t give them much time to process in their minds what was happening.
Let’s pretend that we are moving through those three days with an unknown follower of the Master. Try to experience what he is experiencing. Can you see him in your mind?
Where have they gone? Where are the people? They were here listening, just yesterday. Listening to the Teacher. They called Him Master. Where are they now?
What are those noises? It sounds like shouting – awful shouting, and whips. What is that horrible noise? I must find out what is happening over there. I must get closer. I’ll watch from here.
The people…lots and lots of people shouting and sneering. What are they sneering at? It…it looks like a man. Oh, no…the Master…the man they called Master. What are they doing to Him? Closer, I must get closer…How could they? How COULD they? He has blood dripping…dripping all down His face. Why don’t they stop that horrible sneering? I can’t stand it! What’s wrong with those people? He taught such beautiful things. He taught us love. He taught us caring. He taught us humility. He taught us God. Why? Why are they doing that to Him? I can’t bear to watch.
Footsteps. They’re coming closer. I must hide. There must be many of them. I’ll watch from here.
A cross. Oh, please, no! Not a cross…not for Him! Why? All He did was sit on a stone and teach us. All He did was love us. All He did was heal us. All He did was make us know happiness. All He did was love…
He is so weary. He is so…He’s fallen! Someone – help Him! Help Him! Thank goodness someone’s helping.
I’ll follow and watch. I’ll follow behind the others. Maybe they won’t notice me. Maybe they won’t know I listened. Maybe they won’t know I believed Him. I must find out why all this is happening.
The guards. They are so rough and cruel. They are always shouting. They are always beating Him.
Not nails – not NAILS! No. I can’t stand the pounding. Stop it! Somebody stop the pounding!
Blood on the ground – why? Why have they done this? Those guards are so cruel. They continue to shout at Him. Don’t they know he is suffering? Don’t they know how much He must hurt? All He did was love us. That’s all. Why don’t they understand? All he did was love us.
(Off stage) “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.”
Father – forgive them? Forgive them? HOW CAN HE SAY THAT? How can He say that when they’ve done this to Him? Nails and yelling and blood and a cross! How can He SAY that?
Oh, it is so hot in the sun. The people are pushing. The soldiers are shouting. Those women are crying. I want to cry too. I’m scared. I don’t understand. Why are they doing this to Him? WHY – when all He did was love?
It’s getting dark. Have I been here that long? It can’t be that late, but it’s getting dark. Some of the people are leaving now. I guess it’s not much of a show any more since it getting hard to see. The soldiers are joking and laughing. How can they do such a thing at a time like this? It’s really getting dark. Why is all this happening?
It’s quiet now. Only a few women sit and weep by themselves. The soldiers still laugh and talk, but not like before. It’s quieter now.
(Off stage) “I thirst.”
Oh, give Him something to make Him sleep….anything…He suffers so…Someone is offering Him something. He won’t take it. Why won’t He take it?
It’s dark. It is cold now. The soldiers aren’t laughing anymore. What is happening?
(Off stage) “It is finished.”
What IS happening? The ground is moving – shaking? I must find a place to hide. I’m so scared. I’ll hide here. I’m shaking. Oh, I’m so cold and scared. Why did they hang Him there? Why did they make Him bleed? Why did He say “Forgive them”? Why is the ground shaking? And it is so dark! The soldiers are all quiet.
The earth is no longer moving. He’s not moving… He’s not agonizing anymore. He must be dead by now. He’s been there so long. Take Him down, please take Him down.