A Sacrifice of Love

 

“I don’t understand why they hate me so much.

Why am I so repulsive to them?

Why do I disgust them so?

 I healed so many. I fed thousands. And yet, none of them stood up for me. None of them have supported me during this. Instead, they either stay away or join the rest in mocking and abusing me.

 Am I so unworthy of their love?

They mock me because of what they see – a poor carpenter without name or status, who dares to claim to be the son of God. It is not my claim to be God’s son that angers them so, but the fact that their eyes tell them I am of little substance. If I had come in even half my splendor, and with just a handful of my angels, they would have revered and hailed me.

Why father?

 Why has our creation grown so prideful and wicked?

 Where did we go so wrong?

Did we not create them in our own image!?

Have we not always held them so dearly!?

How could they have turned so hateful?

And yet, my love for them remains the same.”

 

His mind goes back to the moment he healed that hapless and crestfallen woman. She was so desperate for help. She had tried everything, but nothing worked. All she had was the shame she experienced on a daily basis; afraid to speak with other people for fear of them being repulsed by her odour; forever fearful of being ridiculed. She had no-one else to turn to; no other choice but to put her faith in him.

He’ll never forget the moment she touched his cloak, filling his heart with unparalleled joy and fulfilment. Her eyes flickered as she fixed her gaze on the ground, too frightened to look up for fear of being abused or beaten. Only after he said her faith had healed her did she stop fearing for her life. She was not used to being addressed as a human being. Her body trembled as she experienced a love she had never felt before. As she bowed down to him in gratitude and adoration, he lifted her up, and in that moment their eyes finally met. You can tell so much about a person from the eyes – those deep and sullen brown eyes revealing an internal beauty that had long given way to fear, hopelessness and shame. Eyes that told a thousand stories of unrelenting grief and destitution. A smile so radiant in gratitude, and yet so sad and despondent as a consequence of the cruelty and loneliness of her life’s journey. Still shaking with a well of emotion, as tears streamed down her face, she held on to his hands for several seconds, for fear of never experiencing such love again, before the crowd separated them.

In those few minutes, Jesus felt the loneliness, fear, and torment of a thousand lives in just one person – an unfortunate woman who’s zest for life had slowly been eked out of her.

 

Below him is a woman whose grief and torment will never be equaled. As she watches her son on the cross, she can’t help but blame herself for his ordeal. ‘What kind of a mother fails to protect her son?’ she thinks to herself. ‘Why didn’t I just stop him? I should have raised him to live a normal life like everybody else. But I was too weak. I failed you, my son. I failed you’.

Never again will a mother plunge to such depths of despair. To watch an innocent son being tortured and crucified is a cruelty no woman or man should ever be put through.

Her strength diminishes with each passing second. She has suffered every moment of her son’s ordeal, as though the torture was inflicted on her own body, mind, and soul.

“I failed you my son. I failed you,” she mutters faintly, as her body grows weaker and weaker.

 

The agony of the cross is compounded by the sardonic laughter of demonic spirits – thousands and thousands of them – tormenting his very soul as they circle the cross over and over and over again; ceaseless in their teasing, and malicious in their joy of victory.
“Are you not the one who ordered us to enter those pigs??,” shout hundreds of them, over and over again, in full knowledge of the potential of their endless repetition to drive someone insane.

“But surely the great son of God can summon all of heaven’s angels to rescue you from this peril!!??” scream thousands more, one after another, in a constant cycle of never-ending echoes – with each repetition draining the life and sanity of Jesus all the more.

And then the laughter – wickedness, evil, hatred, and a sinister triumph that grows more and more suffocating as the decibels increase; each sneer pierces mind and soul with the brute ferocity of a blunt hack-saw chiseling through flesh and bone.

Will this torture ever end?

“Father….please….please father, I’m not sure I can take any more of this, “ mutters Jesus.

But there’s no answer. No respite from his tortuous ordeal, and no sign of help from above. His is a desperate plea to a father who has surely abandoned him.

“Why have you forsaken me father? Have I not done everything you asked?

 Your silence is scaring me ……have I failed? Was…..was this a mistake?”

 

In the midst of the thousands of demons that circle the cross is the arch enemy himself, reveling in his apparent victory – his hatred for the son of God as strong and as deep as ever before. As he looks on with that dark and sinister smile of a job well done, he can’t help but dwell on his former self – radiant in beauty and splendor – the morning star – God’s favourite archangel.

All he wanted was a little more glory – for the other angels to bow to him just like they do to Jesus. Was it really so wrong to desire the same worship and adoration that was bestowed on Jesus? He wasn’t asking for God’s throne or position. All he wanted was a little taste of the glory. But the so-called holy trinity wanted it all for themselves.

Now, at long last there’s hope. Only a matter of time before he seizes back his former glory. Before long, he will receive what is surely his right – the worship and adoration of the heavenly host.

“I offered you the world and you said no. All you had to do was bow down before me – just once,” says Lucifer, “just once,” he repeats louder.
“Are you so great, that you can never bow to anyone?? So humble and perfect that you thirst not for any kind of power or glory??’’

Forever the master of suggestion, he pauses for several seconds before proceeding.

‘’Well, look where your humility has got you, son of God!!

It seems your father has abandoned you.

No legions of angels to rescue you. He couldn’t even send one arch angel!’’

Now just inches away from Jesus, Lucifer stares with pitiful disgust at his so-called nemesis, longing for the ultimate satisfaction of a desperate plea for mercy.

‘’What kind of God abandons his own son??

How can a father be so cruel?

I don’t understand it.

Maybe you can explain.

Or do you think he might still save you? Who knows, maybe he will. After-all, there’s always hope, right?!”

Jesus, now consumed with agony, terror, and a peculiar wretched feeling that only rejection can bring, dares not look up. For if he does, he knows Lucifer will see the fear and doubt that presently plague his mind and soul. Instead, he keeps his head bowed, desperately hoping for Lucifer and his demons to leave him be.

As the last remnants of life drain from his body, with each breath more faint than the last, he senses the end is nigh. Although the searing pain that has engulfed his entire body from the moment those first lashes of the cat o’ nine tails rained down continues to torture him, he is now almost numb to it – accustomed to the endless blitz of physical and emotional agony. All that remains now is for that final breath to arrive.

As another tear drop slowly descends from his cheeks, he somehow manages to open his battered and weary eyes one final time. Inside the tear drop are Adam and Eve – radiant in joy and peace. He misses those days – when His father’s favourite creation resided in the splendour of Eden. The memory of the freedom they enjoyed, the depth of relationship, and the love that existed in that garden, strengthens his resolve once more, as the enormity and finality of what he’s achieved for mankind becomes all too clear. The restoration of that closeness, love, and freedom is now guaranteed. A time is coming when there will be no more grief, or pain, or hurt, or even death.

Breathing his last before his three-day sojourn to hell, a grim and bitterly cold darkness engulfs Him.

But he is no longer afraid.
He’s comforted in the knowledge that victory is now assured.

“It is finished,” he says.

 

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