Now Simon from Cyrene, the father of Alexander and Rufus was on his way home. Coming in from his business out in the country he wanted to get home in time for the celebration of the Feast. The streets were packed people were pushing and shoving each other to see what was happening in front of them. Simon pushed his way through he really was in a hurry and wanted to get out of the crowd as soon as possible. Before he knew it one of the centurions grabbed him and pulled him into the group.
‘Pick up the cross and carry it.’ The Centurion instructed Simon.
‘No, I am not going to do that what will my friends say if they see me carrying a cross.’ Simon protested as he pulled away from the Centurion.
‘You will take up this cross and carry it for Jesus. It isn’t open for decision.’ The Centurion said and pushed Simon.
Simon had no choice in the matter and picked up the heavy cross. They reached Golgotha the Place of the Skull.
Simon stood and watch as the centurion hammered the six inch nails into Jesus hands and feet. It must have been excruciating as Jesus turned pail each time one of the nails pierced his flesh. The blood had dried on his back but as they pushed Jesus down on the cross you could see the blood trickle down the wood of the rugged cross. Finally they pushed the cross up right and as it fell into the whole Jesus body fell into place and a rush of air escaped in anguish as he breathed.
Jesus clothes were being divided between the Soldiers as they took lots on each item. It was the third hour when they crucified Jesus. A notice was placed for all to see which read ‘THE KING OF THE JEWS.’ Two robbers where crucified with Jesus on the same day, one to the right of Jesus and one to the left of Jesus.
As I stood watching this my heart sank into my feet and watched the people who passed by; they were insulting Jesus and shaking their heads while saying ‘So! You who are going to destroy the temple and build it in three days, come down from the cross and save yourself.’
The Chief Priests and the teachers of the law mocked Jesus among themselves. ‘He saved others,’ they said, ‘but he can’t save himself! Let this Christ, the King of Israel, come down now from the cross, that we may see and believe.’
The two crucified with Jesus also heaped insults on him.
It was at the sixth hour when it became pitch black, so dark it frightened me. And in the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?” which means, “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?”
When some of those standing near heard this, they said, “Listen, he’s calling Elijah.”
One man ran, filled a sponge with wine vinegar, put it on a stick, and offered it to Jesus to drink. “Now leave him alone. Let’s see if Elijah comes to take him down,” he said.
With a loud cry, Jesus breathed his last.
The curtain of the temple was torn into tow from top to bottom. And when they centurion, who stood there in front of Jesus, heard his cry and saw how he died, he said, “Surely this man was the Son of God!”
Some women were watching from a distance. Among them were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James the younger and of Joses, and Salome. In Galilee these women had followed him and cared for his needs. Many other women who had come up with him to Jerusalem were also there.