Jesus Crucified

Jesus crucified, for us he suffered for us he died, on the cross

So goes the song from my child hood.  We only ever sung the words on Good Friday, the one day of the year that christians everywhere take the day off and think about how much jesus has done for them.

The suffering of jesus on the cross, his dying and then his resurrection is the pivot point for their christian faith.  Without this great sacrifice christianity means nothing.  There would be no point.


St Mary's - Hamilton

You see, god so loved the world that he sent his only son that we may live.  What a marvellous thing to do.

Crucifixion is no easy thing.  Certainly not for jesus, you see, he was whipped and beaten, made to carry his own wooden cross, had his clothes ripped from him, was nailed to the cross, was stabbed and had his legs broken.

They strung him up and it was all over within the day, a matter of hours.

What a great sacrifice he made for us.

Then, I think about those others who suffer and die.  Not for sins, but because of the brutality of others. Those who are tortured physically, mentally, sexually.  Their suffering can go on for many years.  The torment may lead to their death by their own hands, and sometimes death by those that abuse them.

Think about those that are sick.  They might have cancer and suffer for years, in great pain.  They have treatment that prolongs their life, but the cost is great suffering as the illness finally overcomes them and they die a pain-killer drugged death.  Nobody stabs them or breaks their legs to get it over with in a couple of hours.

After the horrible death of jesus, guess what, he came back to life! Isn’t that simply incredible.  After his hours of suffering, he sprang back to life, all healed.  Great sacrifice god, well done you!

So great was the sacrifice that we now build temples in honour of jesus.  We keep a red light burning all the time1 when we have some of his body kept in a ciborium2 with a veil over it hidden away in the tabernacle3. It’s important to bring gifts of flowers and money to the altar, and you should also be sure to have a statue of jesus with his heart hanging out of his shirt.


Jesus with his heart

If you are almost as famous as jesus and you die of cancer, somebody might make a statue of you, or name a bridge after you.  Sometimes a foundation might be set up.  If you’re really lucky you’ll get both a building and a foundation.

What you won’t get is brought back to life.  Even though your suffering has been thousands of times worse than crucifixion, through no choice of your own, you’ll die and that’s the end of it. Two generations and nobody will know you.  Just visit any cemetery and see how many people you actually know.

So, here we are at easter, there’s much talk from bishops and priests about love, how great it is that their god sent his only son (who was also himself), suffered, died and rose again.  They’ll do this dressed up in fine linen, living in luxurious accommodations, having more gold than you and I can dream of, and the only suffering they have to put up with is a few words thrown their way by rude people who are hellbent on persecuting them.

That’s suffering for you.

  1. It’s called a sanctuary lamp, and it’s suppose to stay alight all the time SOURCE
  2. A vessel for holding the communion host SOURCE
  3. A locked box for keeping the ciborium in SOURCE
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