A Panorama of the Passion

Pt 1: The Death Day of Jesus Christ

Crucifix-of-the-Sun-out-for-site1-214x300 Millions believe that all of human history hinges on a killing that occurred outside the walls of Jerusalem, nearly two thousand years ago. Jesus of Nazareth entered the city on a donkey one day and left carrying a cross. This was an apparent victory for the Pharisees, an incomprehensible tragedy for his disciples, and a brutal spectacle for the multitudes. It was also a great disappointment to Jews clinging to conventional expectations of the Messiah. Their prophets had foretold a Son of David who would liberate the nation of Israel, restoring her to earthly supremacy. Yet there was Jesus — the supposed “King of the Jews” — hanging powerless on a blood-drenched tree.

According to the Evangelists, the wandering rabbi saw it coming. Three chapters of John’s Gospel are devoted to Jesus’ reflection upon his impending demise. It was all part of a master plan—one antithetical to mundane sensibilities. As he told Pilate: “My kingdom is not of this world.” (Jn 18:36)

Crucifix-of-the-Sun-for-site-copy-232x300Death by crucifixion was commonplace in ancient societies — from Babylon to the British Isles — but that made the sight of dying criminals hanging on trees no less horrifying. Contemporary observers record numerous variations upon this sadistic art. The ancient Romans considered it to be the absolute worst form of execution — above both decapitation and being burned alive. It was therefore a sentence reserved for the lowest classes, the so-called servile supplicium — the “slaves’ punishment.” Stripped, shamed, beaten, and hung out to dry — only an extreme masochist would call this a winner’s fate.

Yet Jesus’ crucifixion came to be hailed as the most magnificent moment of the greatest story ever told…

Read the rest at disinformation

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