February 6, 2024
April 11, 2023 | Mitchell Mace
At this time of year, I tend to think more about the price our Lord God paid for all of us. Have any of you ever really thought about it? I don’t mean just a passing thought, or a few hours during and after church service. I mean a really in-depth thought process of it.
He faced betrayal. He faced scourging. He faced false testimony. He faced such tremendous pain, the likes of which we can only imagine, and yet still not come near to understanding.
Raising Lazarus from the grave, Jesus knew what He would soon endure as well in a matter of days, culminating with His own resurrection from the grave. Being betrayed by one of His own, He was about to be slapped, spit upon, chained, and tied to a post to be whipped. This whipping, this scourging, was to be done by Roman soldiers using their infamous whip also known as a “cat o’ nine tails.”
The Roman whip, or “flagrum”, or “flagellum”, was typically a whip of at least three leather straps attached to a handle. The more well-made flagrums would have up to nine of these straps. Hence, the name “cat o’ nine tails.” But a cat has claws. As such, these flagrums also had their own claws. In the ends of the straps would be knotted pieces of bone, glass, or metal.
The whole intent of the scourging was to inflict the most pain possible upon the human body. It was perhaps more painful than the crucifixion itself. His arms would have been tightly wrapped about the post, and bound. Stripped bare, His arms tied tight, His back would be pulled taut by the position. Then the scourging would begin.
The impact of the first strike would send pain throughout His human form. The tips would leave their marks, some welts, some cuts. As the next few strikes would land upon His skin, the small cuts would start to develop into tears and snags as the tips would rip the tissue of skin and muscle. Eventually, the strikes would reach His bone. By the end of the torturous ordeal, His skin would have been shredded, and bone would have been exposed.
The pain would be all He could feel. Every move would be painful.
I try every year, thinking upon this, to understand the level of the love our Lord had for all of us. I believe His example of the torture, the crucifixion, and the resurrection of our Lord is the best reason for all of us to follow Him. He is with us now. He is with us tomorrow. He is with us always, if we but follow Him by walking His path. He has defeated death itself. And He has a gift for us all.
That gift is eternal life in heaven above with Him, our Lord Jesus Christ.
God bless every one of you. At this time of year, let us remember that no matter how painful, or rough, or disastrous our lives may seem, our Lord Jesus suffered much, much more than we ever will. He paid our price for our sins so that all of us can have the opportunity to live forever with Him in heaven. All we have to do is learn His ways, and walk His path every day.
Have a blessed day.