DRAMATIC CLIMAX OF A BRIEF SOJOURN -by Dr. F.X. Muttoo

(Taken from my book of poems - 2001) - Part 1

A. THE SCENARIO - A PRECURSOR TO THE CRUCIFIXION AND RESURRECTION

The sentence of DEATH UPON THE CROSS was given. The crowds went wild, as if driven into a

frenzy. Preparations were already on the way for the grand march to Calvary’s Hill - the place of

Skull. It would seem as though all hell broke loose, rejoicing over the glad news, that JESUS of

Nazareth was about to be put away, once and for all. This trouble-maker must now be destroyed,

that peace be restored.

Pilate and his wife, along with other members of the Society of Jurisprudence, were undoubtedly, lo

oking on at their approval rating just received -perhaps with some sort of regret over the decision; but

believing that the will of the people was duly exercised in accordance with the laws of the land. The

outrageous shouts of the multitude for the release of Barabbas, preceded their vociferous cry:

CRUCIFY HIM! CRUCIFY HIM! CRUCIFY HIM!

The noises of the violent mob erupted with anger, hatred, and bitterness. The Roman soldiers,

many of whom were riding, joined in the celebration over the news of His condemnation. The sounds

of the horses’ hooves on the unpaved streets, depicted the unexpressed divinely planned royal escort of

the confessed KING OF THE JEWS, as they mockingly demonstrated with the inscription INRI -

Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews, save thyself!

The entire city was in turmoil; men and women screaming with exuberance and jubilation over he

pronouncement of the verdict - Death upon the Son of God. The few believers who were still in hiding,

were terrified. Some followed afar off, for fear of being recognized. They shuddered and trembled

when they beheld His suffering - the scornful and abominable way in which their Lord was being

treated. Their hearts were breaking, as they knew that He was condemned to die an ignominious

death on the Cross, knowing that He had done nothing to deserve such a penalty.

The clanging of swords, spears and shields; the dancing on the streets by many in revelry; the jeers

and scornful laughter clearly depicted ignorance of what they had done. Just to see Him carry the ‘old

rugged cross,’ and be constantly flogged, was a delight for those who despised His teachings and

miracles that they heard and saw. ‘Kill the blasphemer,’ echoed throughout the streets, by the angry

mob.

The more they mocked, the greater the agony in the hearts of the believers, intensified. The true

followers lamented His pain and anguish. They were searching their hearts for short-comings, and w

hatever misgivings they might have had about Him, soon disappeared. ‘This must be the Christ, the

Messiah,’ they must have exclaimed, silently in their hearts. And rightly so!

Tradition tells us that He fell fourteen times, as He carried the cross, on His way to Golgotha’s Hill.

Surely, He was bruised, battered and beaten without mercy. Vengeance was unleashed upon Him. His

enemies were all ready to make Him a public spectacle of shame and disgrace to the Jewish people.

They were declaring that He was a charlatan and an impostor - pretending to be what He was not - the

God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. This was treason at its height, and it must be stopped and the

consequences must be meted out to this BLASPHEMER. What a total disregard and blatant rejection

of His Deity!

And upon the cross He was nailed; humanly manifesting the feel of torture and pain with each blow;

yet persevering and enduring such excruciating moments, for the sins of the world. The soldiers

were settled in their minds that they must do their duty in an unflinching manner. And they did! It was

an all out effort to humiliate this criminal, who claimed to be the King of the Jews. And the ordeal

began. Vinegar for water; spear in His side; and they spat upon Him. What a Saviour!

DRAMATIC CLIMAX OF A BRIEF SOJOURN - Part 11 - by Dr. Muttoo

It was a gruesome and heart-breaking scene to behold. Our Lord was now mounted on ‘the OLD

RUGGED CROSS.’ The atmosphere was one of darkness and grim sorrow. Nature itself began

grumbling over the shameful acts of profanity, and the tirade of threats and insults. The winds were

howling fiercely; dark ominous clouds blanketed the entire city, as in protest against the deliberate

efforts of the multitude, who, without remorse, unabashedly sought the death of the condemned

criminal - the One who had stirred up many to false teachings, that militated against the culture. The

deliberate intention to crush and wipe out the heresy of this arc-heretic, was the sole purpose of the

cruel and hate-filled Government soldiers.

Around the cross were heard shouts of joy, with ill intent, mixed with cries of anguish and pain. The

scenario was a clear revelation of God’s Will in action. Prophecy must be fulfilled - the Lamb must be

led to the slaughter, for the salvation of the world. “For He was wounded for our transgressions…”

He took our place, and died for us.

Jesus was now placed between two thieves, as the abominable outpouring of venomous language

spewed out of the mouths of His enemies. They continued to whip him, and jeering Him - the Son of

God, giving His life for their sins. The Saviour of the world must now experience the horror of death,

to win the battle against the prince of this world. And in innocence, He was despised and exposed to the

ridicule and taunts of a violent crowd. He was reviled and mocked with contempt, as though He had

committed such a crime, that deserved such a punishment. What a shame!

At the foot of the cross, they gambled for His garments - casting lots. His mother and other family

members, were witnessing all of the disgraceful and unbecoming acts of cruelty, to the One they

loved. Their grief was tempered with a glimpse that they might have caught while there - that truly He

was the Son of God. He did not deserve to be treated like that. However, God’s overwhelming Presence,

enabled them to withstand the apparent ignominy. They were resigned to the fact, that He must die to

save the world from sin. The cost of Redemption must be paid in full.

In the midst of their anguish, Our Lord, with buckets of Blood pouring down from His body, was heard

saying: Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do. Just imagine, such precious and

compassionate words coming from the mouth of the One being crucified! He could no longer see their

hatred and bitterness. He saw the barrenness and lostness of their souls. If it were just for them He

came to suffer and die, He would have done it without murmuring. LOVE was at its height as Our

Saviour continued to breathe out mercy toward His enemies. It was this LOVE that motivated Him to

leave His Throne of Glory above. He condescended to be born, and to be incarnated, to dwell among

man. Such Love, such wondrous Love!

Dying had now become a reality. Our Lord was now experiencing the agony of the price to be paid for

us. There was no turning back; no giving up; no surrender; no hate. It was pure, unsullied Love that

was manifested on that cross. The full -blown meaning of His life - the purpose for which He came,

was now evidenced in the glory of such a vicarious death. And still He had time to assure the dying

thief, of a place in Heaven for him. After His reconciliation with this form of suffering and death, He

transcended all human philosophies, and turned a sad and deplorable adventure into a fulfilling act of

Obedience to the Father, and Love for the world. And then He died!

The message went hurling into space, as the winds of VICTORY blew across the world - announcing:

CHRIST DIED FOR OUR SINS, AND FOR THE SINS OF THE WORLD. Hallelujah! Nature’s

revulsion was miraculously changed, and transformed into echoes of PRAISE and JUBILATION. ‘It is

finished.’ The devil has had a black- eye, as Jesus gave up the ghost. Heaven was now virtually

established on earth. The Lord has voluntarily given His life for the world that He loved so much! His

MISSION was now fulfilled. The impact of this transaction on Calvary, was an indication of greater

things to come. The soldiers could not focus any longer, as He demonstrated His majesty and Power

on the cross. The strife is o’er, the battle done! Praise the Lord!

DRAMATIC CLIMAX OF A BRIEF SOJOURN - Part 111 - by Dr. Muttoo

The atmosphere was now fully charged with an admixture of sorrow and joy. TRIUMPH characterized

such a dramatic conclusion on the cross of Calvary. The end ushered in new hope, and a new

beginning. The disciples were instantly recalling all that He had said to them about His Death, Burial

and Resurrection. It was just a matter of time when hope would be resuscitated. The One who had

uttered before the Sanhedrin, such blasphemous and heretical words, that He would one day destroy

the Temple and rebuild it three days, was about to annihilate all doubts and unbelief of the Hierarchy.

The angels of Heaven were getting ready to blow their trumpets, announcing Christ’s victory over the

grave. It was the birthing of EASTER, and the declaration to the world, and generations to come, that

the grave, could not hold Him; that JESUS CHRIST HAS RISEN; HE IS ALIVE!

On that glorious resurrection morning, the fact; the reality, that Jesus had broken the pangs of

death, and had now conquered the grave, resonated throughout the land. The disciples, still in hiding,

quickly embraced the message, that He was not there in the tomb, but that He was alive, indeed. They

were all injected with a new hope, and courage, that were translated into boldness, and fearlessness,

that would characterized their challenges and new adventures to follow. The grain of wheat that fell to

the ground, and proliferated into new life, had now become a reality.

The vision of His followers was now amplified. They came to grips with the startling fact, that their

lives were now in jeopardy. The incredible had taken place. Christ is alive, not dead, as so many

wished and thought. The trumped- up charges must now dissipate in the light of this new revelation.

The political and religious leaders, were at their wits end, especially, the Sadducees. Their Theology

was shattered, but still they adamantly wallowed in their unbelief. They continued to associate with

those who were out to wipe out the followers of this Risen Christ.

For forty days, Our Lord made His appearances to His bewildered disciples. Thomas struggled with

the natural mind - doubting the actual resurrection, only to be convinced how wrong he was. He was

greatly embarrassed, as he made his confession, that Jesus was Lord, and God. And what a new

dimension of living he embraced! The scared and well- composed disciples, knew that it was not too

far, in the distant future, that they would have to risk it all, to openly declare, that Jesus Christ is

alive. They were in preparation for the consequences that must follow such a brave and chivalrous

stand for their Lord, and they were getting ready to pay that price.

When they saw Him ascending up into Heaven, and heard what the angels said: that He should so

come in like manner as they beheld Him going, it made all the difference in the world. Peoples’ lives

were changing right across the board, because they saw for themselves this supernatural and mind-

boggling phenomenon of His ascension. It was high time for the world to take notice, that He is

returning again. He said: And I will come again to receive you unto myself. So, whether you like or

not, the inevitable must happen as divinely ordained. Christ is returning soon for His Bride the Blood-

washed Church.

Ten days after His Ascension, the holy Spirit was poured out upon His faithful disciples, who were

told by Jesus before He left this world, to wait for the anointing and resurrection power that would fall

upon them. And He fulfilled His promise! On this special day - the Day of Pentecost, the Christian

church was born. They received an electrifying spiritual experience that was never before received.

They were now filled with the Holy Spirit, as Peter preached his non-compromising and powerful

sermon, as thousands were converted - they accepted Christ as their Lord and Saviour. This fearless

band of witnesses was now ready to proclaim that Jesus died for the sins of the world, and that He was

buried, rose again from the dead, and that He is alive forevermore.

HALLELUJAH, WHAT A SAVIOUR!