Wednesday, March 17, 2021

“When they came to the place that is called The Skull, they crucified Jesus there with the criminals, one on his right and one on his left.” (Luke 23:33)

There is no image quite as visceral as the one portrayed in the eleventh station. Nails piercing Jesus’ flesh, his hands and his feet, to attach him to his cross.

Those hands. Those hands of Jesus, which healed and blessed and broke bread, are now subjected to this. Those feet. Those feet of Jesus, which walked on water and marched through the desert and carried him from town to town, are now no longer free to walk.

And let us not forget, steeped in irony, these hands are the hands of a carpenter. These hands grew up, intimately aware of the role nails have. These feet stood beside his father Joseph, as Jesus learned how nails and wood can build things up.

But the nails and wood that we see before us today are not the kind that build up. These nails and this wood are only the kind that can tear down. They are used to tear down Jesus’ humanity. They are used to tear down the hopes of the multitudes who put their trust in Jesus. They are used to tear down those who the powers that be decided had risen too high.

And if it were not for God and the power of the resurrection the story would end here with the nails and this wood winning the day.  But for those of us who know that this is just another stop along the journey, no matter how savage the scene before us is, we wait for those hands and feet to rise again.

Peace in Christ,

Pr. Dan Joyner Miller