The Passion Of The Christ
Commentary by: Bill the Butcher
This would normally be a Sunday article, but I write for TLB on Mondays and Wednesdays. However, being on the road this week has taxed me, and I waxed religiosity. For those of you who appreciate ideas from I-40, thanks, and bless you. Anyone who doesn’t? Well, I’ll keep it clean. I hope your mama runs out from under the porch and bites you when you get home!
Look at this picture. Unassuming. Railroad ties sold for landscaping at Tractor Supply in Dover, Tennessee. Although these Tennessee boys are pretty stout, it usually takes two to load these up. They are treated with creosote. That’s a chemical that keeps the bugs out. In times past, pitch or tar may have been used. But again, an unassuming sight. That is until you put one on the shoulders of a man who was beaten all night and whipped thirty-nine times with a whip capped off with razor blades. Thirty-nine was the limit thought to be the upper end of what a man could stand. Forty or more would cause death from shock or bleeding out. This was not a scientific or medical theory. It was just Roman procedure used in the process of killing the accused on the cross.
And why did this happen? Roman records for it, if recorded at all, would reflect the usual dispensing of a usual common criminal. The Procurator of Judea at the time was Pontius Pilate. Opinions since that time have described him as everything from a weak puppet of the High Priest of the Temple in Jerusalem to a homicidal sociopath. He was somewhere in the middle.
He was a Roman military officer. With aspirations that made him wonder why he’d been assigned to a nowhere post like Jerusalem. There used to be trees in Israel. In 1948, when the Jews returned to their homeland there were few, if any trees. Guys like Pilate made forests of crosses out of the trees that Jesus and his disciples walked through. And they bade those forests grow. It took those Jews one thousand eight hundred and seventy-seven years to return because they weren’t sure if the Romans were gone. But Israel was and is a nowhere place. God planned it that way. No oil, no trees, the weather sucked, and everyone thought it was “The Promised Land!” And the entire world is waiting for the end of the world to come from a property smaller than Disney Land! Praise the Lord!
So what led a highly intelligent, self-actuated man like Jesus to the cross? If you are a non-believer, you might make the case that He never existed. If you believe, then He died for your sins. Ask yourself. Why would anyone do something like that. I mean, this isn’t throwing yourself on a grenade to save the squad. This is all day, all night, and bleeding out after three hours on a cross. Jesus of Nazareth really believed that He was paying for our sins. He died because we could not and could never control our base urges. Be it a shot of whiskey or a woman. If you are a believer, Christ’s answer is always, “I got this.” And the price was as high as that cross on Golgotha because we are task masters at screwing up. Most of us can’t survive a paper cut. None of us can survive life. Hell ain’t hot enough.
The wood of the cross is hard to accept. Hard to reason. Hard to ignore. Many are called, but few are chosen. But it’s always our choice. The biggest miracle of creation is our freedom of choice. Cats don’t have that. Dolphins don’t have that. Chimpanzees, no matter how many basketballs they can shoot through a hoop, they still don’t have that. Only we have that. Jesus offers the free gift of salvation and all we have to do is say, “Yes.” Yet volumes have been written about ways and reasons to say, “No.” Saint Thomas Aquinas wrote, “All that I have written is as straw when compared to the wood of the cross.”
Once accepted, the wood of the cross defies all logic. If rejected no fancy sermon or endless rhetoric will sway. Yet, it is still our choice. We did the crime, He did the time and there is no safe place except at the foot of the cross.
No rhetoric is needed. Just look at those railroad ties. Lift one. Just try. Careful. Don’t get a splinter. You wouldn’t want an infection. Might mess up your manicure. Try and lift it. If you can just consider the weight. That’s the weight of your sins! They are real. You don’t need Ten Commandments. Your moral code was installed at birth by God.
The Liberty Beacon Project is now expanding at a near exponential rate, and for this we are grateful and excited! But we must also be practical. For 7 years we have not asked for any donations, and have built this project with our own funds as we grew. We are now experiencing ever increasing growing pains due to the large number of websites and projects we represent. So we have just installed donation buttons on our websites and ask that you consider this when you visit them. Nothing is too small. We thank you for all your support and your considerations … (TLB)
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