People who surrounded Jesus before, during and after his death came from all facets of life.
The roles played were important. Some having direct influence on his death, others played distant occupiers of the day. Then of course were his immediate family and closest friends.
As the Bible teaches us about each one, there are many questions. As time passes and as we grow, we become different characters just as some of these did. God gave us the stories of each one to help us relate in our everyday sufferings and victories.
Peter-The Backstabbing Rock
Mary Magdalene The Sinful Saint
Judas Iscariot-Officer of Betrayal
Pontius Pilate-Author of the Crucifixion
Roman Soldiers-Casting Lots
The Two Thieves-The Least of the Least
The Tomb Guards-The Binding Liars
Joseph of Arimathea-The Sanhedrin Disciple
Thomas-The Doubtful Believer
The Disciples-The Transformed Twelve
Peter wept bitterly after the 3rd rooster crowed.
Mary Magdalene became a “celebrated disciple” and the first to see Jesus after he arose.
We all know what happened to Judas Iscariot.
The Roman soldiers wanted his robe.
The two thieves were considered useless in society.
The Tomb guards witnessed one of the greatest miracles recorded and yet denied it to save themselves from death.
Joseph of Arimathea was an honorable counselor who disagreed with the crucifixion of Jesus.
Thomas simply didn’t believe the whole Jesus theory.
The Disciples were ordinary men who God used to become extraordinary.
How did those who didn’t believe react later if and when they discovered the truth of what they had done?
How did they live with themselves?
Did they wake up and look in the proverbial mirror every morning and go about their lives as normal?
Or were they stricken with grief over their sin and iniquities so much so their lives were beaten down with guilt?
Were they chosen by God to play those evil roles of sending the Savior of the world to his death?
To be truthful I see myself in most of their characters. Unfortunately I am Peter who denied him; Thomas who doubted him and Mary Magdalene who was filled with evil.
I see myself questioning his guilt or innocence as Pontius Pilate did.
Maybe I wasn’t like the Roman soldiers who wanted his robe; but maybe I would have. After all, in a way Jesus had become a celebrity.
I can see myself in Joseph of Arimethea who had compassion and wanted to give him a burial tomb especially since I didn’t try to stop his crucifixion in the first place.
But more than any I see myself as Judas.
Years ago I would have sold Jesus out for a few coins. I would have crept behind the ideals he taught and gone behind his back with a desire to bring him down.
I would have buried my conscience to deny his truth to save my reputation from being linked with one who declared himself the Son of God.
The story is too unbelievable; too reckless in the sense of guarding one’s honor and prominence.
The story is too bizarre for one who never heard it before to grasp it outright.
Jesus’ life, death and resurrection cannot be mirrored by any movie or tale of mystery.
Yet, it is what it is.
A truth to behold; a fact of history and a relationship given to mankind in a scene of horror that leads to love.
Unraveling the characters that may have been born to play these memorable parts is a definition of who we are. They were people like us only marked for their transgressions for the whole world to see.
We may never know how Judas Iscariot may have lived his life had he not taken it.
I took my end of my rope to the cross and left it there.
As far as I know it is still lying on the ground beneath the feet of Jesus.
And that is where it belongs.
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