We all know that Jesus was crucified under Pontius Pilate, died, and rose on the third day. And, most of us know that before his crucifixion, Jesus foretold of his humiliating and brutal death. But, he also said that if we want to become his follower, a Christian, we also must take up our cross. But, what did he mean by this? Surely, he’s not asking us to disrupt our modern, comfortable lives? Surely, he doesn’t want us to be responsible Christians outside of Sunday mornings? And, surely, he doesn’t expect us to change our way of life in obedience to the Father?
- Crucifixion in the ancient world was a humiliating and painful way to die. After being stripped naked and hung on the cross, it could take days to die from exhaustion or asphyxiation.
- The Romans crucified non-citizens as a way to keep subjected peoples in check and it wasn’t rare. The Romans crucified thousands of people outside the city walls as a warning for all to see.
- Crucifixion functioned similarly to the way lynchings functioned in the American south.
- Knowing all of this, Jesus was still obedient to the Father and continued to walk the Way to crucifixion. He was one under authority, responsible for carrying out his mission.
- He asks us to also take up our crosses and follow him—to walk the Way … there’s no “Sunday only” Christianity being promoted here.
- And, as difficult as taking up the cross may be, it’s the Way that leads to transfiguration.
What is The Way?
Fr. Dustin Lyon explores scripture to rediscover Christianity so that we can walk in the Way of the Lord.