“Joseph, come quickly.”
More pounding on the door.
“They are going to crucify him, Joseph. Hurry.”
“They can’t do that without a trial,” Joseph said, putting his robe on and walking toward the door.
“They had a trial last night.”
“How could they have a trial at night, with no witnesses?” Joseph opened the door.
“They found people, witnesses, who were willing to lie.”
“What is he guilty of, being the Son of God?”
“Yes, the high priest said he’s a blasphemer.”
“The Law says they cannot crucify him until a day has passed. There is still time.”
“No, Joseph, they are crucifying him now. The governor turned him over.”
Joseph stepped into the street and soon ran toward the governor’s headquarters. The streets overflowed with people shouting and screaming. Joseph feared for what was about to happen.
Pushing his way through the crowd, he was blocked by several Roman soldiers.
“No one gets closer than this,” one said.
“But I am a member of the Council.”
“We don’t care who you are. No closer.”
He caught a glimpse of Jesus struggling to walk, his back bloody and shredded from the lashes he received. Some spit on him. Others punched, kicked, and cursed him. Some cried. The crowd surged, pushing Joseph to the side. He fought his way around them and ran to the hill where the Romans held the executions. Golgotha, the skull.
It happened so fast. Jesus was lashed to the cross, eight-inch spikes driven through his hands and feet. Suspended in front of the crowd. Joseph paid little attention to the two criminals hanging on either side of Jesus. Tears stung his eyes. The lump in his throat made it hard for him to breathe.
He looked at those around him, many silent as they watched. “He is the Son of God,” Joseph muttered to himself. “How can they do this to him?” Recognizing a boy in the crowd, he beckoned him to come.
“Here, come here, my son.” The boy came close, and Joseph clutched his coat. “You know who I am?” He continued without hesitating. “Go tell Nicodemus to bring burial linens and spices. Quickly. Do you understand?”
“What’s happening?” Some screamed in fear. The sky darkened. For three hours, it was dark, and then . . . silence. All eyes looked at Jesus. “It is finished.”
Joseph, his robes dirty and torn, ran to Herod’s Palace. “Let me pass. I am Joseph of Arimathea, a member of the Sanhedrin, and I must speak to the governor.”
“Yes, take the body and prepare it for your burial. Do it now! I want this matter to end. Do you understand?” Pilate sneered through clenched teeth.
They took Jesus from the cross, wrapped his body in linen, and placed it in the garden tomb. A large stone covered the entrance Roman soldiers guarded the tomb.
“Mary, hurry, Mary, it’s very early, and we must get to the tomb while it’s still dark.”
“How will we move the stone?” Mary Magdalene asked, carrying her basket of spices.
“I don’t know. Let’s just get there and see. Wait, what’s this? The stone is moved. Who sits on top of it? And why are the Roman soldiers on the ground, cowering in fear?”
“Who are you, and why did you move the stone?” she asked.
“I moved it so you could see inside Mary. Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified, is not here. Look and see.”
“Where is he? What have you done with him?”
The angel said, “He’s alive, Mary. Go now and tell his disciples that He has Risen from the dead!”
Today is Friday. Good Friday. The day Jesus Christ was crucified for us. We are redeemed.