Featured painting “Crucifixion,” created by Renato Guttuso (1911-87)
Every Good Friday, I have grown up listening to sermons about what happened on the cross, how Jesus was tortured, those nails, those thorns, the blood and those last words of Jesus on the cross. But this year and in the midst of the corona pandemic as a Pastor preparing sermon reflecting on the death of Christ, it just came to my mind that well for so many years it was always
Well this time I felt that my reflection should be about:
Jesus telling the world what the Cross is all about and why was he crucified on it?
Two points came to my head:
(1) The crucifixion on the cross was a method used by the Phoenicians for torturing and killing and it is said to be a horribly cruel method. Later it was adopted by the Romans.
“The Cross” is therefore a symbol reflect the systems, policies, acts, regulations, laws made by the powerful to dehumanise. To benefit the few and discard the many. It was to produce hatred, greed, inequality, communal hate, anything to maintain division amongst the people. We as humans have created, accepted and enacted these laws and policies as a country, state, society, community, even as religious groups. Even during this Corona pandemic, the powerful are demonising communities, apportioning blame rather than mourn the death which sees no race, religion or community.
(2). Jesus on the cross is the (torture) victim of those harsh imperial Roman laws and the communal Jewish order. Unjust laws continue to have the victims. Lives being tortured, being harassed, being imprisoned. The list can go on as if Jesus continues to be crucified.
On this Good Friday it is my prayer that we think about the “Cross and the Victims of the Cross” and reflect so as to create a transformative imagination for these unjust times.