January 15, 2021

Stations of the Cross: The Eleventh Station

A Series for Holy Week.
Thanks to Jeff Dunn for leading us in these meditations.

Jesus is nailed to the cross


Carrying the cross by himself, he went to the place called Place of the Skull (in Hebrew, Golgotha). There they nailed him to the cross.

John 19: 17, 18 NLT


And why did it have to be
A heavy cross He was made to bear?
And why did they nail His feet and hands?
His love would have held Him there.
It was a cross for on a cross
A thief was supposed to pay.
And Jesus had come into the world
To steal every heart away–
Yes, Jesus had come into the world
To steal every heart away.

Michael Card, Why?

Gaze upon the cross today. Let it be the focal point of all of your thoughts. Jesus, the Son of God, has his feet and his hands nailed with heavy spikes into wood. The pain is beyond what a human can stand for very long. Gaze at those nails hold his flesh. Then think about this: Were those nails really necessary, or would his love for you and me have held him there? Is that really true? If it is, what do you now think of the crucifixion: Was it the execution of a religious rebel who got out of hand, or was it the greatest act of love ever shown in space and time?

Oh Jesus, I can only weep and moan at the pain you endured on the cross with nails driven through your hands and feet, holding you against gravity on rough wood. The pain, the shame, the separation from your beloved Father. All this was mine to bear, to endure. I earned it, and yet you bore it for me. Truly, Jesus, your incredible love for me was stronger than the nails that day. Your love would have held you there. You paid on the cross like a thief. And a thief you are, Jesus. You have stolen my heart. I am yours.

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.


  1. Ekstasis says

    Any verses and thoughts on the idea that his physical pain was miniscule in relation to his suffering being “forsaken” and “becoming sin for us”?

    • Quixotequest says

      I think you have a point. The anguish of being forsaken and separated from His God was likely the greatest of torture because He knew connectedness. But that anguish is harder to imagine than physical pain, perhaps, unless one has been forsaken by a loved one. I don’t know. I’ve experienced that hell. And I still struggle to compare that to His suffering.

      But I know that for some it’s easy to slip into seeing more the symbolism of the Easter narrative rather than contemplate the tangible, grounding reality of His pain.

      I’m not sure it matters which is the greater pain. It’s pain He bore for us. And part of our Good News is that it really happened.

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