|Visiting the Old City
"The Way of the Cross"
After our three previous stops this day we were rapidly losing daylight. However, Shep decided we had enough time to visit the first couple of stops on the Via Dolorosa (The Way of Sorrow or The Way of the Cross). We entered the Old City through Herod's Gate and made stops at Station #1 (where Jesus was sentenced to death) and Station #2 (where the Roman soldiers crowned our Lord with the Crown of Thorns and played a brutal game with His suffering. We went on to visit the Church of St Anne where we sang together several hyms to demonstrate the amazing echo acoustics of the church. Finally, we paid a short visit to the Pool of Bethesda where Jesus healed the sick man that had been unable to walk for 38 years.
John 19: 1-11 The discourse between Pontius Pilate,
Jesus, and the Mob
Then Pilate took Jesus and had him scourged. And the soldiers wove a crown out of thorns and placed it on his head, and clothed him in a purple cloak, and they came to him and said, "Hail, King of the Jews!" And they struck him repeatedly. Once more Pilate went out and said to them, "Look, I am bringing him out to you, so that you may know that I find no guilt in him." So Jesus came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple cloak. And he said to them, "Behold the man!" when the chief priests and the guards saw him they cried out, "Crucify him, crucify him!" Pilate said to them, "Take him yourselves and crucify him. I find no guilt in him." The Jews answered, "We have a law, and according to that law he ought to die, because he made himself the Son of God." Now when Pilate heard this statement, he became even more afraid, and went back into the praetorium and said to Jesus, "Where are you from?" Jesus did not answer him. So Pilate said to him, "Do you not speak to me?" Do you not know that I have power to release you and I have power to crucify you?" Jesus answered, "You would have no power over me if it had not been given to you from above. For this reason the one who handed me over to you has the greater sin."
|Ecco Homo Arch & The Stone Pavement
The first several stations of the Way of the Cross begin in the area of the Ecco Homo Arch "Behold the Man". The large pavement of stones beneath the Church of the Sisters of Zion Convent date back to the time of Christ. The etchings on the stones include a scorpion, a crown, a letter B lying on its side, and a drawing of a life line which led to a sword. The scorpion represents the 10th Roman Legion and the symbol B on its side a symbol for King. There is apparently very strong evidence that this is the very site where the soldiers played their wicked games at the expense of our precious Lord.
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