As they went out, they found a man of Cyrene, Simon by name. They compelled this man to carry his cross. And when they came to a place called Golgotha (which means Place of a Skull), they offered him wine to drink, mixed with gall, but when he tasted it, he would not drink it. And when they had crucified him, they divided his garments among them by casting lots. Then they sat down and kept watch over him there. And over his head they put the charge against him, which read, “This is Jesus, the King of the Jews.” Then two robbers were crucified with him, one on the right and one on the left. – Matthew 27:32-38 (NLT)
Jesus was so badly beaten by his flogging that he wasn’t able to carry the 30- to 40-pound cross on his own. His beating also shortened his life expectancy on the cross. There is no way to get around the brutality that Jesus endured at the hands of the Romans. He did not deserve any of it. He was without sin (Hebrews 4:15, 1 Peter 1:19) and yet he endured all of this agony so that you might have eternal life in his name.
How does this make you feel? Think of the best gifts you have received, how does this compare? Is the gift Jesus gave you on the cross one you think about as much as the other great gifts in your life?