Much of what Christ obediently submitted to as the price to purchase us from the grip of sin is displayed before you. “Who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.
The crown of thorns, (perhaps the Euphorbia milii, or Ziziphus spina Christi plant) bloomed during early April, the time of Christ torture and cruciﬁxion.
Though rarely seen in Paintings of Christ with the crown of thorns, it would have had ﬂowers bursting forth from the barbed vine, mockingly adding insult to injury to this ironic crown for the King of the Jews.
The sponge impaled on a hyssop branch was held to Christ’s lips after He exclaimed, “I thirst.”
A jar full of sour wine stood there, so they put a sponge full of the sour wine on a hyssop branch and held it to his mouth.
When Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, “It is ﬁnished,” and He bowed His head and gave up His spirit. (John 19:28-30)
This sponge is described by archeologists as a device comparable to our toilet paper. Simply stated Roman soldiers would clean themselves of their excrement by dipping a sponge pierced on a branch into a trough of running water. Does this Roman cruelty speak prophetically of Christ’s cruciﬁxion identifying Him as sin/unclean/ the ‘refuse’ of the world?