‘God says, “You wonder how long my love will last? Find your answer on a splintered cross, on a craggy hill. That’s Me you see up there, your Maker, your God, nail-stabbed and bleeding. Covered in spit and sin-soaked. That’s your sin I’m feeling. That’s your death I’m dying. That’s your resurrection I’m living. That’s how much I love you.”‘* Max Lucado
Did Max really say ‘spit’? [re-checking quote] Yeah that’s what he said. ‘Covered in spit and sin-soaked!’
I wonder, if the soldiers had known their degrading act was going to be documented for all humanity to witness, would they have toned it down a notch? Oh, as Max elaborates, no one holds them accountable for crucifying Jesus. It was their job, their duty.
But spitting on a beaten and dying man?
Take a moment and read the account (Matthew 27:26-31). They scourged Jesus and were then ordered to crucify Him. Had they done just this, they could forever claim to have followed their orders. But they did much more than duty required.
They found it necessary to humiliate and degrade their prey before driving home those issued nails. They needed to tear at the soul of an already basted physical body.
I’d love to continue harping on the treacherous deeds of these men, but Max won’t let me. See, he only allowed me to catch a glimpse of the actions of these men long enough to realize I was peering into a mirror.
No, I’m not quite old enough to have been one of the soldiers at the cross. But I’m guilty of just what they did. While I don’t recall ever spitting on another, I can assure you that I’ve gossiped, and slandered, and arrogantly rolled my eyes in an effort to tear down another for the sake of lifting myself up.
And should I look for a loophole with the thought of, “I would never spit on Jesus,” I’m quickly reminded, “In as much as you’ve done it unto one of these, the least of my brethren, you’ve done it unto Me.” Matthew 25
There’s good news though! Guess what there’s no record of in Scripture? There’s no record of the spit being wiped off the face of Jesus. He carried their spit to the cross and was crucified with it dried on His skin.
“The sinless One took on the face of a sinner so that we sinners could take on the face of a saint.”*
*Quotes from He Chose the Nails, by Max Lucado, chapter two.
**A note regarding the title: “Does Your Llama Spit,” is the question my wife and I are asked (a thousand times) every time the ‘little people‘ perform at a petting zoo or nativity scene. [talk about really scraping the bottom of the barrel for a title]