I Saw Him Killing a Man

A number of years ago I was studying at the library located on the campus of Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona. When I studied in the library, I preferred to sit in certain chair and at a certain table, if they were available. I sat there because it was the best view of a large, oil painting of the crucifixion of Christ. The rather large painting depicted a close up view of a kneeling, Roman Soldier pounding a bloodied spike into Christ’s right wrist.

You could see the entire soldier (dressed in full uniform) kneeling and the upper part of the cross and Jesus. I had always been drawn to the picture, despite morbidity. However; Roman crucifixion was morbid. The art piece was well painted and lifelike. It always made me think about my Saviors death on Calvary.

One day, while I was attempting to study, a man came with some paints and brushes and began doing “touch up” on the painting. It was the artist, who painted it, but when he turned his face in my direction, I was shocked! As he turn his face towards me to remove a brush from nearby table I realized that his face was that of the soldier. It was him! It was him! The man who helped kill Jesus! The artist’s face was the same face of the Roman Soldier who was pounding the spike into Jesus’ bloodied wrist in the painting. I was shocked!

After doing several double-takes, I went and ask him why he had put himself in the painting. He smiled, “It was everyone’s sin that put Jesus on the cross, including mine. We all drove in the spikes. We all put him to death, but it was love that held Him there, not the spikes.”

3 thoughts on “I Saw Him Killing a Man”

  1. WOW, what a powerful story! The faith of the painter is very apparent. To put ones face on a Roman soldier crucifying Jesus shows the conviction that he has.

  2. LORD, help us to realize what it was that You did for us. Help us to have fellowship with Your suffering, that we would not take our salvation for granted. Help us to know Your love, that while we are sinners, Christ died for us! Hallelu Ya!

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