They offered him wine drugged with myrrh, but he refused it. Then the soldiers nailed him to the cross. They divided his clothes and threw dice to decide who would get each piece. It was nine o’clock in the morning when they crucified him.
Can you see the expression that the artist has put in Jesus' eyes? I see pain, sorrow, love, and a resolute facing what was coming.
See, from his head, his hands, his feet,
Sorrow and love flow mingled down.
Did e'er such love and sorrow meet?
Or thorns compose so rich a crown?
Sorrow and love; love and sorrow: the two things mingle in our minds. From Jesus' head, his hands, his feet, come both things, opposites united in a kind of glorious and terrible synthesis. Sorrow and love, says one line. Then love and sorrow. Which comes first? Which comes second? The wonder of the passion of Jesus Christ is something we can never fully understand but we can rejoice--and accept--just as we try to accept the thorns becoming "so rich a crown."
Lord, have mercy!
Christ, have mercy!
Wash away my sin and pardon my transgression.
Make me whole again,
Have mercy on me.