Ellen G. White Writings

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A Call to Stand Apart, Page 51

they cast lots.” And that is what the soldiers did. Meanwhile, standing near the cross of Jesus were his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing beside her, he said to his mother, “Woman, here is your son.” Then he said to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” And from that hour the disciple took her into his own home. After this, when Jesus knew that all was now finished, he said (in order to fulfill the scripture), “I am thirsty.” A jar full of sour wine was standing there. So they put a sponge full of the wine on a branch of hyssop and held it to his mouth. When Jesus had received the wine, he said, “It is finished.” Then he bowed his head and gave up his spirit. John 19:13-30.

As news of Jesus’ fate spread through Jerusalem, a vast crowd gathered and followed Him along the way to Calvary. When He passed the gate into Pilate’s court, they placed on His bruised and bleeding shoulder the cross that had been intended for Barabbas. But the weight of a cross was more than Jesus could carry. He hadn’t eaten since the Passover supper with His disciples on Thursday evening. Then He had battled with Satan in Gethsemane, suffered the betrayal of Judas, watched His disciples desert Him and flee, stood before Annas, Caiaphas, Pilate, and Herod, and twice endured lashes on His back. When they put the cross on His shoulder, He collapsed. It was more than any human being could bear.

Mary, in the company of John, saw her Son collapse. She longed to take His wounded head in her hands and wipe the brow that had once rested on her breast. But she could not.

At that moment a Cyrenian, Simon, arriving from the country, found himself surrounded by the crowd. He heard the mocking cry, “Make way for the King of the Jews!” Amazed at the unbelievable cruelty and hostility, he stopped to express compassion for Jesus. The soldiers seized him, placed Jesus’ cross on his shoulders, and forced him to carry

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