The Roman soldiers dragged him from the dungeon. They made him pick up a heavy wooden beam. When the lash of the whip cut across his back, he started walking. He and two others carried the instruments of their deaths up the hill. Today he was going to die. It was what he deserved because he was a thief.
From the top of the hill came the thud of hammers and screams of agony as nails tore through flesh. The crosses were lifted into place. His long torturous death had begun. He looked over at the other men hanging on their crosses. He knew both men. One of them deserved to be there because he was also a thief. However the other Man did not deserve to be there. He was there because the religious leaders hated Him.
Even in his agony he wondered, “what is wrong with these people?” Like snarling animals they ridiculed and abused the Man in the middle. At one time, he even joined them and hurled insults at the innocent Man. But as he watched and listened, he realized this Man was the Son of God. He repented and begged Jesus to remember him when He came into His kingdom.
He heard Jesus cry out to His Father. The sun went black and the earth shook. Jesus said, “It is finished!” and placed His spirit into His Father’s hands. Later the soldiers pierced the Savior’s side, but Jesus was already dead.
Later using a heavy club, the soldiers broke the legs of the thief. Unable to lift himself any longer he suffocated. But he died with peace in his heart. He had met the Savior and he knew on this day he would be with Jesus in Heaven. It was the best day of his life.
From Down Where The Pavement Ends