A Disciple’s Diary, Entry 1 of 7

Note: For Easter Week, based on the canonical gospel accounts and, particularly John 20, my imagined journal entries in an equally imaginary recently discovered mid-first century manuscript, translated from the original Aramaic, of a previously unknown and yet unnamed follower of Jesus of Nazareth.

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It is the third day following the death…the murder of Jesus.

I, with my fellow disciples, my brothers and my sisters, the women who faithfully supported us out of their means these past three years, are gathered in this room.

The door, fashioned from acacia wood, hard as iron, is locked. Bolted and chained from within.

I sit on the floor. Hunched over. My back braced against the door.

Nobody can get in here. Nobody can get to us. I pray…

A small candle burns. Only one. We cannot risk anyone knowing we are here.

Looking around the room, I squint, straining to focus my eyes in the dim light. Only faintly can I see the faces of my friends. Swollen eyes, bloodshot from weeping. Cheeks, tear-stained, hollowed with grief, streaked with panicked sweat. We are afraid. No! We are terrified!

They killed Jesus! The political and religious powers, the strangest bedfellows, conspired to send Jesus to the slaughter, to hang from an accursed tree, according to God’s Law, a despicable, damnable way to die![1]

© 2021 PRA


[1] Biblical References: When someone is convicted of a crime punishable by death and is executed, and you hang him on a tree, his corpse must not remain all night upon the tree; you shall bury him that same day, for anyone hung on a tree is under God’s curse. You must not defile the land that the Lord your God is giving you for possession (Deuteronomy 21.22-23; my emphasis). Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us; for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree” (Galatians 3.13; my emphasis).

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