There once was a man who promised so much. He came as a conquering king; he said that he would give life. That he was the way. He spoke of a new kingdom, and spoke against the powers and authorities that had set themselves up. He appealed to the crowd, and they all loved him, especially the children.
But then - he was captured and taken by the very ones he was supposed to save them from. He was judged by the religious powers to be speaking incredible blasphemy against their God, and so was sent to be punished. He was brought before the people, beaten and bruised. This was supposed to be their king - and he had failed them.
"Crucify!" The first voice, one of the religious leaders called. "Crucify!" Cried another. Soon, the call was taken up by more, and more. "Crucify! Crucify! Crucify!" This was not their king. Their king would not do this to them. He was a betrayer, a traitor, a liar. He had no power. He was weak. Eventually, after much protest, the authorities caved in. He was whipped, again and again, until he could barely stand. He was made to walk to his place of execution - Golgotha, or The Place Of The Skull. They tried to get him to carry the crossbeam, but he could not bear the weight after the torture he had already endured. They forced someone from the crowd to carry it for him, and then resumed the long walk.
They stripped him naked, and laid him down on the cross, binding his arms into position. Then one took a nail, and a great hammer, pressing it against his right hand; and with a mighty series of hits, nailed his hand to the wood. He proceeded to do the same for the other hand. Then, moving down to his feet, he placed one on top of the other; then, withdrawing an incredibly long and wicked-looking nail, and with a great blow, nailed both of his feet to the cross.
Slowly, the cross was brought upright. Two others were on either side, both petty criminals. Many came and spat at him, or laughed and jeered as they watched him die slowly, and painfully. He deserved this, for his lies and betrayal. For what he said he would do, that he did not. The man cried out now and then, but never with anything that made much sense. At some point in the afternoon, though, he said this - "It is finished." And then he died. As all men do.
....but this was no ordinary man. And this story is not yet finished. For this was Jesus, son of Joseph, from Nazareth. And it was only the first day. Friday. And now, we wait....