Crown of Thorns
After his trial, the soldiers made a crown of thorns and placed it on Jesus’ head.
Matthew 27:29 - and then (they) twisted together a crown of thorns and set it on his head. They put a staff in his right hand. Then they knelt in front of him and mocked him. “Hail, king of the Jews!” they said.
The Shirt and the Dice
The soldiers who conducted the executions were entitled to divide up the prisoners’ belongings. Rather than tear the shirt so that each got a piece, they played dice for it.
Matthew 27:35 - When they had crucified him, they divided up his clothes by casting lots.
Whilst Jesus was hanging on the cross they offered him sour wine to drink from a sponge.
Matthew 27:48 -
Immediately one of them ran and got a sponge. He filled it with wine vinegar, put it on a staff, and offered it to Jesus to drink.
The initials INRI represent the Latin inscription (Iēsus Nazarēnus, Rēx Iūdaeōrum), which in English translates to "Jesus the Nazarene, King of the Jews",
Matthew 27:37 –
Above his head they placed the written charge against him: this is Jesus, the King of the Jews.
Hammer and nails
At the place of execution, Jesus was stripped of his clothes, and nailed to a cross with a nail through each wrist and then one nail through both feet.
The Scourge and the basin.
It was the custom at the time of the Passover for the Romans to release one of the prisoners in an act of clemency. The Roman Governor, Pilate offered to release Jesus, but the crowd just cried louder for his death.
Matthew 27:24/26 - When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but that instead an uproar was starting, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd. “I am innocent of this man’s blood,” he said.
… Then he released Barabbas to them. But he had Jesus flogged, and handed him over to be crucified.
The Pilum (spear)
At the end of the day, the soldiers came to break the legs of the prisoners (so that they would die more quickly) but they found that Jesus had already died.
John 19:33-34 - But when they came to Jesus and found that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. Instead, one of the soldiers pierced Jesus’ side with a spear, bringing a sudden flow of blood and water.
Easter Sunday Butterflies
The image will change on Easter Sunday when the butterflies will be shown breaking out of the crown of thorns.
Known for its lightness, the fluttering of its wings, and especially its metamorphosis from a caterpillar into something more beautiful and powerful, the butterfly symbol dates from ancient times and is found in religions and faith groups all around the world and can symbolise the soul, reincarnation, resurrection, and femininity.
In Christianity, the butterfly symbolizes the resurrection of Christ and of believers and is seen especially around Easter celebrations and Christian funerals.
1 Corinthians 15:52b - For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed.
The caterpillar disappears into a cocoon, appearing dead, just as Christ was laid in the tomb after the crucifixion. Later, it emerges, having transformed into something more beautiful and powerful than it was.
1 Corinthians 15:42-44 - So will it be with the resurrection of the dead. The body that is sown is perishable, it is raised imperishable; it is sown in dishonour, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power; it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body.