Tenth Station: Jesus Is Stripped of His Clothes
When the soldiers had crucified Jesus, they took his clothes and divided them into four parts, one for each soldier. They also took his tunic; now the tunic was seamless, woven in one piece from the top. So they said to one another, “Let us not tear it, but cast lots for it to see who will get it.” This was to fulfill what the scripture says, “They divided my clothes among themselves, and for my clothing they cast lots.”
For anyone, being stripped is a terrible thing. A faithful Jew in the time of Jesus follows modesty laws and does not expose his or her body. To be naked in public is a terrible humiliation. For Jesus, the physical pain is only part of his torture. The absolute helplessness of being stretched on the cross, exposed to all while he is in agony, is yet to come on this appalling day.
The crowd rejects him, now seeing him humiliated, as less than fully human.
Meanwhile, the soldiers, engaged in a normal days work, take the spoils as is their right on the job.
Packs of dogs close me in, and gangs of evildoers circle around me;
They pierce my hands and my feet; I can count all my bones.
They stare and gloat over me; they divide my garments among them;
they cast lots for my clothing.
Be not far away, O Lord, you are my strength; hasten to help me.
- • those who are shamed and degraded, for battered spouses and beaten children, for the victims of rape, betrayal, and other humiliations.
- • those who expose, shame, and humiliate others by word or action that they might have their eyes opened and their hearts exposed.
- • yourself, for when you are shamed and abused, that you might remember Jesus during his worst humiliation and find healing, so that you might live without fear and without shame.