The crucifixion of Jesus Christ is the pivotal point in Christianity where Jesus gave up his own life for the sins of the world. He did this as a symbolic sacrifice to God so that Christians would no longer have to bring sacrifices to the Lord in order to be saved from an eternity in hell. By giving up his life as the eternal sacrifice, people today simply have to accept Jesus as their Lord and confess their sins to him by asking for forgiveness and he automatically becomes that final sacrifice for that person and the gap between that person and heaven is bridged. He is the way to heaven and an eternity with God.
In Christianity, the crucifixion itself is not the only part of the story but the entire week leading up to it is celebrated and acknowledged in Christianity today. The following is an outline of the events that led to the crucifixion of Jesus Christ.
The triumphal entry. About a week before he was crucified Jesus arrived in Jerusalem. The people were so excited to see him and to hear his words that they formed an impromptu parade to welcome him. The people even laid their coats on the ground for him to walk on as a sign of respect. They put Jesus on a borrowed donkey and had him ride in as part of this celebration.
A week of teaching. That entire week Jesus spent with his disciples preaching and teaching them and others about being a believer and about what was to come in the following days and weeks.
The Last Supper. The week culminated in the Passover meal, which became the Last Supper for Jesus and his disciples together. During this meal Jesus told them about his betrayer and spoke to them about his impending death and what was to happen.
Jesus predicts Peter’s denial. The disciples were distraught that anyone could betray Jesus and they began to tell them of their devotion and love and how they would never do such a thing. At this time Jesus told Peter that no matter how much he loved him he would deny him that very night before the cock would crow three times.
Prayer in the garden. Jesus went with his closest disciples to the Garden of Gethsemane after the Last Supper to pray. His heart was heavy with the thought of his impending death. He spent time praying for himself, all believers and his disciples.
Jesus is arrested. While in the garden praying, Jesus was arrested by the soldiers. Peter tried to stand up and fight for him and cut off the ear of a soldier. At that moment Jesus healed the soldier’s ear and explained to Peter that violence was not the solution.
Peter denies Jesus. While Jesus was being tried and consequently beaten, several people recognized Peter as having been with him. Each time someone questioned him about it Peter denied that he even knew Jesus let alone ever spent time with him.
Pilate gave Jesus over to be crucified. Pilate believed that Jesus was a good man and had done nothing wrong but he could not do anything about it. He tried to get the people to let Jesus go or at best agree not to kill him but they would not hear of it. So, he washed his hands of the whole thing and handed him over for crucifixion.
Barabbas is released. In that day it was customary at the Feast of Unleavened Bread for a prisoner to be released. Pilate gave the people a choice between letting Jesus go and letting Barabbas go. Barabbas was a harden criminal and a murder who was extremely dangerous so Pilate felt confident that the people would choose Jesus. However, in their anger, they could not see what they were about to do and they asked for Barabbas to be released and for Jesus to be killed.
Jesus is crucified. At this time Jesus was handed over and led up the hill to Golgotha to be killed. He was beaten and forced to carry his own cross up the hill. He was given a crown of thorns to wear on his head as a mockery of his being the King of the Jews. Jesus was then laid upon the cross, his hands and feet nailed to the cross and it was there that he died.