OCR Interpretation


The day book. (Chicago, Ill.) 1911-1917, April 02, 1915, NOON EDITION, Image 6

Image and text provided by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, Urbana, IL

Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045487/1915-04-02/ed-1/seq-6/

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comes before him, like the scenes of
a panorama.
He is back again in his happy boy
hood, in a home of love, with father
and mother and brothers and sisters.
He'remembers his boyish ambitions
and thinks of how" sadly he has
missed them all. He recalls his first
wrong step and thinks of how differ
ent life might have been but for that.
Then his heart-beat quickens as he
thinks of Rachel, the sweetheart of
his bosom and the mother of his chil
dren. And so Barabbas sits and thinks,
as scene after scene from the olden
time comes into his mind, of when
child after child came into his home,
until at last he awakes from his rev
erie with a start. A cold damp gath
ers on his brow, and there is a pang
in his heart as he thinks of the sor
row his misconduct has brought upon
his home. No chance to -warn his
boy and girls against the snares into
which his own feet fell. No chance to
say a word of encouragement to Ra
chel or to Stephen who had grown
up to be such a brave lad and who
had been like a right arm to his moth
er, for so it was whispered to him in
his prison.
No, there is no hope for any -of
this, and realizing it in all its bitter
ness, the doomed man almost longs
for the summons the summons that
will send hini to the cross! But sud
denly, as he sits there in his dungeon,
with the weight of his fetters and his
troubles so heavy upon him, he hears
the great shout of a multitude crying
out his own name "Barabbas! Ba
rabbas! Barabbas!" What can it
mean? What new thing has hap
pened ? He can think of but one pos
sible explanation the people are
clamoring for his death.
He shamble out with the bitter
ness of death upon him and the cen
turion says: "Basabbas, you are now
free! Another has taken your place
and will die in your stead." He is
thrust out into the great court. And
bo the bewildered man, with a heart
wild with joy, presses on toward his
home, and, as he turns the last cor
ner, he hears glad shouts and there
are the wife and children all running
toward him, for they have but just
heard that he is free. A moment lat
er the heart of Barabbas almost stops
beating as he sees the man who has
taken his place led out into the upper
portico where Pilate stands, and
there is Jesus, with His hands bound,
the blood streaming down His pale
face, from the crown of thorns on
His brow, and His flesh clotted from
the awful scourging he has just re
ceived! And Pilate, pointing to Him,
say: "Behold the man!"
At that sight the heart of Barab
bas becomes like that of a little child
and his eyes are a fountain of tears.
The wickedness and bitterness that
filled him so long are gone and he
loves the Man who stands before him
more than he ever loved his own soul.
Stretching out his hands toward Him
he cries: "Master! Master! I love you!
I love you for taking my place!" And
I can see the face of Jesus brighten
with a look of ineffable peace as He
lifts His eyes and seems to look into
the very soul -ofthe robber captain,
wtiose gratitude chqers Him as He
goes to the cross.
Then they led Jesus away to cru
cify Him, and you know the awful
story of how nobody -had any mercy
on Him! Of how He fell under the
weight of the heavy cross He was
compelled to bear, until at last they
came to Calvary, where, without a
thought of mercy, they drove the
cruel spikes through his quivering
flesh, and. as Barabbas, with Stephen,
stood and watched it all from the
nearest point they could gain, you
can imagine what must have been
the state of his heart as Ee kept say
ing over and over: "Stephen. He is
dying for me! He is dying for me! He
has taken my place and I am free. I
want you to remember Him, boy. He
gave your father back to you. You
must love His name and honor His
memory."
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