Then Pilate took Jesus and flogged him. And the soldiers twisted together a crown of thorns and put it on his head and arrayed him in a purple robe. They came up to him, saying, “Hail, King of the Jews!” and struck him with their hands. –John 19:1-2
Frederick Leahy writes:
There he stood, his face bruised, swollen and bleeding, and that thorny crown upon his head. He was so alone, ‘friendless, forsaken, betrayed by all’. That crown symbolized what sinful man thinks of Christ. He was not to be taken seriously. He was only fit for a stage-play! They made him a carnival king and placed on him the stamp of derision. With this mock robe, reed sceptre and crown of thorns, he was made to look like a theatrical figure. Luther says that Christ was ‘numbered with the transgressors, crucified as a rebel, killed by His own people in supreme disgrace, and as the most abandoned of men’. Ah yes! ‘supreme disgrace’, the shameful crown of thorns woven by the hands of men and placed on the Saviour’s brow – man’s estimate of Christ.
Certainly behind that crown of thorns worn for us we see invincible patience and invincible love–a love that we can never understand, but which, by God’s grace, we may experience. Only unspeakable love, unquenchable love, divine love could wear that crown of thorns; and that is the wonder of it.
But now the brow that once wore the cruel crown of thorns is now adorned with the diadem of the universe, for all authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Christ. ‘We see Jesus…crowned’ (Heb. 2:9). ‘Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!’ (John 1:29).