It’s the story of the Battle of Thermopylae fought between an alliance of Greek city-states led by Spartan King Leonidas and the Persian Empire of King Xerxes during the second Persian invasion of Greece. A Greek force of approx 7000 men marched to confront the Persian army of millions in the summer of 480BC. Vastly outnumbered, the Greeks held off the Persians by blocking the only road by which the massive Persian army could pass. After the second day of battle, aware that his force was being outflanked, King Leonidas dismissed most of the Greek army and remained with 300 Spartans to fight to the death.
The Battle of Thermopylae under the leadership of Leonidas has become a symbol of courage against overwhelming odds as one of history's most famous last stands.
We are drawn to heroic deaths, the way a hero dies makes their story epic. We honor those who courageously face death for a cause. We look to see if their death makes a difference.
In all of history, no death was more noble or courageous than the death of Jesus. And no death makes a bigger difference than His death on a cross.
The OT prophet Isaiah spoke of this 100s of years before it actually happened..."He was beaten, he was tortured, but he didn’t say a word. Like a lamb taken to be slaughtered, he took it all in silence. He died without a thought for his own welfare, beaten bloody for the sins of the people. Still, it’s what God had in mind all along. The plan was that he give himself as an offering for sin so that he’d see life come from it." (Isaiah 53:7-10 MSG)
I live because He died. That's epic and I honor Him.