Yesterday was Good Friday.
Tomorrow is Resurrection Sunday.
I’ve heard some call today Holy Saturday. While we don’t actually know exactly how the days line up on the calendar, today, at least, symbolizes when Jesus’ body lay in the tomb.
It was the Sabbath. The disciples were resting. But they were afraid. Their unconquerable Savior lay dead. Not only did it feel as though their hope was extinguished, but they feared for the suffering that might come as a result of being his disciple.
Then there was guilt, most notably in Peter and Judas. Imagine the agony they both must be feeling.
Peter who loved his Savior, who proclaimed with all his heart that Jesus was indeed the Messiah, the Christ. Peter, who in fear, vehemently denied having anything to do with his Savior. Peter who jumped out of the boat into the water and swam all the way to shore as soon he realized that it was indeed his Savior, risen again, at the shore. Peter who repented, who found hope, who was forgiven. Peter, the rock upon whom Jesus said he would build His church.
“So when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put his outer garment on (for he was stripped for work), and threw himself into the sea. But the other disciples came in the little boat, for they were not far from the land, but about one hundred yards away, dragging the net full of fish.”
“I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it.”
Then there was Judas, who stole money from the disciple’s money-bag to use for himself. Judas, who pretended to be zealous for the poor, but only for selfish purposes. Judas, who betrayed the Lord with a kiss, never realizing that it was the Father’s will that Jesus die for our sins so we could have forgiveness. Judas, who was filed with such guilt and despair that when he realized what he had done, he killed himself.
“Then when Judas, who had betrayed Him, saw that He had been condemned, he felt remorse and returned the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders, saying, “I have sinned by betraying innocent blood.” But they said, “What is that to us? See to that yourself!” And he threw the pieces of silver into the temple sanctuary and departed; and he went away and hanged himself.”
Neither of them saw the end. They didn’t understand what was coming. They didn’t remember Jesus’ words.
But when Judas realized Jesus had been condemned, he didn’t wait on the Lord, he didn’t trust His mercy. Instead, Judas was overwhelmed by guilt and gave up on his very life. And that’s the end of his story.
I can imagine what Peter might have also been going through. Peter had vowed that he would follow his Lord unto death, yet he had denied him. Thrice. And after this, it says, “…he went out and wept bitterly” (Matt 26:75). And now, on top of this, his Lord, the very Son of God, was dead. What was this supposed to mean?
Yet he waited. And on the Sabbath, he rested. Even if it wasn’t for very long, I can imagine it felt like a very long time for Peter to wait. I can imagine the guilt, the sadness, the sorrow at losing the best friend you ever had.
But it wasn’t for long.
Because Jesus rose again.
He couldn’t be dead long.
And then after showing himself to the disciples and instructing them, Jesus ascended to heaven, to be with the Father.
And now we wait.
We wait for our Lord to come again. But this time, we know so much more. We know, we understand that He really is coming again, that He is not dead.
The disciples saw Jesus dead and thought they had lost their hope.
But we know that Jesus is risen, is alive, even though we cannot see Him. And someday we will see Him. Someday our hope will be fulfilled beyond what we could ever imagine.Someday.
So yes, we wait.
And as we wait, we reflect on all the Lord has done for us, and all the Lord keeps doing. We read the old story again, the best story of all, where a sinless man who was God himself, died to save us from our sins. We won’t forget, and we’ll share it on and on.
As we wait, we praise Him. We worship Him, we serve Him, we seek Him.
And one day, when this story melts into eternity, we’ll finally see Him and fall to our knees in worship.
Have a blessed evening and a blessed Resurrection Sunday.
He is risen!!!!!
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.”
-1 Peters 1:3-5 (NASB)
*All scripture quotations are from the NASB translation unless otherwise noted.