Darkness began its drumroll.
On Friday, darkness began its drumroll. Jesus was betrayed, denied and abandoned by friends, religious leaders and loud crowds. Soldiers slapped, punched, spit on, beat, condemned, and mocked him for thinking he was a king.
Jesus’ followers, friends and family alike stood by, watching the man who represented their only hope and their wildest dreams be put to death. The desperation, the loneliness, the abandonment, the anger, the horror – it all began to feel real.
And Jesus stayed there on the cross, not because nails held him there but because of his love for his Father and his love for us.
Three nails and three hours later, he cried that it was finished. And hanging on that tree, Jesus tasted the weight of sin with arms wide open.
The dust of darkness began to settle.
On Saturday, yawning between Friday and Sunday, there was nothing to do but wait.
And wonder what on earth is going on.
And remember what on earth went on, just yesterday.
And let the silence speak volumes, as it almost always does.
And fear that cruel tyranny had triumphed, that injustice and evil were victors, and darkness had silenced Love.
Then on the third…
Early Sunday morning, thunderous power, love and beauty broke the silence. What everyone thought was the end, became the beginning.
The man people thought was wrapped in grave clothes, was walking through town, breathing and talking and…very much alive!
Most could hardly believe their eyes. Mary thought Jesus was a gardener; two of his disciples mistook him for a stranger; and his friend Thomas refused to believe without touching for himself Jesus’ pierced hands and side.
And no wonder! They thought that evil had claimed the final word.
On Friday, Jesus said “It was finished.”
But then, on the third day, he came back to life and declared that the victory coursing through his veins, the new home he was building, the massive love that held him on the cross – we were invited into it, too.
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