The Difference a Day Makes

30 March 2015

It was now about noon, and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon, for the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit” When he had said this, he breathed his last.

Luke 23:44-46.

A weekend is normally a time of rest, the highlight of our week. Then again, it can be the longest two days in the world. For the disciples, no weekend could have been longer or more painful.

crucifiction-legsThe Bible tells us that Jesus was crucified, and his disciples had fled. Jesus was dead, Judas hanged himself, and the Pharisees were congratulating themselves. It’s not hard to imagine the pain in them all- Jesus had told the disciples that they would flee, and that one of them would betray him. I think all of them would have felt like they had.

It would be easy for us to trivialise the days leading up to Jesus’ resurrection, since we know that everything was going to be okay. The disciples didn’t know that, and in that situation I would have lost faith too- it looked hopeless. We know however, that their Sunday did eventually come.

I have been thinking about the resurrection, that the disciples were so unaware of. Here in the 21st century, where a lot of Christians have access to Bibles, webcasts, sermons on YouTube and commentaries galore- why do we sometimes still feel so lost? Why are we downcast, devastated by our own sins and feeling separated from our Father?

Now, I’m talking about Bible believing Christians. It’s been me. I have known that Jesus was crucified for my sins, and still felt alone and afraid. While Jesus was punished for me, I still held on to the guilt from my sin. My failure was far more real to me than His glorious defeat of sin.

I know how easy it has been for me to listen to the accusations of the enemy, and identify far more with the Crucifixion than the Resurrection- where I couldn’t see anything in me change, and assumed I was a hopeless case. A time, in short, like darkness had fallen.

The Easter story reminds me that as Sunday follows Friday, the Resurrection followed the Crucifixion. We have the Cross to tell us what price was paid for us- but we have a resurrection, a Sunday to tell us that it’s over. Jesus won- the enemy has no right to accuse us!

Christianity has an old saying- “It’s Friday, but Sunday’s coming.” I will slightly amend that statement- It’s not Friday anymore, our Sunday has already come!

I’m not waiting for another payment for my sins; Christ paid that for once and for all. I don’t have to remain at the tomb, He’s not there anymore- He rose. He WON.

“Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples: ‘He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him.” Matthew 28:5-6

Cate Stephens

 

 

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