This must have felt like the LONGEST day ever for some and one of the darkest for others. Jesus is in the tomb while creation holds its breath.
I like the song from Carmen, Sunday’s On The Way. I feel like it reflects the religious leaders’ attitudes even more than Satan’s. I could easily insert Caiaphas’ name here instead of Satan. Caiaphas KNEW of Jesus words concerning His resurrection. Caiaphas had also heard about and seen the wonders Jesus had done during His ministry. How many of those had Caiaphas told himself, “NOT possible!” about? And yet, each of those “NOT possible” events were proven to be true. So Caiaphas EXPECTED something to happen. He thought Jesus’ followers would make it APPEAR as if He had risen. If he believed Jesus’ words, certainly His disciples believed them too and would do whatever they had to do to make it so. Caiaphas was worrying.
Caiaphas couldn’t have been farther from the truth. Jesus disciples were stuck in their despair. They had NO plans of moving Him from the tomb. They weren’t even thinking beyond the ‘here and now’. They were held up together in a house, mourning the loss of their Savior. “Why didn’t He stop this? Surely He had the power to come down off the cross. I don’t understand.” The day before, the women had gathered and prepared spices for anointing Jesus’ body. They too were waiting. I doubt His words concerning His resurrection were even registering in ANY of their minds at this moment. Jesus’ disciples were wallowing.
A third ‘area’ was waiting with anticipation. That ‘area’ was Heaven. God knew the EXACT moment when all would be complete. He knew the work His Son was doing in the depths of Hell. The angels watched their Creator and waited for His signal. They were like runners waiting in the blocks for the starter pistol to fire. They KNEW not to jump the gun. God had this timed out to the millisecond. When He said “Go” the angel keeping watch would BOUNCE the heavy stone away from the entrance of the tomb like he was flicking a fly off himself. He kept running through the preparations in his mind as he was poised to act. Heaven waited.
This time is NOT idle for Jesus. He is setting the prisoners free. He is wrestling with Satan and stripping the very keys of death and hell from Satan’s hand. Every sin that had been laid on Jesus is falling off. Every chain is breaking to pieces. And He is leading EVERYONE who has followed the Lord to eternal freedom with God. He is emptying Abraham’s Bosom. Jesus worked.
Get ready EVERYONE for God has started the countdown! ALL will know the truth of Jesus’ words… SOON.
This isn’t the end of ALL waiting. We are in a waiting period too. We are waiting on Jesus’ final return. Which camp are you in? Are you worried like Caiaphas? Are you wallowing because of all the pain you see in the world? Are you waiting as a runner in the blocks? Or are you working, getting as much done in the time you have as possible? Personally, I want to be in the last group. I want to be hard at work. But sometimes I slip into the other groups for a spell. I’ll worry because things aren’t going as I think they should. Sometimes I’ll wallow when I see the messes I’ve made for myself. Sometimes I NEED to wait for the right moment; when God ‘fires the pistol’. Right now though I’m in the ‘waiting with anticipation’ mode to remember and commemorate that great moment. The moment my Savior steps out of the grave! “Is it time yet?”
Lord Jesus, I’m SO glad that I KNOW the end of this story! I don’t have to wonder like the religious leaders or even Your disciples. I KNOW You walked out of that tomb and gave ME life! Did You breathe a sigh of relief when it was all accomplished? Not because You had any doubts about how everything would turn out but because You got a moment to rest. But You didn’t even rest long. You went right back to work. But I’m getting ahead of Your story. Let me just sit with the anticipation for now.
Help me with the anticipation for Your final return too. Don’t let me lose sight of the FACT that You ARE coming back and that I have work to do in the meantime. Let me serve with gladness as each moment passes on the way to that AMAZING moment that is still to come. I’ll hold on because I KNOW that You are faithful. And You are holding on too because You KNOW You can trust Your Father to know EXACTLY when to let You step down onto earth again.
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