Saturday, April 19, 2014

Death, Saturday and Insanity: Easter Musings

After reading a friend's Instagram post this morning, I find my thoughts continually coming back to what it must have been like to be the disciples and Jesus' followers on this Saturday after His death but before the resurrection. I am so very glad that I live in a time when the Holy Spirit is present to give us discernment and wisdom, and we have the Word of God, with the entire story of redemption, to read and study and understand. 

What was it like when they didn't fully comprehend why Jesus had come and what it all meant? How dark that day must have been! 

Yes, the disciples had heard Him pretty much explain exactly what was going to happen about how He was would have to lay down His life and that He would rise again, blah, blah, blah, but they had no idea what that really meant or entailed. Even after the resurrection, they didn't quite get the purpose for all of it. It's easy to look back on the disciples and feel like they were really dense, but I'm positive that any one of us in their shoes would not have acted differently.

But on that Saturday, what were they thinking? Their Messiah died!! And not only that but He died a horrible, humiliating death only reserved for the worst of criminals. When He was arrested, all the disciples ran away in fear of being associated with Him. Peter denied that he even knew who Jesus was. Not once, but three times.

Death is death. It is so final. It is the end that everyone experiences. In our minds, it is the normal progression of life, even when it's surprising or happens when we think it shouldn't. It still is that way things are. It's the natural way and something we understand to be true.

He was dead! They had seen a few people raised from the dead at Jesus' hand (who, by the way, still died again eventually), but now that Jesus was dead, that amazingness would seem to be pretty much over. 
And how often even now, do we, as believers in Christ, see God do something in our lives or someone else's but then really struggle with having faith the next time the same situation comes up? Anyone? Raising my hand right now. 

That day would have been awful. Horrible. Second worst day ever.

But then the next day. Oh, the next day. 

The disciples believed that Jesus was their Messiah, but He was also God. I'm not sure they comprehended that quite yet. No one rises from the dead. That proved it. God.

I think about how nutso we all must sound to those who do not know the story of Jesus or just don't believe it. We are all like, "yay for Resurrection Sunday!" And non-Christians are like, "ok you crazies." Haha! We totally sound crazy. Jesus sounded crazy. If He wasn't God, then all that stuff He said definitely should have gotten Him sent straight to the loony bin in a straight jacket. Can you imagine if someone today got up and said, "all authority in heaven and earth has been given to me (Matt 28:18)"? We would all run away screaming for help.

But those of you running, just for fun, do a google search of John chapter 18 and read through chapter 20 (search in the ESV-that's a readable version without any thees and thous). Super interesting story that made for a really intense, sad movie. 

What if it actually happened?