Mis-named or Perfectly Named?
Yesterday, in the mis-named/perfectly named, Good Friday, we reminded ourselves of the price of our redemption. Today we remind ourselves of the utter loneliness and suffering of the early disciples. On Saturday, their vision of the greatness of the sacrifice was obscured by the pain of their loss, and un-ameliorated by the glory of what would happen on Sunday morning. Sometimes, this day between the horror of Friday and the glory of Sunday is called THE SILENT SATURDAY.
I wonder if it was silent.
I suspect it was punctuated by spasms of sorrow as the memories of the last 18 hours of the Savior’s life came rushing back into the consciousness of the disciples. Peter perhaps wept himself to exhaustion as he remembered his predicted and fulfilled denials (John 18:15-18). Thomas, who seemed to be the one who knew all too well how it was going to end, was not proud of being right (John 11:16). Andrew, probably conflicted over his own pain and loss and compassion for his brother Peter who had failed so miserably to stand on the bravado of his commitment at the last supper (John 13:36-38).
All of them, save John had run and hid when the Romans, with clubs and the traitorous Judas, came to arrest the Redeemer of Israel (John 18:1-11). And with that common failure, all of the disciples had the same guilt as Peter. One can betray actively or passively, with or without words. Judas’ betrayal was active. The disciples betrayal was passive. Peter’s, with words. The others in the former band of 12 appointed disciples, was without words but just as much a failure.
So I doubt that it was silent. It might have been surly at times.
I know that I for one, have a tendency to be surly when I am reminded of my failures. It doesn’t matter if it is my wife, or the devil, or my own memories, or the Holy Spirit, I am not likely to be friendly or gentle when my faults are pointed out. I’m more likely to be sour and abrupt and reclusive. That’s why I need a Savior.
And I suspect that tears were many on the Saturday between horror and glory. Certainly among the women, and most especially, in Mary, His mother, tears were many. Watching your children suffer is not easy for any mother, but imagine being Mary and watching your first born son go through the brutal tortures of the cross! Her sorrow was perhaps deeper than any other despite all of the angels and dreams and treasured memories of God’s visitations (Matthew 1:18-25, 2:1-12; Luke 2:19, 51).
It is good for us to reflect on these things, these hours of what it must have been like so that we can more fully appreciate the wonder of our redemption, and what God was doing in the events of passion week. Paul put it this way, “God demonstrated His love for us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). Maybe we can only appreciate that in light of the resurrection but surely meditating on the suffering of Christ for us is a protection against taking God’s love for granted. Not a perfect protection, but one that passion week reminds us of every year.
So may your meditations today provide you with some moments that will better prepare you for the glorious celebrations that will take place in so many churches around the globe tomorrow. Peace.
Silence doesn’t mean He isn’t working. Remember that.
One thought on “A Saturday Meditation Between Horror and Glory”
I suspect that they might have been surly, but as I suggested in my meditation on Saturday, the silence they heard as they yearned to hear the voice of Jesus may have overwhelmed them