Good morning everyone:
Busy day ahead? Are there Easter dinner plans to finalize, eggs to color, maybe a little yard cleanup to take care of? Have you ever thought about what Jesus’ followers did the day before the first Easter? There was a time crunch to take the Lord’s body down from the cross and place it in the tomb before sunset on Friday, the start of the Sabbath. Scripture records that after seeing where Jesus’ body was laid, the women went home, prepared spices and perfumes. “But they rested on the Sabbath in obedience to the commandment” (Lk. 23:56).
According to Old Testament law, no work was to be done on the Sabbath. The word itself means “rest.” It was a God-designed time to refresh the body, but especially to find rest for the soul in hearing God’s Word of promise and praising His love and faithfulness toward undeserving sinners. On this pre-Easter Sabbath, you can imagine the thoughts of Jesus’ followers consumed with all that had happened the day before at Golgotha. The prayer of many may have been, “Lord, we don’t understand, but we trust You and Your will. Have mercy upon us!”
The Sabbath laws no longer apply to us in New Testament times. Still, the example of the believers on that Saturday before Easter is one we do well to imitate. As we go about our day, whether it’s routine weekend activities or special preparations for tomorrow, let’s keep in mind that the reason we can do so without fear of God’s anger for our sins is that Jesus suffered and died for them. He paid the penalty for us. No matter how many other things we need to focus on today, let’s take time to ponder the depth of Christ’s love which moved Him to sacrifice His own life for us. And on this day when Jesus’ body rested in the tomb, may we find rest for our souls in this, that “we were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life” (Rom. 6:4).
In Jesus’ name,
Our celebration of the Lord’s resurrection begins at 8:30 tomorrow morning, followed by the brunch prepared by the men of the congregation. All are welcome!