Today’s Illustration: “Silent Saturday”

No other figure in all of history has made such a claim and delivered on it.

After years of miracles and ministry, this would be the final proof that He alone had power over death and the grave.  Jesus predicted and promised His resurrection from the grave after “three days and three nights.”

The final night had now arrived!

Sometimes that final night, Saturday night, the night before the Resurrection, is called . . .

“Silent Saturday
“The Night Before”

The night before . . . Silent Saturday: The disciples believed that their Passover meal with Jesus was the Last Supper they would ever have with Him.

The night before: The disciples were still confused and frightened over what had happened.

The night before: Peter knew that his vow of unswerving allegiance, along with all of the disciples, was hollow.  He thought his failure would only lead him back to fishing.

The night before: Judas had already realized that he had condemned an innocent man and had already returned the money given to him by the religious authorities.

The night before: Annas, Caiaphas, Herod, and Pilate all believed that the illegal trials had accomplished their ends — the death of this man Jesus.

The night before: Pilate’s wife had no idea how true her words to her husband days before were.

The night before: The soldiers guarding the tomb were only concerned about His disciples possibly stealing the body.

The night before: The cries — “Crucify Him” were only memories in the minds of that angry crowd.

The night before: The bodies of two malefactors, who were crucified alongside Jesus, were lying in a garbage pit outside of Jerusalem.

The night before: The spear which pierced the side of Jesus was lying somewhere other than Mt. Calvary.

The night before: There were no people being crucified on Mt. Calvary.

The night before: There were no more earthly tremors opening cemetery tombs and releasing dead men and women.

The night before: A soldier standing at the cross just days before was still convinced that an innocent man was crucified, and He was the Son of God.

The night before: Thomas was overwhelmed with doubts and despair.

The night before: A crown of thorns was lying somewhere on the ground, stained with the blood of Jesus.

The night before: The cross upon which Jesus was crucified was lying on the same mount, awaiting another day of crucifixion.

The night before: Mary, the mother of Jesus, wrestled with painful memories of her son being crucified, with no hope of ever seeing her son alive again.

The night before: Two disillusioned disciples never entertained the thought they would be joined by Jesus on their walk to Emmaus.

The night before:  Pilate’s sign –“JESUS OF NAZARETH THE KING OF THE JEWS” was lying on the ground.

The night before:  His disciples were disheartened, doubting, confused, fearful, faithless, and in hiding without hope!

The night before: Joseph of Arimathea believed that the body of Jesus, which he and Nicodemus had been given permission by Pilate to take down off of the cross, would remain in his tomb for decades to come.

The night before: The Chief Priests and Pharisees were confident that they had securely sealed the grave with a stone and that the grave was securely guarded by a band of Roman soldiers authorized by Pilate.

The night before: The body of Jesus was still enshrouded with the grave clothes the women had wrapped him in two days ago.

The night before: Three women were planning a sunrise trip to the tomb in order to anoint the dead body of Jesus, wondering — “Who shall roll us away the stone from the door of the sepulcher.”

The night before: The women never expected to see the stone already rolled away, to walk into an empty tomb, or to see angels seated beside the grave clothes saying  — “He is not here.  He is risen.”

The night before: Mary Magdalene (“out of whom he had cast seven devils”) never thought she would be the first person who would see and talk to Jesus again.

The night before: Satan believed that he had defeated the Son of God.

The night before: The certain defeat of sin, Satan, death, Hell, and the grave were not yet accomplished.

The night before: The sin debt of all mankind was still not fully satisfied.

The night before: There was no sure and future hope of a bodily resurrection in a new heaven and a new earth.

The night before: There was no talk about Jesus coming again in great power and great glory.

I have often indicated that if there was a time machine that could place at only one event in history, I would choose the garden tomb after Silent Saturday, on that sunrise morning.  Because I know that all would agree that seeing Jesus walking out of that tomb means that everything in life changes its value!

The night before: NO ONE, But NO ONE, expected what was about to take place!

The night before: NO ONE, But NOT ONE, expected that a revolution was about to begin.

The night before  – On Silent Saturday: NO ONE, But NO ONE, expected that within hours the shock waves of His resurrection would be felt around the world, touching every nation for over 2000 years!


— Dr. Ted Martens —


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