Saturday of Holy Week is often known as “Silent Saturday” – because we have NOTHING written about this day in the Scriptures. The Sabbath would have started at sundown on “Good Friday” and everyone would be taking their sabbaths in their homes. For the followers of Jesus, this must have been a most difficult day! No one knew anything about what was going on… Jesus had been hastily taken off the cross and put into a borrowed tomb. The closure stone was rolled over its entrance and a 24-hour posting of guards were placed in front of the stone.
Those who loved Jesus had returned to their homes, grieving deeply. His bloody body still a vivid image in their minds… the kind of image that popped back into view every time they closed their eyes or quit thinking about anything else. No one was remembering the words Jesus had spoken earlier about rising on the third day. To them, this was a private mourning day. A silent Saturday.
But we know the rest of the story, don’t we? Praise the Lord! On this Silent Saturday, God was working!!! He wasn’t silent at all!
So on this Silent Saturday, I offer you something God gave me two years ago. Still unedited. Just as He gave it to me. For His use and glory alone.
Thoughts on this Silent Saturday (A repost from 2012)
The Lord awoke me with these thoughts today, and I typed them because I can type faster than I can write. I thought these were meant for my prayer journal only, but as He often does, God’s plans trumped mine. So I offer them here. Raw. Unedited. Straight from my heart to the Lord, and to you. May God be glorified and may each of us be strengthened as we wait upon Him on this Silent Saturday.
Saturday, April 07, 2012
If ever there was a day that represented trusting-God-no-matter-what… this would be the day. Silent Saturday. I can only imagine the thoughts and feelings of those who followed Jesus for three years, seeing Him do one miracle after another… hearing Him teach about His Kingdom that is not of this earth… even the one who owned the donkey He rode into Jerusalem on, and the homeowner of the upper room where Jesus celebrated the Passover with His disciples… Mary, John, Peter, Jesus’ brothers and sisters in the literal sense… What were they thinking on this Silent Saturday?
All had heard Him proclaim that He was the King. All knew the Old Testament prophesies that His life and coming fulfilled. All were watching and waiting for the time that He would rise victoriously and overthrow the yoke of oppression that had gripped the necks of His people for too long. All that knew and believed in Jesus had hoped in Him.
And He died on the cross.
And He was buried hastily in a tomb because the Sabbath was near.
I can imagine that the people returned to their homes on Friday afternoon discouraged, disappointed, and disillusioned. The One they had put their hopes in had not done what they thought He would or should. Instead, He had just hung there and died. No different from every other person who was hung on a cross.
How did they go about making preparations for the Sabbath? Did they have downcast spirits and sorrowful hearts? Sorrowful that Jesus hadn’t done what they thought He said He would. And just simply sorrowful that one of their own was crucified on the eve of this holy celebration.
But Jesus… He was supposed to be the one to rescue them. To save them. To save all. Mary knew this. Mary knew Who Jesus was. Why had God let Him die? He WAS the Promised Messiah, born of a virgin, and the fulfillment of the words prophesied about Him for over 1500 years. Yet He hung there and died. He had given Mary to John and John to Mary as mother and son, indicating that He would no longer be around. What was it all for? Why, God, did it have to end up this way?
Grief over the loss of a son and friend and teacher pilled on top of an even deeper grief over the loss of hope in God.
Disappointment in God causes the greatest sorrow. When we can look at our difficulties and retain our hope in God, then nothing is actually lost. But when God doesn’t come through the way we “hoped” He would, we are faced with the grief of the reality of the difficult circumstance as well as the reality that God either abandoned us or just didn’t plain come through for us… or worse yet, that we had misunderstood Him the whole time.
What were those closest to Jesus thinking on this silent Saturday? Were they mundanely going about their Sabbath rest with no rest in their minds and hearts? Jesus – the ONE they had hoped in had not done what they hoped He would.
Of all days… this Silent Saturday is an exercise in trusting the Lord – No matter what! According to what was seen with the eyes, and even felt with the heart, hope was lost. But we know the rest of the story…
The day wasn’t dead just because it was silent.
We don’t know exactly what Jesus was doing in His death on this day. Many speculate, but the Scriptures don’t exactly say… but what we DO know is that this Silent Saturday wasn’t the end of God’s plan. It was part of the fulfillment! It was the 11th hour, so to speak. An exercise in trusting God – believing that even though it doesn’t look like God is still working – He was. He is.
Today is an exercise in believing that even though what we hoped would happen didn’t – it still could and would because God said so.
This Silent Saturday is an exercise in believing God. In looking away from what is seen to what is unseen. For what is seen is temporal, and what is unseen is eternal. PTL!
Oh Jesus – on this silent Saturday, as we continue to cling to Your Promises that You will NEVER leave us nor forsake us, You will provide for all of our needs according to Your riches and glory, that You Who have called us will be faithful to complete Your call in our lives… as we cling to these promises that seem yet fulfilled… may we go about this day not in disillusionment, discouragement, disappointment, and despair, but in the JOY of knowing that You are alive, active, and always true to Your Word. You will do what You say You will do… even when you are working underground… in the silence… when all above ground seems dead and still.
On this Silent Saturday, may we exercise our muscles of faith in trusting You for those things that you have not yet brought into being.
We know the rest of the story. You did EXACTLY as you said you would. You defeated death! You arose from that grave! You rebuilt the temple in three days… rebuilt it in every human heart that would surrender to You as Lord and Savior. You ARE the KING! You victoriously overthrew the yoke of oppression that weighted down your people back then… and now. Oh, how I praise You!
Oh Jesus, on this Silent Saturday, may I bless You by clinging to You in “trust”, no matter what is happening around me? This is my desire. This is my prayer. For me, and for my family, and for every single believer who desperately needs you to work on behalf of their lives.
Thank You for Your Grace as we wait and watch for resurrection… on this Silent Saturday. May we never again sit in hopeless grief because You seem to be silent. Have your way with us, oh Jesus… Thank you for this Silent Saturday, and for what You are teaching us as we wait upon You. Oh, how I love you!
“He is not here, but has risen! Remember how He told you…” Luke 24:6
One more thing: a requested re-post of something the Lord gave me three years ago…
‘Twas the Night Before Easter ~ An original poem
Yesterday, Abigail was randomly quoting “The Night before Christmas”… and all of a sudden, this poem started swirling around in my mind. It was a sweet gift from The Lord to me, and I wanted to pass it along. 🙂 On this silent Saturday, may we rejoice in Jesus, The Truth, Life, and Way!
‘Twas the night before Easter, and all through the land
There was mourning and grieving for Jesus, the man.
Forsaken by God, abandoned by friends,
Jesus was punished for all of our sins.
“Crucify Him!” the angry crowds cheered.
“Save Yourself!” the bitter ones jeered.
His followers’ hopes were dashed in His death
As they watched their Leader take His last breath.
They didn’t remember or couldn’t understand
All Jesus said about God’s ultimate plan.
What they thought in this silence seemed the end.
They’d lost a Master, a Teacher, a Friend.
But Praise be to God – things aren’t as they seem!
A battle was raging behind death’s last scene.
Sin could not win, death could not hold
Messiah, Our Savior, as prophets foretold.
When on the third day, women were a-chatter,
Disciples ran to the tomb to see what was the matter.
The tomb – it was empty, just like they said.
Jesus had risen – He’s no longer dead!
Sin, where is your victory? Death, where is your sting?
It was finished! Sin’s curse destroyed by Jesus, The King!
Now we hear Jesus exclaim from His Word every day,
“Come unto me, I’m the Life, Truth, and Way!”
‘Twas the morning of Easter, and all through the land,
We rejoice in Salvation, through Jesus, for man!
Jennifer Crawford Walker