A Dark Day of Rest

On the Sabbath they rested according to the commandment.
—Luke 23:56b (ESV)

The disciples, the women who had been following Jesus, and the other followers of Christ rested on the Sabbath. Joseph of Arimathea had taken Jesus’ body on that Friday and placed him in a tomb. There was not enough time in the day to truly prepare Jesus’ body for a proper Jewish burial according to their customs, so they waited in mournful rest.

How painful and dark this day must have been for the initial followers of Jesus, those who had built a deep and meaningful relationship with him and had followed him for those last three years. They shared meals with him, likely camped with him under the stars, bore witness to all his miracles, heard all his sermons and teachings, and were even empowered to heal the sick and drive out demons. These individuals mourned and hid in fear of the Jewish leadership who had orchestrated the crucifixion of their rabbi and friend.

You are encouraged to enter a time of quiet reflection today. Reflect on Jesus’ death: what it meant for humanity and what it means for you individually. Consider what it must have been like to be one of those first followers on the first full day after Jesus’ death. Consider also the great love that God has for you.

This post originally appeared as the April 13 devotion in A Daily Walk with God by Christopher J. Hensley.

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