Isaiah 53:7-9 (esv)
He was oppressed, and he was afflicted,yet he opened not his mouth; like a lamb that is led to the slaughter,and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent,so he opened not his mouth. By oppression and judgment he was taken away;and as for his generation, who considered that he was cut off out of the land of the living, stricken for the transgression of my people? And they made his grave with the wicked and with a rich man in his death, although he had done no violence, and there was no deceit in his mouth.
The victory was won. The problem was, no one knew it yet.
The gospels record nothing of what happened on the day after Jesus death. It was the Sabbath – there was nothing they could do. As Jews, in Jerusalem, at the time of the Passover feast, they would have obeyed the law and done no work, only meditated on Gods Word and maybe gone to the temple. Maybe they even stayed in the upper room and mourned.
We know Jesus predicted His death – and also His resurrection. But we also know from the gospels that the disciples still didn’t understand. Right now, they were tired, lost, dejected, confused and upset.
“We thought He would restore Israel.”
“What went wrong?”
“I was sure He was the one!”
“He did so many great things! What went wrong? Was it us?”
Psalm 30:4-5 (esv)
Sing praises to the Lord, O you his saints, and give thanks to his holy name.
For his anger is but for a moment,and his favor is for a lifetime.
Weeping may tarry for the night,but joy comes with the morning.
The disciples didn’t know it yet, but joy was just around the corner – it would come in the morning. The victory was won – they just didn’t know it yet. Sin was defeated, but they were still blind to the victory.
Today was the day to give up all of their hopes, their dreams. Today was a day of despair.
Why we might ask? In some ways, the disciples still were affected by the teaching of the day. Whilst he was alive, even John the Baptist wasn’t sure if Jesus was the One – he sent his disciples to ask Jesus about it! The teaching of the day centered on the Messiah returning and restoring the Jewish Kingdom in power and glory. They expected it to happen immediately. They wondered why Jesus was teaching people to love and forgive, instead of showing up with an army and ridding the land of the scourge of Roman rule. They had, in the end, misunderstood the prophecy and scriptures.
The disciples had sat under Jesus teaching for 3 years – and yet, even they still hadn’t fully grasped what Jesus was doing. Today, all of their human hopes and dreams would fade away.
To be replaced by Gods plan.
I think even today, God sometimes allows is to go through the dry times. The hard times. Times of even despair. We do not go through those times as punishment as some may think, but we go through them so God can truly work in our lives. We experience those times that some of our inferior man made dreams might fall away – and be replaced with Gods prefect will and plan for our lives.
Romans 8:28 (esv)
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.
Lord God, thank you for the work you did for us on the cross, not only that you took our sins and paid the penalty for our wrongs, but that you gave us your righteousness, that we could be right with the Father. Help us to understand your will, your good and perfect will, that we would do in our lives what is best for your Kingdom. In Jesus Name. Amen.
(Photo : flickr / Mourner)