On the afternoon of Good Friday, I paused to think about the occasion the day marked – the day Jesus died on the cross. I looked at the time. It was after 3:00. Jesus would already be dead. My heart felt heavy. I felt sorrow. What about the people who were there that day? What were they feeling?
What was it like in Jerusalem at that time? Were the people still in a riotous fit? Did those who called for Jesus’ death feel a sense of victory? Were they celebrating? Or did the darkness that fell upon the land and the earthquake that followed Jesus’ death bring a somber hush to the crowds? Were people scared? Grieving? Matthew 27:54 tells us that the Roman soldiers finally recognized Jesus as the Son of God. What about other non-believers? Did they finally ‘get it’? If so, did they feel remorse?
It’s easy for us to look back in hindsight, equipped with our knowledge from the bible, and scorn those who called for Jesus’ death. If I try to take myself back to that time, I imagine myself sobbing and grieving with Mary, mother of Jesus, and Mary Magdalene. But what if I HAD been there that day? Who would I have been? What would I have done? Would I have recognized Jesus as the Messiah told about in OT scriptures? Might I have seen Him speak, witnessed His miracles, and believed in Him? Or would I have been caught up with the crowd and called for Him to be crucified? It hurts to think that I might have been part of the crowd.
As my thoughts return to the present moment, I am SO THANKFUL that I have the Bible and its truths. Because of these truths, I KNOW who Jesus is and can be confident in my relationship with Him, resisting the call of today’s ‘crowds’. Indeed I am with those who recognize and love the Savior .
Dear God, Thank You for leading me to Your truths and for empowering me with Your Spirit that I can find strength in Your love. Lord, I pray that I will always strive to honor the sacrifice You made for us and hope that I can help others to know You, too. In your precious name I pray. Amen.