What Was God Doing on Saturday?

“He bought a linen cloth, took Jesus down from the cross, wrapped him in the cloth, and laid him in a tomb that had been carved out of rock. He rolled a stone against the entrance to the tomb.” (Mark 15:46)

Chapel of Joseph of Arimathea, National Cathedral, Washington, DC

Here’s the way Wendell Berry described what God was doing on that dark, silent Saturday when Jesus body was laying in the tomb.

What hard travail God does in death!
He strives in sleep, in our despair,
And all flesh shudders underneath
The nightmare of His sepulcher.

The earth shakes, grinding its deep stone;
All night the cold wind heaves and pries;
Creation strains sinew and bone
Against the dark door where He lies.

The stem bent, pent in seed, grow straight
And stands. Pain breaks in song. Surprising
The merely dead, graves fill with light
Like opened eyes. He rests in rising.
(A Timbered Choir, p. 25)

Perhaps the silence of Saturday is the reminder that beneath the surface, God is still at work in every dark, deadly, lifeless place to break through the darkness and bring new life. The resurrection means that tomorrow is never just another day!

May the same power that broke open the tomb on Easter morning shake us with new life preparing us to shout, “Christ is risen!  Christ is risen, indeed!”

Grace and peace,

Jim Harnish

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1 thought on “What Was God Doing on Saturday?

  1. It is the way of all things that the night ends and the light returns. The light always returns.

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