Start with Posture of Silence and Solitude (2 minutes)
Read Scripture: Luke 23:44-49 The Death of Jesus
It was now about noon, and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon, for the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.” When he had said this, he breathed his last.
The centurion, seeing what had happened, praised God and said, “Surely this was a righteous man.” When all the people who had gathered to witness this sight saw what took place, they beat their breasts and went away. But all those who knew him, including the women who had followed him from Galilee, stood at a distance, watching these things.
On the day of his death, the disciples continued to love Jesus but their hopes for his kingdom on earth had shattered. Most of them had gone into hiding.
Verse 44 tells us that darkness came over the land for about three hours. It was as if nature seemed to mourn over the stark reality of the death of God’s son. Even the curtain in the temple was torn.
The temple was divided into three parts: the temple courts where the people gathered to worship; the Holy Place, where priests could enter; and the Most Holy Place, where the high priest alone could enter once a year to atone for the sins of the people.
When the high priest entered this place, a rope was tied to his waist so if he were to perish while inside the Most Holy Place, this body could be pulled out without having to disturb or upset God.
The temple curtain in the Most Holy Place was a purposeful barrier between man and God. But when it was torn in two, it symbolized that the barrier between God and man was no more. Man could now approach God directly through Jesus.
Questions to ponder:
- Stop and think about how Jesus’ friends were present for the execution and their disappointment that Jesus didn’t appear to be who he said he was, at least in their eyes. Has Jesus “disappointed” you?
- Given this passage, what is the best way for you to pray today?
End with Posture of Silence and Solitude (2 minutes)