Scripture Reading — Luke 23:44-49
It was now about the sixth hour, and darkness came over the whole land until the ninth hour.
After God's creation was thrown into turmoil by sin, it began to groan-as in the pangs of childbirth. That's how Romans 8:22 describes creation's agony at being twisted out of God's perfect plan. Luke shows us a "spike" in that turmoil as the sun disappears for a time. God's Son was dying, and God's sun reflected the ugly darkness of the moment.
For hundreds of years a curtain in the temple separated the Most Holy Place from the other places the priests could go-it was off-limits to everyone else. Luke describes the curtain being torn in two-from top to bottom. Jesus was dying to pay for human sin, and the separation between God and his people was dissolving.
After all of the misunderstandings and letdowns from his disciples, and after all the hostility from the religious leaders, who now speaks the truth about Jesus? A Roman centurion! God's Son has died, and the truth is emerging from unexpected places!
Today, in the Bible, we can read about the events surrounding Jesus' death. But it is still hard for us to imagine these cataclysms in human hearts, temple grounds, and darkened heavens. We weren't there.
The events were real, though. They were as real as the invisible spiritual battle that Jesus won over sin and Satan that ugly day. Believe it and live!
<p>Dear God, we believe; help us in our unbelief! Put us there, at the cross, by faith. May we speak the truth about Jesus in all we do. "Your kingdom come, your will be done." Amen.</p>