The Word of God gives us little to no information about Saturday – the Sabbath that occurred between the day of Jesus’ death and the morning of His resurrection. It was a day of rest for the Jewish people.
We can imagine the tears and sorrow of the disciples. But the Bible does tell us there was also some anxiety. In Matthew 27:62-66, we are told of one interaction in which the Jewish leaders were worried. The chief priests and Pharisees go to Pilate and say, “This guy talked about being resurrected on the third day, and we don’t want His disciples pulling any tricks, so give us a guard to secure the tomb.” Pilate said, “Here’s your guard; make it as secure as you know how.” We are told that they actually sealed the stone at the front of the tomb, and set the Roman guard to watch it.
We ought to be so encouraged when we look and see the faithful, sovereign hand of God. Enemies rise up against His will, all odds seem to be against God’s kingdom and against us as His people. We can sometimes feel powerless to bring anything good to the mess that is raging around us. Even after Jesus’ crucifixion, the Pharisees were seeking to stamp out Jesus and His disciples. But through their efforts, God was skillfully setting the scene for the reliable evidence of Jesus’ resurrection!
Recall how the prophet Elijah, centuries before, commanded that the wood on his altar to God be completely soaked with water. The prophets of Baal had cried out for fire to fall on dry wood all day, to no avail. Elijah prays once for the LORD God to send fire from heaven, and immediately, fire consumes the wood that is drenched in water! Little did the Pharisees know it, but on that Sabbath they were pouring water on the wood of God’s altar. Go ahead and try to stop the resurrection power of Jesus Christ! Go ahead and try to keep Him in the tomb. The resurrection is so all-consuming that you will only end up proving how awesome the miracle is.
We can get discouraged when God is silent. I don’t imagine any reassuring whispers of the Holy Spirit into the hearts of the disciples on that Saturday. They truly believed Jesus was gone. It looked as if evil was prevailing. As long as we are surrendered to Jesus Christ, we can have joy, no matter what the scene looks like around us. We can put our hope and trust in the plan of God. He has not left us without help! He certainly will not abandon His own Son, and if we have His Son dwelling in our hearts by faith, there is no circumstance that escapes His attention. You may not see it at first, but be assured that God is still working His perfect plan, even while He seems to be silent.