Bible Reading Day 76
Day 76 – Mark 15:27-47
Our reading brings us to the pinnacle of God’s love on the day of the week when we celebrate the resurrection. Today we see the death of Jesus in our place; with details that underline God’s heart for us all to receive His love.
First the ridicule of the passers-by and the religious leaders; to any reasonable person these seem both unjust and hateful. By contrast, Jesus (who had done nothing wrong) submits to a terrible, lingering death for the sake of us all, to save us from separation from God.
Then, after three hours of immense pain, darkness falls over the earth at noon – signifying the terrible evil that is taking place as the sin of the world is taken by Jesus. At the end of this process the Father (with no place in His eternal nature for sin) turns away from His own Son who is now bearing all the world’s sin. At this point the anguish of Jesus is at its peak – He cries out “My God, My God, why have you abandoned me?” I am so thankful that none of us now has to experience that separation, nor cry out with such pain of abandonment.
Finally, at the climax of this amazing sacrifice, Jesus gives up His spirit and the temple curtain (which could only be entered by the High Priest once a year after sacrifice had been made) was torn in two from top to bottom. The symbolism is clear: as soon as Jesus has taken all sin upon Himself and died as sin requires, there is NOTHING preventing anyone coming into God’s presence!
The power of this moment was enough for the hardened Roman officer to confess that Jesus is the Son of God!
Then Joseph of Arimathea is able to ask Pilate for the body of Jesus before the evening brings the start of the Passover Sabbath – the holiest day in the Jewish year. Joseph values giving Jesus a decent burial more than he values ritual purity for the sabbath. And giving Jesus his own tomb is a price he is more than willing to pay. All this is witnessed by a key group of women who would later be the first to also witness the resurrection.
And so evening falls on perhaps the greatest day in history. The day when God showed the full extent of His love for all mankind. Let’s worship Him today.
Have a great day!
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