Holy Week Devotional - Holy Saturday

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During Holy Week we will be emailing daily devotionals that reflect on what happened each day during Holy Week. We hope and pray the Lord uses these devotionals, and additional resources, to encourage you and grow you in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

These devotionals will be archived on our website, and can accessed here.

Please feel free to share any and all of these devotionals!


What Happened on Good Friday?

Suggested Readings

The chief priests and Pharisees place guards at the tomb with Pilate’s permission
Matthew 27:62-66

They rested on the Sabbath
Luke 23:56b

Devotional

God rested

The Saturday in between Good Friday and Resurrection Sunday was marked mostly by silence. Silence by the Jews as they observed the Sabbath and the command to rest. Silence even from scripture by not revealing much of what took place this day.

Though we don't know much about what went on this day, it's not too hard to imagine and take some educated guesses. The chief priests appear to be nervous and restless, as evidenced by the fact they appeared before Pilate seeking permission to place guards in front of the tomb. Speaking of Pilate, what was he thinking and feeling? Surely the washing of his hands didn't ease his conscience and remove his guilt of sentencing an innocent man to death. What about Jesus' mother Mary? How heartbreaking must it have been for a mother to watch her baby suffer and die. Where were the disciples? Had they already hidden and locked themselves away out of fear of the Jews (John 20:19), or were they in the process of making arrangements for this? Was Peter with them, and had he confessed to them his denying of Jesus? Or was he alone, suffering and tormented by the weight of his actions and sin?

And what of the city? Jerusalem was overflowing with excited pilgrims celebrating Passover. And yet all the hustle and bustle, all the noise and life, would have died down in observance of the Sabbath. How deafening that silence must have been! And in the midst of this chaos, sorrow, restlessness, fear, and silence, God rested.

Just as God rested after finishing His creation to show that it was good, Jesus rested to show His work was good. He rested to mock the enemy. He rested to show mankind that nothing else needs to be done and redemption is solely found in HIs completed work.

So on this Holy Saturday, this Great Sabbath, rest in the completed work of Christ.


Family Discipleship

The passion of Christ
Matthew 26:36-27:66

  1. How do we know that Jesus did not deserve to be crucified?
  2. When Jesus died on the cross, was it the end of the story? What would happen 3 days later?
  3. Why did the rulers have Jesus crucified? What was God's reason?

Worship Through Song

God Rested

So they took His body down
The man who said He was the resurrection and the life
Was lifeless on the ground
The sky was red as blood along the blade of night

As the sabbath fell they shrouded Him in linen
They dressed Him like a wound
The rich man and the women
They laid Him in the tomb

Six days shall you labor
The seventh is the Lord's
In six He made the earth and all the heavens
But He rested on the seventh
God rested
He said that it was finished
And the seventh day, He blessed it
God rested

So they laid their hopes away
They buried all their dreams about the kingdom He proclaimed
And they sealed them in the grave
As a holy silence fell on all Jerusalem

But the Pharisees were restless
Pilate had no peace
And Peter's heart was reckless
Mary couldn't sleep

But God rested

Six days shall you labor
The seventh is the Lord's
In six He made the earth and all the heavens
But He rested on the seventh
God rested
He worked till it was finished
And the seventh day, He blessed it
He said that it was good
And the seventh day, He blessed it
God rested

The sun went down
The sabbath faded
The holy day was done and all creation waited

*For some brief thoughts on this song by its composer, read here


Additional Resources

Video: Holy Week - Holy Saturday

Filmed in conjunction with the book The Final Days of Jesus, this video features short explanations from and interviews with New Testament scholars Andreas Köstenberger and Douglas Moo. Dr. Köstenberger looks at the role of Joseph of Arimathea in Jesus’s burial, the rules for burial at the time, and what we know about first-century tombs. Dr. Moo answers the question of where Jesus was between his death and his resurrection, focusing on 1 Peter 3, which says that Christ preached to spirits in prison. Is this a reference to Jesus descending into Hades?

Holy Week Spotify Playlist

We created a Spotify playlist with music focused on Holy Week. We hope these songs will help you reflect on this momentous week, and help prepare your heart as we reflect on and celebrate these events.

Pinterest

Check out our Easter Pinterest Board for activity and craft ideas for the whole family! You can find the board here.

Books

The following two books were used to help prepare these daily Holy Week devotionals.

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The Final Days of Jesus

A chronological arrangement, with commentary, to help one understand what happened and why it matters today.
More information here.

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ESV Family Devotional Bible

Designed to help families read the Bible and apply God's Word together.

More information here.

Study Guide

The Final Days of Jesus has a companion study guide available as a free PDF. You can download it here.