With Covid-19 the prime topic of news lately, reports of suffering and death are constant. We’re hunkered down, wondering when things will return to “normal” (whatever that is).
This being Holy Week, I couldn’t help thinking the followers of Jesus were in a similar situation.
The week had started out with so much promise! They accompanied Jesus as He rode into the Holy City on the back of a donkey. Crowds welcomed Him amid great celebration.
No doubt, the disciples were elated! Onlookers showered homage on Jesus, laying their garments on the ground (so the donkey would pass over them). The throngs waved palm branches in celebration of the King!
But by Friday, it was a vastly different story. Events overwhelmed, culminating in a horrific scene … Jesus, the Messiah, hanging on a cross. The disciples must have wondered, how had the week gone so terribly wrong?
Between Friday and Sunday morning, I imagine the followers of Jesus were seriously hunkered down, agonizing over what had taken place. They were (likely) poring through their memory banks trying to recall the exact words of Jesus, every statement, every smidgeon of conversation to help them make some sense of their circumstances … and how could they forget the shock of witnessing their Friend’s crucifixion?
First disciple: When Mary poured the expensive perfume on His head, why didn’t we figure it out? (Mark 14:3-9)
Second disciple: When He had dinner with Zaccheus, He said something like “salvation has come to this house.” What was that supposed to mean? (Luke 19:5-10)
Third disciple (in hushed tones): I wish I could remember! What do we do now?!
Hunkered down – hiding – fearful (now that Jesus had left them) they’d be next to find themselves hanging on a cross.
It would be Sunday before the picture came into clearer view. Even then, they may have been even more bewildered. How can a man rise from the dead? Still, when the disciples saw Jesus, they knew the Truth.