Read Matthew 27.57-66

                When it was evening, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who was also a disciple of Jesus. He went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus; then Pilate ordered it to be given to him. So Joseph took the body and wrapped it in a clean linen cloth and laid it in his own new tomb, which he had hewn in the rock. He then rolled a great stone to the door of the tomb and went away. Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were there, sitting opposite the tomb.

                The next day, that is, after the day of Preparation, the chief priests and the Pharisees gathered before Pilate and said, “Sir, we remember what that impostor said while he was still alive, ‘After three days I will rise again.’ Therefore command the tomb to be made secure until the third day; otherwise his disciples may go and steal him away, and tell the people, ‘He has been raised from the dead,’ and the last deception would be worse than the first.” Pilate said to them, “You have a guard of soldiers; go, make it as secure as you can.” So they went with the guard and made the tomb secure by sealing the stone.


From Rev. David T. Chafin, Deputy Regional Minister

This day is unlike any other. It sits on one horizon of horror and another of breaking dawn. It is the cusp of both paradise and hell, of torture and sweetest relief. Today is dark and silent. Today is grim with ghastly memories.

Don’t be afraid of it. And do not fear when the silence gives way to rumblings and shrieks and gasps of surprise as the long night ahead passes into morning. Beyond this dull and comfortless sleep lies the awakening of eternity, the joy we can only conceive of with faith-filled imaginations.

In the darkness of this day, O God, bring hope,

as we make new space in our lives for him who gives life.