Holy Week – Silent Saturday

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Today is called Holy Saturday.  It is also known as Great and Holy Saturday, the Great Sabbath, Easter Eve, and in the Philippines, it’s called Black Saturday.  Recently I have also heard some people call today Silent Saturday.

While Baptists have not typically observed Holy Saturday, it is possible we could learn from other Christian traditions which do observe it.  Today is a day that remembers the day that Jesus Christ’s body lay in the tomb.  The day is often marked with somber reflection.  There’s an invitation to ponder what the world would look like or be without the hope of Christ’s resurrection.  The Apostle Paul says in I Corinthians that “If Christ had never been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins.”  Saturday is a day to remember the disciples’ grief and shock as their hopes had been dashed the day before.

The Gospels do not say much about what happened on Holy Saturday.  While Jesus said plenty of words on Thursday and Friday of Holy Week, on Saturday Jesus is silent.  God is silent as well.  When we celebrate Holy Week, Maundy Thursday and Easter Sunday are most often our focus.  Sometimes we will participate in a Good Friday Service.  But Saturday is often skipped over.  But I want to encourage us to not forget Holy Saturday.

Because the truth is, we have Silent Saturdays in our lives.  We have days when we feel God is absent when God is silent.  Silent Saturdays are the days when we wait for an answer, when we wait for a solution to a problem, when we wait for an end to discomfort or suffering.  We might wonder if God is angry at us.  We might wonder why God is not acting “now” to change our situation.  During these times what are we to do?

While the Gospel of Mark has Jesus’ last words on the cross as “My God, my God why have you forsaken me?,”  The Gospel of Luke records Jesus saying, “into your hands I commit my Spirit.”  Jesus died trusting in God the father’s provisions and plan.  Then on Saturday Jesus waited, waited for God to act on Easter morning.  When we feel God is silent, we’re invited to entrust our lives to God and to wait upon him—as the prophet wrote, “to those who wait upon the LORD they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not grow weary, they shall walk and not grow faint.”

Yes, Silent Saturdays are not easy.  They can be difficult.  They can test our faith in God.  But if there were no Silent Saturdays in our lives, would we genuinely appreciate the Easter Sundays?

I invite you to take some time today in silence as you wait for God to act on Easter Sunday.

Closing Prayer,

Dear God, as I stay silent in these moments help me to entrust my life to you especially in the Silent Saturdays of my life that my Easter Sunday celebrations would be all the more greater and deeper. Amen.

David Braneky


Grace Baptist Church of Blue Bell

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