And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent; (Matthew 27:51)
MATTHEW WROTE: Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost. (27:50)
MARK WROTE: And Jesus cried with a loud voice and gave up the ghost. (15:37)
LUKE WROTE: And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the ghost (23:46); JOHN WROTE: When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost. (19:30)
ALONG WITH THESE THINGS CAME A MIGHTY EARTHQUAKE. This was not an earthquake of a trifling magnitude. Rocks did not merely crack but broke in two. At the same time, the earthquake did not disturb the solid rock structure of the Temple. It did not displace the cross while it shook the hill of Calvary. The earthquake opened graves but not all graves. They were the graves of saints.
“IT SEEMED AS THOUGH THE EARTHQUAKE WERE A LIVING THING, whose divine intelligence discriminated the various dead at Golgotha. It seemed as if it sensed the meaning of that shout of victory. It seemed to indicate the program that was to follow and to preintimate the Savior’s victory for His saints by His resurrection on the third day.
“Now, because of all these incidences, how plain it is that the earthquake at Calvary was not such as nature ever causes. Rather, it was nature lifted out of the course of nature; lifted solely and independently by an act of God…(Nicholson)
IT WAS AS THOUGH THE EARTHQUAKE HAD AN ACTIVE PART TO PLAY in the great display God was making before a million people who had gathered in Jerusalem for Passover celebration. Was there ever such a collection of testimony at any Passover Feast down through the centuries? The answer is, “No! There was never such a display of such power and design as to portray the crucial message: The Lamb of God, slain before the foundation of the world has just been slain!”
THE EARTHQUAKE HAD A GREAT TASK TO PERFORM: It had to open the graves and get things ready for the upcoming resurrection of many saints who are going to walk out of those newly opened graves. What we are saying here is that the earthquake was the mighty director of an integrated drama. No one could avoid noticing the earthquake as it shook the ground under the feet of a million people and yet was so selective in its breaking of rock in two and opening graves. It was a symphony with the tympani drums rolling at their utmost, climaxing in the clash of symbols and the rolling of the earth.
THE EARTHQUAKE HAD A WITNESSING FUNCTION OF ITS OWN, in breaking rocks, opening graves and reducing the bravery of seasoned Roman soldiers who had faced death many times but who had never stood in the presence of so great a shaking of the earth. Now when the centurion, and they that were with him, watching Jesus, saw the earthquake, and those things that were done, they feared greatly, saying, Truly this was the Son of God. (Matthew 27:54)
WE HAVE YET TO REVIEW GOD'S DISPLAY AT MT. SINAI when God thundered and shook the earth in preparation for the announcing of His law through the hands of Moses. We also must look at what the mighty hand of God is going to do in the latter days as this age draws to a close, and the great rendering of the earth at the close of the millennium in preparation for the new heaven and new earth.
GOD DOES NOT HESITATE TO USE HIS MIGHTY POWER OVER THE EARTH He created as a means of communicating with men who will not have God to rule over them. The shaking of the earth has only begun. There is much yet to come. At present, we must be careful not to ignore the role of the mighty earthquake that occurred when Jesus hurled His last cry as He gave up the ghost and departed from the cross. Ω
Read Through the Bible in a Year
March 20, 2017 – TUESDAY
A.M. Joshua 1-3 P.M. Luke 1:57-80
(Bible Gateway will read this to you if you like. Look for the speaker icon.)
Memory Verse This Month:
Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ. (Acts 2:36)
Song for Today:
To God Be the Glory (3:25) – (Royal Albert Hall, London)
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