“The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid; for I know that you are looking for Jesus who has been crucified. “He is not here, for He has risen, just as He said. Come, see the place where He was lying. “Go quickly and tell His disciples that He has risen from the dead; and behold, He is going ahead of you into Galilee, there you will see Him; behold, I have told you.” Matthew 28:5–7
In the last moments, of anyone’s life, what person says is most remembered. If you were to die in just twelve hours what would you do? Who would call? What would you say?
In the last moments of the Lord’s life, he took his disciples to the upper room, and in that room Christ taught them what was foremost. So he washed their feet to serve them, so that they might serve others. He taught, so that they might teach others. He ate with them one last time, marking the new covenant, so that they might eat that same dinner with their disciples.
We don’t really know what Christ did on Wednesday, but the Scriptures do tell us us who He was and where He was going:
Who He Was:
Where He was Going:
1 Who has believed our message?
And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?
2 For He grew up before Him like a tender shoot,
And like a root out of parched ground;
He has no stately form or majesty
That we should look upon Him,
Nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him.
3 He was despised and forsaken of men,
A man of sorrows and acquainted with grief;
And like one from whom men hide their face
He was despised, and we did not esteem Him.
4 Surely our griefs He Himself bore,
And our sorrows He carried;
Yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken,
Smitten of God, and afflicted.
5 But He was pierced through for our transgressions,
He was crushed for our iniquities;
The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him,
And by His scourging we are healed.
6 All of us like sheep have gone astray,
Each of us has turned to his own way;
But the Lord has caused the iniquity of us all
To fall on Him.
7 He was oppressed and He was afflicted,
Yet He did not open His mouth;
Like a lamb that is led to slaughter,
And like a sheep that is silent before its shearers,
So He did not open His mouth.
8 By oppression and judgment He was taken away;
And as for His generation, who considered
That He was cut off out of the land of the living
For the transgression of my people, to whom the stroke was due?
9 His grave was assigned with wicked men,
Yet He was with a rich man in His death,
Because He had done no violence,
Nor was there any deceit in His mouth.
10 But the Lord was pleased
To crush Him, putting Him to grief;
If He would render Himself as a guilt offering,
He will see His offspring,
He will prolong His days,
And the good pleasure of the Lord will prosper in His hand.
11 As a result of the anguish of His soul,
He will see it and be satisfied;
By His knowledge the Righteous One,
My Servant, will justify the many,
As He will bear their iniquities.
12 Therefore, I will allot Him a portion with the great,
and He will divide the booty with the strong;
Because He poured out Himself to death,
And was numbered with the transgressors;
Yet He Himself bore the sin of many,
And interceded for the transgressors.
He came home, and his guests were misusing his Father’s house. I suppose if you hired someone to watch your home while you were gone, you would have a certain expectation of what your home is to look like when you return. Christ came to his Father’s house and the way people were using his Father’s house was not as expected. Christ, therefore, had to clean house:
“The Passover of the Jews was near, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. And He found in the temple those who were selling oxen and sheep and doves, and the money changers seated at their tables. And He made a scourge of cords, and drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and the oxen; and He poured out the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables; and to those who were selling the doves He said, “Take these things away; stop making My Father’s house a place of business.” (John 2:13–16, NASB95)
We expected a king, an iron fist who rules righteously before all men, but He came as a suffering servant. His triumphant entry into Jerusalem wasn’t in a chariot, on upon a white stallion, or upon the shoulders of men, but rather on the back of a unused, untrained, unworthy donkey. His position demanded much more, but He humbled himself, coming unlike we expected:
People cried out “Hosanna!” which means “save us!” Their hopes were deliverance from suppression from Roman rule. Christ knew what they needed to be saved from, and by means of the cross He did save them. Christ saved them not as they expected. Today we await His return, and this time it will be as a King. Have you received Him? Are you living as if He is coming soon?
“Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.” (Philippians 2:8, NASB95)