Being Good Friday, we were talking about the Gospel Story around the dinner table. My three year old daughter (a theological mind if I ever met one) is telling all about Jesus. She knows about the Cross, and about the stone being rolled away, and about Him living again but has a serious question.
“He wasn’t really dead, was He?” She asks.
“Oh, but He was really dead. Dead is Dead. He was dead.” I reply.
As I said the words I began to think about Jesus being dead. I mean, dead-dead. I’ve thought long on Him dying, and long on Him risen, but never really before on Him in the grave. Between Good Friday and Easter there He was, dead in the tomb. The day in between is important; during that day He experienced death in a real way. His day in the tomb was a long pause between atonement and resurrection, between two great works. Not just through dying and rising but also through His being dead, He has won us victory:
Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, He Himself likewise partook of the same things…
He dies just like I will.
that through death He might destroy the one who has the power of death, the devil…
Through that death He beats the architect of death – the devil.
and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery. Hebrews 2:14-15
I need never be a slave to the fear of death. I am free.
The day in the tomb was not a write-off. Through those cold, still hours He was working a great triumph that we can partake of. Praise be to God.