Matthew 27:45–56 (ESV)
The Death of Jesus
from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land until the ninth hour. 46And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My
God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” 47And some of the bystanders, hearing it, said, “This man is calling Elijah.” 48And one of them at once ran
and took a sponge, filled it with sour wine, and put it on a reed and gave it to him to drink. 49But the others said, “Wait, let us see whether Elijah will come to save him.” 50And
Jesus cried out again with a loud voice and yielded up his spirit.
51And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And the earth shook,
and the rocks were split. 52The tombs also were opened. And many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised, 53and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection
they went into the holy city and appeared to many. 54When the centurion and those who were with him, keeping watch over Jesus, saw the earthquake and what took place, they were filled with awe and said, “Truly
this was the Son of God!”
55There were also many women there, looking on from a distance, who had followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering to him, 56among
whom were Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of James and Joseph and the mother of the sons of Zebedee.
the curtain tore in two when Jesus died? Big deal! Well, it is a “Big Deal”. The curtain separated the people from God. When the curtain tore, access was opened up to God. You can look at it two ways, the curtain allowed
people to God, or it opened the curtain and let God out. Jesus did open up heaven for us. And now for the strange part… “52The tombs also were opened. And many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep
were raised, 53and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many.” This is the weird “Stephen King” part that most commentaries do not touch. Notice
that it is the body of the saints, which are believers. Their resurrection is the purpose of Christ’s death. His plan of salvation is eternal life in the kingdom of God.
I pray: We praise You, O Christ, and we bless You. By Your holy cross, You have redeemed the world. Amen.