Last nite was nuts! A collection of ridiculous trials had been quickly put together for the sole purpose of making a case so Pilate would be obligated to hear it and, with any luck, they could extract from him the death penalty that they couldn’t legally administer on their own (John 18:31).
He looked rough by the time Pilate took Him aside. He wanted to figure out a way to out- maneuver the irrational types outside – He wanted to set this guy free. Pilate had had Him flogged and this was after the beatings He had already received (John 19:1-3). Surely the sight of a man that ravaged would be enough to pacify these Jews, but they were insistent. Pilate was between a rock and a hard place once it became apparent that this Christ was setting Himself over Caesar (John 19:15-16). So at 6:00 that morning, the verdict the Jewish religious authorities had been hoping for was a reality and by noon Jesus was on the cross (Luke 23:44).
And then it was 3:00 PM. The weather had been bizarre for the last three hours. But when Jesus said “It is finished,” the weather was no longer the focus as much as it was the earthquake that punctuated the fact that something significant had just happened (Matt 27:51).
What had happened was extraordinary. The spiritual ball and chain that had had a death grip on every ankle had been undone (Rom 8:3-4). A situation that was utterly hopeless was suddenly transformed to an amazing opportunity thanks to a solution that only God could engineer and only God could facilitate.
Everything we typically use to define our lives can, and will, die, quit or change. But at 3:00 today, Jesus initiated a sequence of events that would change everything and give us a chance to truly live rather than merely exist.
When He died, the un-payable debt was satisfied. And when He rose, the unbeatable enemy was defeated. Whatever hope we have, whatever significance we enjoy, whatever strength we possess – all of it was put in place at 3:00 today.
It was a good day!