Jesus replied. “Today you will be with me in paradise.”
After Jesus was hanging on the cross for six hours, He cried out, “My God, My God, why have You left me alone?” For the first time God could not look upon His own Son who was carrying the sins of the world. During those hours on the cross Jesus became the only way that a person could be saved. You see all men are guilty of sin. We cannot pay all that we owe God for our sins. Jesus died and paid the price for all of our sins. All that He asked is that you believe upon Him. Man cannot touch God the Father except through God’s Son Jesus.
Later that afternoon the whole earth was covered with darkness. Like a blanket, the heavy blackness covered both city and countryside. The sun refused to shine. Jesus felt the pain of every person in the world and took upon Himself every single sin.
“Father forgive them for they know not what they do!” Jesus gasped. Jesus was dying very slowly. Then Jesus cried again. “Father into Your hands I commit my spirit!” As breath began to leave His body He cried in a loud voice. “It is finished!” The battle was over and Jesus is Lord. He bowed His head and died. The price was paid. The way back to God was open now.
The very moment that Jesus cried out and gave up His Spirit to heaven. The curtain in the temple split in half. This curtain marked the way into the holiest place of the temple. This was the closest anyone could get to God. Only the high priest was allowed in, and then only once a year.
When the curtain split in two it had a very important meaning. When Jesus died, it meant people no longer had to wait for the high priest to pray for them to God. Jesus had died for every person. He made a Way for them to reach God. So there was no need for the curtain anymore. Now anyone could come to God because of Jesus.
The sky was dark and the earth shook. Rocks tumbled down from the hills. Thunder rolled across the heavens with a deafening sound. The very earth was reacting to the death of Jesus. There was a great rumbling noise. “Why is it so dark?” people screamed.
“It must be the end of the world! We are being punished for what we have done!” They cried.
This was only the beginning of how God would react to His Son’s death. Fear gripped men and women. They ran trying to find a safe place to hide. The huge stones in front of the tombs of the dead rolled away and the dead came back to life. They walked all around Jerusalem and everyone saw them. They were no longer dead but alive.
Just as these people were brought back to life so was Jesus. After three days and nights Jesus took the keys of hell and came back to life. He is alive today and He lives forever!!
Question: Why did the heavens become dark and the rocks fall when Jesus died?
Written by Sybil Shearin
This is a summary and paraphrased event spoken of in the Bible.
Matthew 27:44-50; Mark 15: 33-37; Luke 23:39-46: John 19:28-30