Jesus lay dead in a secure tomb. A stone was rolled in front of it so that no one would be able to steal the body and claim He had risen from the dead. It was too late to prepare His body for burial. The Sabbath had already begun. The day required rest and the absence of any kind of labor. It was a long period of silence for the disciples and those who loved Jesus. They could only mourn the loss of their friend in silence.
The sound of silence can be deafening. We’re in a time where we have nothing to break the barrier between us and our friends and family. We wish we could be together on Easter as we usually are. We long for time to hug and speak one on one. We need the human element of touch. The streets are almost eerily quiet. The grocery stores have become our only outlet. We could beat ourselves up with the negative side of this imposed silence in our lives, but thinking about that first Easter Saturday, we can take this time to contemplate what the beauty of Easter is all about.
It isn’t the commercialism with its high demand for cards, flowers, chocolate bunnies and Easter egg hunts. It has nothing to do with how we can dress to the nines and look our best. It isn’t the beauty of spring bursting forth in all its majesty. This is a day of rest. It is the Jewish Sabbath. It is also the day where Jesus’ dead body lay silently in the tomb, but He was already taking care of business. He defeated our greatest enemy when he hung on the cross. He made it known to Satan that he no longer had dominion over God’s people. He freed us from the bondage of sin and revealed that He was resurrected from the dead.
I happened to think of this old Simon & Garfunkel song as I wrote this. The words still hold some truth for us today. We’re living in a closed world right now. We could turn inward and feel sad for ourselves, but we can also use this time for silence and inner contemplation. God knows what He’s doing and He’s got this.
Hello darkness, my old friend,
I’ve come to talk with you again,
Because a vision softly creeping,
Left its seeds while I was sleeping,
And the vision that was planted in my brain
Within the sound of silence.
In restless dreams I walk alone
Narrow streets of cobblestone,
‘Neath the halo of a street lamp,
I turned my collar to the cold and damp
When my eyes were stabbed by the flash of a neon light
That split the night
And touched the sound of silence.
And in the naked light I saw
Ten thousand people, maybe more.
People talking without speaking,
People hearing without listening,
People writing songs that voices never share
And no one dared
Disturb the sound of silence.
“Fools” said I, “You do not know
Silence like a cancer grows.
Hear my words that I might teach you,
Take my arms that I might reach you.”
But my words like silent raindrops fell,
In the wells of silence
And the people bowed and prayed
To the neon god they made.
And the sign flashed out its warning,
In the words that it was forming.
And the signs said, ‘The words of the prophets are written on the subway walls
And tenement halls.
And whispered in the sounds of silence.