Ellen G. White Writings

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Humble Hero, Page 354

Jesus Rests in Joseph’s Tomb

At last the long day of shame and torture was over. As the setting sun ushered in the Sabbath, the Son of God rested in Joseph’s tomb, His work completed.

In the beginning, the Father and the Son had rested on the Sabbath after their work of Creation. See Genesis 2:1. All heavenly beings rejoiced in looking at the glorious scene. Now Jesus rested from the work of redemption, and though there was grief among those who loved Him on earth, there was joy in heaven. God and angels saw a redeemed race that, having conquered sin, could never fall—this was the result to flow from Christ’s completed work.

When there will be a “restoration of all things” (Acts 3:21), the creation Sabbath, the day on which Jesus lay at rest in Joseph’s tomb, will still be a day of rest and rejoicing. “From one Sabbath to another” (Isaiah 66:23) the nations of the saved will bow in joyful worship to God and the Lamb.

The closing events of the Crucifixion day saw a new witness to Christ’s divinity. When the Savior had uttered His dying cry, another voice spoke up, saying, “Truly this was the Son of God!” Matthew 27:54.

These words came in no whispered tones. Who had spoken? It was the centurion, the Roman soldier. The divine patience of the Savior, His sudden death, the cry of victory on His lips, had impressed this heathen. In the broken body hanging on the cross, the centurion recognized the Son of God. On the very day of the Redeemer’s death, three men had declared their faith—the one who commanded the Roman guard, the one who carried Jesus’ cross, and the one who died by His side.

As evening approached, an unearthly stillness hung over Calvary. Many had flocked to the crucifixion from curiosity, not from hatred toward Christ. Still, they looked on Christ as a criminal. Under unnatural excitement they had united in shouting abuse against Him. But when the earth was wrapped in blackness, they felt guilty of a great wrong. When the darkness lifted, they made their way home in solemn silence, convinced that the charges of the priests were false, that Jesus was no pretender. A few weeks later, when Peter preached on the day of Pentecost, they were among the thousands who became converts to Christ.

But the Jewish leaders were unchanged; their hatred had not subsided.

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