September 3, 2023

This past Sunday, we heard Luke’s account of the crucifixion of our Lord Jesus – as he prayed for the forgiveness of his executioners and welcomed the humble and penitent thief at his side to join him that day in paradise.

This Sunday, we will hear Luke’s account of Jesus’ moment of death and burial. Darkness will cover the land, the veil in the temple will be torn in two, and we will hear Jesus’ last words, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!” And we will see the impact it had on some present who witnessed it all.

But Luke doesn’t jump right to resurrection day. He also recounts the burial of Jesus with details like who did it, where was he laid, and who witnessed it. The early church considered this good reason to include it as a vital detail in what is known as the Apostle’s Creed.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit
and born of the virgin Mary.
He suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried

Why include Jesus’ burial in this creed? Why is it not incidental? The Heidelberg Catechism Q & A #41 gives this simple reason.

Q: Why was he “buried”?

A: His burial testifies that he really died.

This is crucial for a number of reasons, but one has to do with our union with Christ through faith. If you have repented and believed in the Lord Jesus, not only have you been “crucified with Christ,” (Galatians 2:20) you have been…

“…buried with him by baptism into his death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life (Romans 6:4).”

“If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come (2 Corinthians 5:17).”

The empty tomb is coming (the following Sunday!) with all the glorious promises it secures. But the full tomb also has words of encouragement and comfort and hope for us, if we will consider them.

This Sunday Rob Lister will be preaching Luke 23:44-56 and Cole Jones will be leading our sung worship. Would you take time to read this passage and pray for each as they prepare? And let’s pray for one another that we would find encouragement, comfort, and hope as we sit in the silence of Jesus in the grave that Holy Saturday.

We also invite you to gather again with us at 6pm on Sunday to share the Lord’s Supper together. Aaron Kleist will be “setting the table” for us with a devotional message and Kenny Clark will be leading our sung worship.

See you Sunday, Grace. Come hungry!


In Christ Alone arranged by Anchor Hymns (feat. Sandra McCracken)

There in the ground
His body lay
Light of the world
By darkness slain