Jesus’s Death and Burial

Open Your Bible

Luke 23:44-49, Matthew 27:45-56, Luke 23:50-56

Few experiences are more revealing than suffering. Have you ever seen a friend’s character shine brightly in the face of an unthinkable loss, a heartbreaking betrayal, or a frightening diagnosis? Our moments of deepest grief show us who we are, and we can see it’s the same with Jesus. Though the end of His earthly life was marked by pain, betrayal, humiliation, and a violent, unjust death, here we see a man who died as He lived.

Jesus isn’t stoic in His darkest hours. There’s the cry of despair, echoing the psalms: “My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?” (Matthew 27:46). But there’s also a humble submission as He takes His last breath and entrusts His spirit into the Father’s hands. (Luke 23:46). Despite the rejection of the crowds and all the humiliation they could throw at Him, He faces death with a sense of completion. He has followed God faithfully to the end, and the story isn’t over.

Even creation mourns, as “darkness came over the whole land until three, because the sun’s light failed” (vv.44–45). We read of earthquakes and the temple curtain ripping like garments of grief. But in this darkness, He is not alone. The women who followed Him watched from a distance, bravely keeping vigil. Maybe they hope He really will come down from the cross. If not, they will care for His body, giving Him the dignity He was denied in death.

A Roman centurion watches too. Perhaps he’d heard stories and rumors about this teacher that angered the crowds in Jerusalem and the Roman government alike. Likely he was just there to do his job, to keep order and stand guard for these crucifixions. Does he recognize the injustice in this death? Or is it Jesus’s constant forgiveness and love that opens the soldier’s eyes to the truth: “Truly this man was the Son of God!” (v.54).

In this darkest hour, it feels like all hope has died. Jesus—the one the disciples hoped would save Israel, the one who healed the sick and confounded the expert teachers, the one who faced violence and false accusations with clarity and purpose—is dead. Joseph of Arimathea, a wealthy man and member of the Sanhedrin, offers Jesus a proper burial in a borrowed tomb. The women who loved Him wait and rest on the Sabbath, with plans to care for Him in death as they did in life.

We know this is not the end, but we cannot rush past this part of the story. Jesus has shown us how to suffer well, and knowing He has experienced the darkest depths of pain can give us hope. He was not alone, and neither are we.

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48 thoughts on "Jesus’s Death and Burial"

  1. Erica Chiarelli says:

    Amen. Thank You for Jesus!!!

  2. Kenya Rafferty says:

    I don’t think I realized either how dark it was! That the sun stopped shining. And what do the people do? Continue to crucify him. The curtain tore before he died. What did they do? Continue to crucify him. So blind in their own rage and plan that they missed all the final signs – after all of the other ones they had missed before. Am I that blind sometimes that God could turn off the light in my life and I still wouldn’t see what He has promised and is giving me?

  3. Alayna P. says:

    When the centurion says “Truly this man was the Son of God!” I wrote in my book: no, He IS the Son of God! ❤️

  4. Nancy Singleton says:

    Sharon, Jersey Girl, my mother lived & died a similar testimony as your mother. I felt that we were nearly able to walk her to heaven’s gates by her grace & composure, her total trust in God’s plan for her ultimate good, even as she (& we) prayed for physical healing that didn’t come. The example she set was amazing, as she placed her life & death in God’s hands, & he showed her such tender mercy-no pain, no fear, peace that truly surpassed understanding & thereby was shared with us. I pray often that as I age (70 now), I will have the faith, courage & peace to face whatever challenges come that first Jesus showed, then my mother, & 12 years later, my father.

  5. Regina Clinton says:

    Lord help me to always praise You, even in my pain and suffering. Amen

  6. Catherine McVey says:

    Amen @Tina!! Beautifully said!❤️

  7. Cathy says:

    Sisters…so much hits me in these familiar passages but isn’t it amazing how they speak differently depending on circumstances. Having grieved the past year over my church’s decision to disaffiliate from the denomination I hear Jesus message of forgiveness …. In his death he showed us how to surrender with his very last words. Yes our whole church will lose and neither church that arises will be the same as it once was. Whatever decision is voted upon Monday evening…may we ALL move forward with the same grace and forgiveness and love that Jesus did until his last breath.

  8. Dorothy says:

    “knowing He has experienced the darkest depths of pain can give us hope.”, these words Jen wrote in today’s devotional are ones that will stay with me. To know someone has gone what you have gone through is ALWAYS, ALWAYS helpful. No the circumstances may not be the same but the experience is.

    When I lost my son the people who could relate to me and who came at the right time — I still say it was God’s doing — were my maternal aunt and uncle. They had also lost their oldest son at the age of eighteen, the circumstances weren’t the same, but the feeling none the less were. They arrived within five minutes of my finding out he was dead. I to this day don’t know who called them or most of the people who showed up at my house while they were searching for my son. What I do know is the Lord was with me during that time.

    Sisters please pray for me, I going to tell Finley’s family tomorrow that I am going to have cut back to only Saturdays with starting in April. Last night was hard, my back hurt. I had to change her a lot more than usual.

    Be blessed and ALWAYS, ALWAYS reach out to God and Christ in your times of need and in joy sisters.