Jerry A. Collins
® What were the Easter miracles?
® What is the significance of these miracles?
® What do they teach us about Christís person and work?
Surrounding Christís death on the cross, is a chain of miraculous events that authenticate at
least three things.† (1) The uniqueness
of Jesus Christ is revealed through this chain of miraculous activity.† (2)†
Jesus claims as the Son of God are clarified through these miraculous
events.† (3)† Salvation is available because of the work of
Jesus Christ on the cross.† Each miracle
So what are these miracles and what do they teach and tell us?† Matthew 27:45-53 provides the setting for each of these miracles.† They include the following:
® The darkness over the land
® The tearing of the temple veil
® The shaking of earth;rocks splitting
® The opening of tombs
® The raising of many saints who died
The Miraculous Darkness
The darkness is from until vs. 45.† Darkness is referred to over 160 times in the Bible.† It is significant that the first act of God in Genesis was the removal of darkness by the creation of light.† It was now , the sun is high in the sky--and suddenly total, dismal darkness falls over the land.† The word Ďfellí means Ďto happen, to come to beí and suggests the suddenness of this.† The darkness was sudden, not gradual.† It was just like someone had turned the lights out not just in the room but† throughout all of the land.† What caused this darkness?† (1)† Some suggests it was an eclipse.† But this darkness occurred suddenly and lasted for three hours.† (2) Others suggests a natural phenomena like darkness associated with an earthquake or volcanic eruption.† But again it had come suddenly.† (3)† The best answer would be an act of God.† God the creator who placed the planets in orbit intervened in nature with this miracle.† Darkness here is a fitting symbolic act of God using darkness as a vehicle to express certain truth to sinful man (Ex -22).†
(1)† Jesus became a sin-offering for the world.† At this point Jesus was bearing our sin on Himself as our substitute.† 2 Corinthians ĎHe made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf...í†† During this darkness a divine exchange is taking place.† Jesus was taking on Himself the sin of the world.† He was receiving the penalty and punishment of sin.† The wrath of God the Father was being unleashed on Godís Son.†
(2)† Christ was forsaken by His Father.† While Christ is becoming a sacrifice for sin, the Father forsakes His Son and in some significant way there is a separation from the Father He had never known before.† For three hours the darkness spoke of Christ separated from God by the sin of the world and punished for us as He took our sin upon Himself.
(3)† Christ was satisfying Gods wrath toward sin.† Romans says ĎGod publicly displayed Him as a satisfaction for sin by His blood...í† Jesus was becoming the place where His sacrifice completely satisfied Gods demands against sinful people, thus averting His wrath from those who believe.† Jesus did what Ďis impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sinsí Hebrews 10:4.†
The cry of Christ in vs. 46 could be the exact
moment when our sin was placed upon Christ or a cry for deliverance that could
no longer endure our sin and the separation from His father.† In vs. 50 Jesus cries out and commits His
Spirit into Gods hands.† In other words,
because of these dark hours, our salvation was made possible once and for
Our sin put Christ on the cross and made His sacrifice necessary.† Every violation of Gods character made the cross necessary.† When you gossip, lie, pride, hate, immoral, indifferent, unloving, disobedient, unfaithfulness and rebellion.† The dark hours was the time Christ bore the iniquity of us all.† We are all guilty of putting Christ in position as our sacrifice and substitute.† He laid His life down for us no one took it from Him.† The darkness was necessary before the light could come! Jesus was the only person ever qualified to die for our sin.
The Torn Veil
Immediately after the death of Christ, the temple
veil was torn in half.† Christís death
suddenly ripped in half this 19 ft high, 60 ft wide and thickness of a mans hand veil.†
This veil was a concealment and a barrier
between the holy place and the Holy of Holies in the
(1)† We have complete confidence in Christ as only way of salvation.† The object of our faith makes all the difference.
(2)† We are fully accepted by God in Christ.† He declares us as acceptable to Him on the basis of His Sons work, when we believe.† Our acceptability is not dependent on our behavior or works.† When we believe we never have to worry about Gods acceptance.
Earth And Rocks††
Creation itself testifies to Christ death.† The other time God caused the earth to quake
The Opened Tombs
The opened tombs were a further effect of the death of Christ.† Since the power of sin is death, the death of Christ, having paid for the penalty of our sin, has removed the cause of death.† 1 Corinthians says Ďthe sting of death is sin and the power of sin is the law but thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christí.† By sin death gains power over man.† Christ by His death paid the penalty of sin, removing its stinger and satisfying the demands of the law and the holiness of God Romans 5:18-19.† (Bee illustration)† The graves and tombs were opened on Friday afternoon and stood as a testimony to the miraculous effect of Christís death until Sunday.
Resurrection of Saints
The bodies in these tombs were raised when Christ
was resurrected.† these
people returned to
1.† God loves you.
2.† God provided for you.
3.† God delivers you.† Believe!†