A friend of mine, Jo Anne Young, coined that phrase in a post she wrote just hours ago, describing the day between the horrors of what Christians call Good Friday and the gloriousness of Sunday, the day Jesus conquered death, by His resurrection from the dead.
But isn’t it also true that as a waiting world, we are currently experiencing an “in-between” period? I am referencing the time between the glorious ressurection of Christ, which we as Christians celebrate on Sunday, and the second coming of Christ, when He will return not as Savior, but victoriously as King of Kings, Lord of Lords, and as a judge of all the earth.
On the Saturday following the crucifixion of Jesus, His followers were struggling, trying to piece together all they had seen and heard. After all, they wanted Jesus to be an earthly king who would free them from Roman rule. Never mind all the Old Testament prophesies they knew well, and which Jesus fulfilled in His coming. Even the words of Jesus Himself to Pilate, “My kingdom is not of this world” (John 18:36a), failed to change the thinking of his followers. They were saddened, terrified, confused, disheartened, and dismayed, thinking all was lost.
How could anything even remotely redemptive or good result from the horrors of yesterday? And yet, did they not remember His teaching? Jesus stated, “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to Myself, that where I am, you may be also” (John 14:1-3).
Jesus disciples were really no different than you and I. They wanted what they wanted; they thought an earthly king would bring an end to their troubles. They could not see how the greatest evil perpetrated against the innocent God-man could have resulted in the greatest good for His followers. How many times have I, like His disciples, “suggested” to God that my way is better than His?
While the “Saturday” to which I am referring is not a 24 hour period, it is an “in-between” time. The Jesus followers of His day found themselves troubled by everything they didn’t understand. We find ourselves in a similar situation, don’t we? And just as Jesus clearly told His disciples what was going to happen, He has done the same for us. Like the disciples, we are often confused and disillusioned; we try to fix and control that which we cannot fix and try to control people and circumstances over which we have no control. We work so hard to do what only God Himself can do.
But He has a plan, His eternal decree, and He says that it is good. After all, history is His story, and in spite of the unfolding of His plan in ways we oftentimes see as neither good nor redemptive, He assures us that one day, all will be well.
In the book of Revelation, chapter 21, John, while stranded on the island of Patmos, recorded a vision given to him by the Lord Himself. He tells us that at the second coming of Christ, Jesus’ return finds Him “sitting on a white horse, (and) in righteousness (He) judges and makes war” (Revelation 20:11). John then writes, “Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘ Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be His people, and God Himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying , nor pain, anymore, for the former things have passed away.’ And He who was seated on the throne said, ‘Behold, I am making all things new.’ Also He said, ‘Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true'” (Revelation 21:1-5).
Yes, it is Saturday, the “in-between” day, but Sunday is coming! Thanks be to God!