A few weeks ago one of the pastors at my church said, "When people ask you when you were saved, the correct answer is 'when Jesus died on the cross.'" I'd never thought about it like that before. I had always thought the Resurrection was the point. I was always searching for some personally definitive moment or experience that would define my moment of salvation, when in reality, just like God says, it has already been accomplished.
It is so easy to focus on the Resurrection because at that point there is rejoicing and glory. The tomb is empty! He is risen! But what about Friday? What about Saturday? What was it like to see Jesus on the cross bearing the full weight of sin? What was it like for Peter to deny his beloved Savior; only to later watch Him hang there—each breath requiring more effort from His frail, beaten body—dying? What was it like for the other disciples, who walked with Jesus so closely, who saw and heard more than we will ever know, to then see the life leave His body after crying out to His Father wondering why He had forsaken His only Son?
Selfishly I am thankful that I did not have to live those two days. It is difficult enough to sit and imagine what those 48 hours were like. My God is so near. Always. What would it be like to watch what could only have seemed like complete and utter defeat? How dark that Friday must have been. How lonely each of Jesus' followers must have felt—a loneliness deep enough to rip your heart in two as though it were the curtain of the temple itself.