Holy Saturday—2017

That evening a man named Joseph came. He was a rich man from Arimathea who had become a disciple of Jesus. He came to Pilate and asked for Jesus’ body. Pilate gave him permission to take it. Joseph took the body, wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, and laid it in his own new tomb, which he had carved out of the rock. After he rolled a large stone at the door of the tomb, he went away. Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were there, sitting in front of the tomb.

The next day, which was the day after Preparation Day, the chief priests and the Pharisees gathered before Pilate. They said, “Sir, we remember that while that deceiver was still alive he said, ‘After three days I’ll arise.’ Therefore, order the grave to be sealed until the third day. Otherwise, his disciples may come and steal the body and tell the people, ‘He’s been raised from the dead.’ This last deception will be worse than the first.”

Pilate replied, “You have soldiers for guard duty. Go and make it as secure as you know how.” Then they went and secured the tomb by sealing the stone and posting the guard.

We remember, O God, the grief of the disciples when Jesus died. Lead us beyond our fear of death to the joyful knowledge of Life of the ages in him who lives forever and unto ages of ages.

A New Zealand Prayer Book, Holy Saturday; adapted

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