Tetelestai – It Is Finished!

Matthew 27:45-54


Rocks and tombs broke apart as the reverberating cry shook heaven and earth. The man felt the ground quiver and heard the shuddering roar of ruptured stone. Dense darkness bore down as he opened his eyes from what felt like a long, deep sleep. His body felt heavy. Faint memories of past pain whispered while he tried to get his bearings. Where was he? What had happened?

Distant shouts interrupted his musings.

“Did you hear?” Said one. “The curtain of the temple has torn in two!”

“Impossible!” Replied another. “How could that be?”

“Not by human hands. The tear ran from top to bottom!”

“What does it all mean?”

The man wondered the same as the voices faded away. The temple curtain he remembered was 60 feet high and 4 inches thick.  Struggling to his feet, he realized he was in a cave. He moved to the entrance and saw the sky begin to emerge from a veil of night. Across the hill stood three crosses. A group of people surrounded the one in the middle, weeping and wailing. The man moved closer. Something drew him to that middle cross. As he approached, someone ran by and nearly collided. It was a young boy. He looked back as if to apologize, but the blood drained from his face like he’d seen a ghost. Without a word, he ran off.

The man continued his journey to the cross in the middle. The One who hung there was bloodied and bruised, yet he seemed familiar. Roman soldiers walked around, trying to keep the onlookers away. Except for one whose uniform proved him to be a centurion. Head bowed, he sank to his knees, proclaiming “surely he was the Son of God!”

And in that moment, the man recognized Jesus.

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