Saturday, April 23, 2011

Shalom, Telestai, It is finished -- Holy Saturday

It's Holy Saturday. Aaargh. Holy Saturday is about the aftermath of a broken dream. Imagine the feelings of these poor disciples. They have built their world around someone and the person has died, failing them. All their dreams have fallen. They must now prepare to continue living on with this unforeseen life without their former Hope. They must go back to living life without the Power, Love, Wisdom, Guidance, they had gotten used to depending on. 

Many of us are in our own Holy Saturdays. We have had a disappointment and the shock is still on us. We're somewhat numbed from the shock. Others have had their holy saturday experience go on for so long that they have no hope left.

I'll just say that life has been very hard for me for very long. I had hoped my younger son would be healed by now. I had hoped I would be healed by now. I had hoped I would be a rich writer by now. But not only are those things still with me but the devil is still relentless...and (although I am not exactly holed up in the house fearful of being persecuted by evil soldiers) I know a thing or two about being holed up and about being tired of the relentlessness of local cops and courts.

I need rest. Sometimes I get weepy with this need for rest. Not just a little sleep at night but ...a longer rest --one requiring either death or tons of money. It's just been so many years of working hard at life. Don't worry. I'm not asking the spirit of death to come. Anyway, the good thing is that if younger son gets accepted in this program
we won't have to get up every morning and he won't have to get up every morning at 6 am. So that's a little bit more rest. 

And if I get a best-seller, then that's more money and more rest. 

But now I want more rest. I want peace -- Shalom. And sleep and monetary rest. Rest from worrying about my body, rest from worrying about bills, worrying about legal issues, worrying about Gabe's health. Just rest.

The devil is so relentless, relentlessly attacking. Peace, shalom -- everything good-- is such a good thing. 

The Hebrew word for Peace means "nothing broken, everything whole." Jesus said He came to bring us peace. The angels announced Peace on earth. Jesus called himself our prince of peace. He says He called us to peace.

Most Christian denominations spiritualize this. They talk about peace only as salvation from hell, and a kind of emotional peace. But I think if one has had a lot of crap in one's life that one doesn't spiritualize Peace. One sees the need for nothing broken and "complete wholeness" in every area of one's life. Being sick and having sick children means a heck of a lot of brokenness.  

When Jesus was on the cross, His final words were "It is finished." The greek word which Jesus used on the cross was Telestai  which is often translated "It is finished" although it is a business term meaning "Paid in full." But Shalom also can mean "Payment." Both telestai and shalom can mean "paid in full" And if Jesus was on the cross, he probably did use the aramaic word of Shalom. Because Jesus is the Prince of Peace. 

I totally believe that much more of the New Testament was written in Greek than academics believe. So, I will choose to believe that Jesus said "Shalom." But I digress.

Two verses come to mind:
The first: Give us vision lest we perish. 
The second:   Timothy, my son, I give you this instruction in keeping with the prophecies once made about you, so that by following them you may fight the good fight, 1 Timothy 1:18
 We wage war by the prophecies we receive. 

I've been promised good. The Lord himself has promised Good to me. So I look forward to a resurrection. Not something the disciples did. They had forgotten Jesus had said he would rise from the dead. We know He did. 

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