I’m excited in anticipation of tomorrow’s solar eclipse. This rare occurrence will be special. Its another spectacular display of our wondrous Creator’s handiwork.
It also reminds me of God’s sovereignty over the laws of nature He put in place. Over the years, I’ve heard some speculate that it was, perhaps, a solar eclipse that caused the sun to go dark for 3 hours while Jesus was being crucified (Matt 27:45). But, it couldn’t have been a solar eclipse.
If you look into the sky tonight, you won’t see the moon. That’s because in the “new moon” phase, the moon rises and sets with the sun. (If you read this blog at a later date, you can check the calendar for the moon phase on August 21, 2017.) The opposite is true of a full moon. This is significant because it’s impossible, within natural laws, for a solar eclipse to occur during the period of a full moon.
However, Jesus was crucified on the first day of Passover, and Passover always occurs under a full moon. The Jewish calendar is based on a lunar calendar of 28-day months, so the first day of Passover has been set to begin with a full moon since it was first instituted by God. (But, don’t take my word for it. Look it up for yourself.)
It wasn’t a solar eclipse that blocked out the sun’s light when Jesus was on the cross. God himself placed a darkness over the land of Israel on that day.
Yet, God’s blocking out the sun’s light for several hours was trivial compared to what our Lord did on the cross. Jesus Christ, “who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing. . . and humbled himself and became obedient to death-even death on a cross!” (Phil 2:6-8).
Why would Jesus submit himself to death on a cross? Because He loves the world (people) with an infinite love, and His sacrifice was the only way for a man to be reconciled with God.
His love for people is boundless and includes every person, “whosoever.” Yes, that includes you . . . and me. Jesus showed the ultimate expression of His love for us at Calvary.
It humbles me to know my Lord loves me more than I am capable of comprehending. And it amazes me that He would die for me, knowing me as only He does.
“How wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ” (Eph 3:18).