Last night at the Stations of the Cross, I read a phrase about Jesus' death that was new to me:
Station 11: Crucifixion
They killed Jesus and ended his earthly teachings.
I'm accustomed to the phrase "Jesus' death" being followed by a higher order of things. For example, "Jesus died so we can be saved" or "Jesus died and rose on the third day".
In other words, His death is always the predecessor to something very spiritual and positive.
But that phrase "ended his earthly teachings" brought out the very tangible result of Jesus' death. His daily lessons - the way his followers had come to know them - stopped.
Centuries later, its easy to make the leap from Jesus' death to confident Disciples proclaiming His Word. But the reality is, on that day, they lost their teacher and their leader. Aside from losing a loved one, they also lost their compass and their guide. There was no one there to give them all the answers anymore. Can you imagine the void they must have felt in their lives?
I also couldn't help but wonder ... what if "they" hadn't ended his teachings right then and there. What if Jesus lived another month, another year, or another 10 years. I wonder how many more lessons He could have left for us?