The Stone

23 05 2013

The Jewish leaders had heard of Jesus’ promise to rise from death, but since they refused to accept Him as the long awaited Messiah, they didn’t believe Him. Instead, they feared some of His followers might take the body and claim Jesus had fulfilled His promise and, indeed, had risen. For that reason, they sealed the tomb by having a large stone rolled in front of the opening. I can just see them in their arrogant, self-pious pride thinking they had foiled the plot of Jesus’ followers. If they had any idea who he was, they probably would have said something like, “Even Houdini can’t get out of there.”easter

Boy were they in for a surprise! Sure enough, when Mary Magdalene, along with several other women, came along early Sunday morning, the stone had been moved to expose the opening. And as promised, Jesus was no longer inside the tomb.

Now, flip the calendar forward a few pages to the year 2013. It’s a natural assumption for us to think Jesus moved the stone so He could get out of the tomb, but that wasn’t the case. There were a couple of angels inside the tomb when Mary Magdalene looked inside. They are probably the ones who moved the stone, but not so Jesus could get out. He could have easily gotten out with the stone in place. No, the stone was moved so others could get inside to see He was not there. He had risen just as He said He would. Had the stone been left in place, no one would have been able to see inside. No one would have been able to see the fulfillment of prophecy. No one would have been able to see the glory of the resurrection and the single greatest moment in the history of the world. Instead, everyone would have assumed Jesus’ body, like anyone else’s, would lie in the tomb until it returned to dust. Can you say Schrodiger’s cat?

Sadly, for a great many people, that stone still sits in the mouth of the tomb. They are unable to see that the Lord has risen. They can’t know God because they won’t accept the resurrection. Look around your obsessions long enough to see the tomb is empty. Jesus isn’t there. Instead, He is among us in the form of the Holy Spirit.

I know, that sounds awfully preachy and you’re thinking I’m going to ask you to stand up and sing Hymn No. 313. In the Free Will Baptist Hymnal that was “Just As I Am”. Growing up, that was our closing hymn EVERY Sunday. Well, I’m no preacher and we aren’t going to sing. I’m just a guy who enjoys writing and have, like you, been charged with the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19). This is my small contribution. Now, look inside the tomb and know that Christ is near. empty-tomb-copy

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