Easter Sunday: Remember His words…

It-Is-Empty

 

No tomb could contain what love was about to release. (Bob Goff)

Jesus has Risen (Luke 24:1-12)

 On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. (Luke 24:1)

As soon as they could, after the Sabbath, the “women” (Mary the mother of Jesus, Mary Magdalene, Joanna, and others) went to the tomb to tend to the body of Jesus.

[A little background about Joanna: “Joanna, along with Mary Magdalene and Susanna were among the “certain women who had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities” (Luke 8:2). Whether Joanna had been demon-possessed or suffered from some mental or physical disability we are not told. It is evident that this female of the upper class, restored to normal health by Christ, gave her life to Him. Chuza, the husband of Joanna, was the “steward” of Herod, which is the same word given as “tutor”.  She is one of the traveling company who went before Christ and the Twelve to arrange for their hospitable reception. Out of her own resources many expenses were met, and in this way she ministered unto Him of her substance. Having freely received His healing touch, she freely gave of herself and of her means for His welfare. (Adapted from: Bible Gateway, All the Women of the Bible)]

Tending to Him was the women’s first priority. They were mourning Him. Can you imagine the horror they witnessed as they watched Him beaten, flogged, enduring the walk to the cross, and then left hanging there to die? Bringing spices to tend to Jesus, to anoint His head and face, gave them purpose and they were eager to serve their purpose.

They found the stone rolled away from the tomb,  but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. (Luke 24:2-3)

Although Jesus had told them that He would come again, the women did not immediately assume that is what the empty tomb represented. Instead they wondered what the empty tomb meant and where His body had been taken.

These faithful followers had a classic crisis of faith at the empty tomb. Can’t we all relate to that? Matthew Henry says “Good Christians often perplex themselves about that with which they should comfort and encourage themselves.”

While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them.  In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead?  He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee:  ‘The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’  Then they remembered his words. (Luke 24:4-8)

He is risen! His words rang true because He IS Truth. Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (John 14:6)

We need to take steps to remember His words, to hide them on our hearts. I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. (Psalm 119:11)

A seasonable remembrance of the words of Christ will help us to a right understanding of his providence. (Matthew Henry)

 When they came back from the tomb, they told all these things to the Eleven and to all the others.  It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the others with them who told this to the apostles.  But they did not believe the women, because their words seemed to them like nonsense. Peter, however, got up and ran to the tomb. Bending over, he saw the strips of linen lying by themselves, and he went away, wondering to himself what had happened. (Luke 24:9-11)

Of those present at the tomb, who are you most like? Are you like Peter, wondering what happened. Wondering. Pondering. Analyzing. Are you like the women at the grave, experiencing a crisis of faith. Or are you like the angels, telling others the Good News and reminding them of what He said? Be renewed, be revitalized, be blessed by remembering His words.  Revel in the miracle of His resurrection. He’s alive!

 

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