In general, Christmas (the birth of Jesus) may be more famous, but it can be said that Easter (the resurrection of Jesus) is more important for the Christian faith. Christmas Jesus is baby and cute, but it feels weak. But Easter Jesus, who broke the death and rose again, is cool and powerful. The resurrection of Jesus Christ can be said to be the highlight and the most wonderful event in his life. If Jesus had remained dead in the tomb, the New Testament would never have been written and Christianity would never have spread throughout the world. Because of Jesus’ resurrection, the New Testament was written and the gospel was preached throughout the world.
24 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. 2 They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, 3 but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. 4 While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. 5 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? 6 He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: 7 ‘The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’ ” 8 Then they remembered his words.
9 When they came back from the tomb, they told all these things to the Eleven and to all the others. 10 It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the others with them who told this to the apostles. 11 But they did not believe the women, because their words seemed to them like nonsense. 12 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 24:1-12)
1) Unbelief in the Resurrection
The women are the women mentioned in verse 10 who followed Jesus to the end and witnessed His death on the cross (Luke 23:49). We also saw the body of Jesus being laid in the tomb (Luke 23:55).
At about 3:00 p.m., Jesus died. In Judea, the day began at sunset, so the Sabbath was approaching. Therefore, there was not much time, and only a simple burial was possible. Since there was not enough burial, spices may have been provided to give Jesus a more generous burial (Luke 23:56).
They arrived at the tomb with the spices they had prepared (24:1). The fact that they were preparing the spices meant that they were going to paint the corpse of Jesus means that they did not expect Jesus’ resurrection at all. They didn’t believe it. But they had true love for Jesus. They were ready to respond to His love because He had changed their lives and given them freedom, peace, and hope. That love spurred them into action. Jesus loved each and every one of us. We want to respond to Jesus’ love.
On their way to the tomb, they realized they hadn’t asked for someone to remove the tombstone. In the parallel Gospel of Mark 16:3 says they were all discussing, “Who is there to roll that stone out of the entrance of the tomb?”
Jewish tombs were covered with large stones that could barely be rolled by a few men. It was a funny situation. However, they didn’t go home, but went to the tomb anyway, saying, “What should we do with that big stone?” But what happens when they get to the tomb? A stone had been rolled aside from the tomb (v. 2)!
It was an angel who rolled the stone. God had already sent an angel to solve the grave stone that they were worried about. We may in some cases be inclined to step out once the stone has been removed. But when we go out, when we act, we can experience God’s work of removing the great stone(difficulties).
What do we mean by “big stones”? What are the obstacles and difficulties? God plans to remove the stone blockages from our lives. Also, the devil tries to show us a “big stone”. Even small stones (challenges) are made to look like big ones , and he tries to turn us back or stop us in our faith walk. But instead of looking at the big stones and the big problems, let’s lift our eyes and trust in the greater God who can solve our problems. At that time, I believe that the events of “a stone being rolled out of “the grave and difficulty being removed” will be the works of God in our lives and in the work of the church.
2) Faith in the Resurrection
When the women arrived at the tomb, they found that the body of the Lord Jesus was not there (v. 3). While they were at a loss and wondering what had happened, two angels appeared (v. 4). and told them “Why do you look for the living among the dead? 6 He is not here; he has risen! (v.5,6)
In Jerusalem there is a tomb (garden tomb) where Jesus is said to have been buried. I went there seven years ago when I traveled to Israel. At the entrance of the tomb, one word was written in English. “He is not here. He has risen.” But in English, the present perfect tense is used instead of the past tense. The present perfect tense in English is used when something that happened in the past continues to the present. So here it means, “He is not here. Jesus Christ is not in this tomb. He is risen and is still alive.” The emphasis is on the present, not the past. What inspiring words!
I entered the tomb. The tomb was still empty. It is in emptiness that there is hope and life. If there is something that says, “This is the bones of Jesus,” it would be a big problem, disappointment. Today too, many things try to keep Jesus Christ in the tomb. Many people are trying to find Jesus among the dead. The famous 19th century philosopher Nietzsche said, “God is dead.” Unfortunately, this word has affected many people today.
If we are not careful, depending on the situation, we may also be unbelieving in looking for Jesus in the grave, not as a living one, but as a deadone.
In our daily life, do we really believe that Jesus is still alive? Are we excited to wake up each morning to have the risen Jesus with us? We wonder what wonderful things will happen on this day. If not, we may be searching for Jesus in the grave.
When we come to church, what kind of work do we expect God to do because the resurrected Jesus is here? If we don’t expect much, if we’re used to nothing happening, we may be looking for Jesus among the dead.
They went to the tomb to anoint the body of Jesus with spices. As long as we search hard in the grave, we will never meet the risen Jesus. Jesus defeated death, was resurrected, and is still alive today. Hallelujah! So don’t look for Jesus in the grave, among the dead.
If the resurrected Jesus “is not in the grave,” then where is he? He is with us now. Jesus made a promise to his disciples in Matthew 28:20. ” Behold, I am with you always, even to the end of the world. “
They remembered the words of Jesus(verse 8). ” The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinners, crucified, and on the third day rise again. ”
It is very important to remember the words of Jesus and the words of the Bible. It is not an exaggeration to say that it is of crucial importance. This is the turning point in the Christian life. We will win or we will lose? Walk in life or walk in death?
They did witness the death of Jesus (Luke 23:49). They also saw the body of Jesus laid in the tomb (Luke 23:55). Therefore, it was “death” that controlled them. But now, when they heard the words of the angel, they remembered what Jesus said. It is the word for life. This is resurrection news. It’s a reversed message. They remembered that word. This is the secret of victory. By remembering God’s words, we were able to break with death and break with the past. Life began to reign over them.
But when we cannot remember the Word of God, we are unfortunately defeated. Why? This is because we will be forever bound by death and the past, and live under the control of the real situation and environment. No hope comes from it. We will be walking in unbelief. But if we remember and receive the words of Jesus, faith will be given to us. Even if we can’t see it right now, we can believe that something is changing. And we can have hope and live a life overflowing with resurrection life.
3) Resurrection witnesses
What did the women do after they remembered what Jesus said? They reported to others about the resurrected Jesus (verses 9,10). We too should tell others the big news, the amazing good news, that Jesus was risen and is alive. This is the mission of the church. If we don’t preach the gospel, if we don’t preach it, there are people who won’t hear the gospel of Jesus Christ. We are chosen as witnesses of Jesus Christ. Through the resurrection of Jesus, we are given life to overcome death. However, this world has no true life and is ruled by death. Like those women, we want to spread the gospel.
The apostles did not believe their story. They did not believe (v. 11). However, these apostles experience the truth of their testimony by meeting the resurrected Jesus. When we talk about the resurrected Jesus, people may distrust and disbelieve. But there will also be events like Peter in verse 12. There will be people who are interested in what we are saying and will stand up and come to church and look in. Therefore, the important thing is to report, speak, and tell others about the resurrection of Jesus that we know and experience.
Jesus defeated death, rose from the dead, and is still alive! Jesus is the victor. We who believe in Jesus can also become victors. So stop looking for the living Jesus in the grave and among the dead. Remember that Jesus is with us now.