But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they came to the tomb, bringing the spices which they had prepared. Luke 24:1 (NAS)
This past weekend another Easter Sunday has come and gone and it was great to see the visitors and extended family members come and join us as we again visited the tomb of Jesus. The very foundation of Christian faith is based on the resurrection of Jesus, therefore each opportunity we gather together we are in a sense visiting the tomb of Christ, the empty tomb!
Scripture tells us a number of visitors came to or were at the tomb of Jesus on the day of His resurrection and what their reactions were to this amazing event. There were guards there that morning, having been posted the day before, supposedly to prevent the disciples from stealing Jesus’ body. Their reaction was one of extreme fear, so much so that they were described as “becoming like dead men.” Mary Magdalene came and found the tomb empty and immediately went to Peter and John telling them that Jesus’ body had been removed to an unknown location. She misunderstood what had happened until Jesus Himself appeared and provided an explanation to her. Peter and John both raced to the tomb upon hearing of the Lord’s absence, with Peter entering the tomb taking in all that the scene portrayed. Peter is described as marveling at the events that had transpired, while John is said to have seen and believed what he saw.
The question that begs to be asked at this time is “What is your reaction to your visit?” Are you filled with fear, misunderstanding, wonder, or belief? It’s easy to see how some may have any one of these reactions. Fear comes from lack of faith; misunderstanding comes from a lack of hearing and knowing God’s word, while belief results from experiencing the Word of God; and wonder or marvel comes from amazement at what God is willing and capable of doing. The more we visit the tomb, the greater chance for belief and marvel and a lesser chance for misunderstanding or fear. Won’t you visit as often as you can?
Copyright © 2007, Nolan P. Rutter