By Rathi Egbert, SMM Editor.
Who will roll away the stone for us?
That was no ordinary stone. It was a boulder in every sense. It was large. It was heavy. It was meant to securely seal the opening. It could not be budged.
The group of women who were making their way to the tomb early in the morning after the Sabbath were troubled. They had a task to carry out. They needed to embalm the body of Jesus with the spices that they had prepared.
But along the way to the tomb, none of them could focus on or speak of anything else other than the stone that stood in the way.
Has anything ever stood in the way of your pursuit? Did it so consume your thoughts and discourse to the point where you could not see beyond it?
This is precisely what happened to these women.
They had walked with Jesus. They had followed Him everywhere they could. They had listened closely to His deep teachings. They just wanted to be near Him. They knew that He understood their hearts.
But then, He was brutally crucified and died an excruciating, agonizing death right before their eyes. Now, there was this very large stone before them.
What could they possibly do to move that stone? Who could help them?
Turns out all that they needed to do was look up!
Then they looked up, saw that it had been rolled back—it was a huge stone—and walked right in.
They saw a young man [an angel] sitting on the right side, dressed all in white. They were completely taken aback, astonished.
He said, “Don’t be afraid. I know you’re looking for Jesus the Nazarene, the One they nailed on the cross. He’s been raised up; He’s here no longer. You can see for yourselves that the place is empty.
Now – on your way. Tell His disciples and Peter that He is going on ahead of you to Galilee. You’ll see Him there, exactly as He said.”
The angel delivered a friendly reminder to the women of what Jesus had disclosed to them earlier in Galilee. Jesus had told them all about why He would need to die and that He would be raised to life on the third day (Luke 24:6b-7).
How did the women react to this reminder? Luke 24:8 says it all: “Then they remembered that He had said this“.
Reminders help us to fine-tune our focus especially when we get sidetracked. The Resurrection of Jesus reminds us of His ultimate expression of love, sacrifice and sovereignty over life and death. His Resurrection reminds us that all of our pain, sorrow, worry and agony is temporary; and that through Him, we have forgiveness; salvation; victory; eternity; hope; everything.
God was at work in that tomb; and nothing could have stopped what happened behind the stone; not even the stone itself.
Let the stones, boulders or whatever it is that seems to be in the way serve as a reminder that He is at work in our lives…just as He was at work in what is now the empty tomb that once held Jesus: Our Risen Saviour; Our Soon-Coming King!
He is risen! He is risen indeed! Happy Resurrection Day!
Have a listen to a beautiful song by Natalie Grant called “Alive”. The lyrics are brilliant and spot on!
Discussion: Has the Holy Spirit nudged your heart with any gentle reminders in your reflections on the death and resurrection of Jesus? Go ahead and share below!