- Jeremiah 31:1-6
- Matthew 28:1-10
Text “He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay.” Matthew 28
Oh, how I love Easter Morning, not only does it bring an end to the season of Lent but also it brings an end of a week of doom and gloom. But you say, Ken, it is no bad thing to remember the cost our Saviour had to pay, had to go through not just physical but also mental stress and we see this in the Garden of Gethsemane, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.” Matthew 26:39.
When you go into Church and you hear the one who leading worship say from the pulpit, “Hallelujah, the Lord is risen,” then the Church responds with “He is risen indeed” followed by singing that great hymn by Charles Wesley, “Christ the Lord is risen today, Alleluia!”
The Church seems so bright; the flowers fill the air with the beauty of expectation of new life, new beginning, and new hope. We have every right to rejoice for we know that we worship a risen Saviour. It is not often you get such good News from a cemetery, it is the last place you would expect to get such. You can feel this sense of euphoria in Jeremiah 31:4, “I will build you up again and you will be rebuilt, O Virgin Israel. Again you will take up your tambourines and go out to dance with the joyful.” In these days of self isolation not just for ourselves but also for the sake of others, in these days when our world has suffered so much it is good to note that there will good days ahead, there is a future to look forward to, there is life to look forward to too.
What is the message of the Empty Tomb?
THE EMPTY TOMB POINTS THAT JESUS IS REALLY THE SON OF GOD.
and who through the Spirit of holiness was declared with power to be the Son of God by his resurrection from the dead: Jesus Christ our Lord. Roman 1:4
Time after time Jesus had been trying to get through to his disciples that he must suffer, be put to death on a cross – that shameful horrible death and on the third day rise again. To be honest I am not sure if I would have grasped what he was trying to get through to me. I like these dear people would have been looking for a Messiah that would deliver me and my people from the yoke of Roman rule. Yes, as a disciple, I had witnessed the blind receive their sight, been with him as the deaf heard for the first time and lepers being cleaned and returned to normal life with their families again and also seen his best friend Lazarus come alive out of the tomb after being dead four days! Yes I heard when he told Martha that, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies.” John 11:25
Christ showed his authority over the winds and the waves and to top it all he upset the powers that be when he claimed to be able to forgive sins. The boldest claim of all when he claimed to have the power to lay down his life and take it back again. It was the fulfilment of that last claim that authenticated the truth of all of His teachings and declared Him once and for all to be the God-Man. He is the eternal Son of God.
THE EMPTY TOMB POINTS THAT HIS DEATH ON THE CROSS MADE ATONEMENT FOR OUR SINS
“He was delivered over to death for our sins and raised to life for our justification.” Romans 4:25. T.T. Crabtree points out, “The substitutionary death of Christ on the cross perfectly met the requirement of a just and holy God who will bring every sin into judgment. Christ’s death on the cross accomplished all that God required to redeem the souls of men and women and saved us from the penalty sin which is death, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 6:23
THE EMPTY TOMB POINTS THAT HE IS OUR LIVING SAVIOUR.
Jesus is for real, He is who He claimed to be, the Son of God.
Because He lives we can have a relationship with Him and you can only do that with someone who is alive. Such knowledge should enable us to worship Him and have fellowship with Him, “For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them.” Matthew 18:20. The living Saviour offers us the gift of eternal life now if we repent of our sins and receive Him as our Saviour and surrendering to Him as our Lord.