Summary: We want to consider the great story of the resurrection from the point of view of the women who came to the tomb with no hope of a resurrected Jesus.
Back in 1851 two missionaries, one English and the other American, were walking past the
temple of Siva in Tanjore, India. They noticed the people carrying out one of the brass idols.
It was a hot sunny day and the idol had become heated. One of the worshipers happened to
touch it, and feeling that it was very warm, concluded that it was sick with a fever. The Rajah,
or king being present immediately sent for a physician. He came and told them not to be
alarmed for the god was well. The king called him a fool and sent him away. He ordered that
another physician be called. When he arrived and examined the idol, he told them the god
was very ill with a high fever and would soon die if remedies were not immediately applied.
He directed them to put the idol in a shady place, and wash him with cool liquid. When it was
cooled off the physician pronounced him cured, and the Rajah gave him three thousands
rupees for saving the life of the god.
It is not everyday that a man can save a god, and he was no doubt delighted with his
accomplishment. We can laugh, of course, at the ignorance of men who could seriously
believe in a god capable of getting sick, dying, and needing to be rescued by men from the
jaws of death. Any god who can get sick and die is no god at all. This ought to be as obvious
to us as any truth is. Those who make statements that God has died only reveal that the God
of whom they speak is no more than a man made idol, and not the God of Biblical revelation.
It is true that God, out of the great love with which He loved us, became incarnate in human
flesh, and submitted to the death of the cross. He did literally go through the experience of
dying, but the vital fact, the great fact of Easter, is that He went through it. He did not
remain in death, but rose to live forever. Jesus said to John in Rev. 1:18, "I am he that liveth,
and was dead; and behold, I am alive forevermore, Amen and have the keys of hell and
death." Christ has the keys of hell and death because He experienced both, and triumphed
over both. A poet has written,
Yes, He is risen who is the First and Last,
Who was and is, who liveth and was dead.
Beyond the reach of death He now has passed.
Of the glorious church the glorious head.
This is more than the message of Easter, for this is the foundation of the whole of
Christianity. Anyone is free to disbelieve, and even deny it, but none are free to honestly bare
the name of Christian who do so. There is no Christianity if the resurrection is not true. If
men have lost faith in the idols of their self-made religion, let them cry out that their god is
dead, but let us not confuse their petty idols with the Living God of Revelation. Those who
have a God who is dead need to be even more enlightened, and recognized that their god was
We want to consider the great story of the resurrection from the point of view of two
groups of people. Both groups are believers, but Mark's account first deals with the
experience of the women, and then of the men. We want to consider the male responses in
another message. For now we will consider the experience of the women on this day of
resurrection. The first thing we see is
I. DEVOTION DISPLAYED. v. 1,2.
These few loyal women have endured the agony of watching their Lord die a violent death,
and they watched Him being placed in a tomb hastily before the Sabbath began. How much
real resting they did on that Sabbath we do not know, but our text shows that as soon as it was
over these devoted disciples made a purchase. Late in the evening they bought spices for the
purpose of going to the tomb in the morning, and anointing the body of this one they so loved.
They harbor no hope of the resurrection, for they would not spend money for spices to
anoint His body if they had any hope that it would be alive soon. They acted in the belief that
this was the end, and that His body would forever lay in the tomb, or at least until the
resurrection at the last day, which all faithful Jews looked for. They are so grateful, however,
for all that He was, and all that He did for them, that they must express their devotion, and