Summary: Sadness, depression, hopelessness, helplessness, loneliness, fear, and anxiety are destroyed - Because of an empty tomb.
Because of an Empty Tomb
Bishop Melvin L. Maughmer, Jr.
John 20:11-18 “But Mary stood without at the sepulchre weeping: and as she wept, she stooped down, and looked into the sepulchre, And seeth two angels in white sitting, the one at the head, and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain. And they say unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? She saith unto them, Because they have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him. And when she had thus said, she turned herself back, and saw Jesus standing, and knew not that it was Jesus. Jesus saith unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou? She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away. Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master. Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God. Mary Magdalene came and told the disciples that she had seen the Lord, and that he had spoken these things unto her”.
Matthew 28:6 says “He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay”.
When think of the word empty according to the dictionary we understand it to mean vacant, unoccupied, uninhabited, untenanted, clear, free, bare, desolate, deserted, abandoned, containing nothing, without contents, unfilled, not filled, void. The dictionary says empty means containing nothing; not filled or occupied. The dictionary also says some synonyms are meaningless, aimless, worthless, useless, idle, vain, insubstantial. Therefore; when we look at it we come up with a negative concept. Empty is not a good thing when it comes to our bank accounts or to our gas tanks. Empty is not a good thing when it describes the condition of our soul. But it when comes to a tomb that's supposed to be full, containing the dead body of a man who claimed to be the Messiah, the Son of the living God, it is a good thing. It's a very good thing. Today I want to show you the blessings of an empty tomb.
Jesus’s death on the cross, His resurrection from the dead 3 days later, and ascension into heaven are all vital parts of what we celebrate today on what is called by many Easter but what is truly known as Resurrection Sunday. What is utterly amazing is with His death on the cross, Jesus paid the price for the sin of humanity. With His resurrection, Jesus conquered sin, death and the grave leading the way into eternal life. With His ascension Jesus is standing on the right hand of God making intercession for you and me.
I want to focus on this: - Mary stood outside by the tomb weeping – she was sad and in despair, she felt hopeless, helpless, discouraged, confused, and afraid. and as she wept she stooped down and looked into the tomb. And she saw two angels in white sitting, one at the head and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain.
Then they said to her, Woman, why are you weeping? See they already understood what happened, they already understood the importance of an empty tomb, but Mary was dealing with her emotions. She remembered how the Roman soldiers enjoyed scourging Him, brutalizing Him, mocking Him, and humiliating Jesus publicly and she felt that they had desecrated the grave and stole His body and hid it or worse so she said to them, Because they have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid Him”. She and the disciples had forgotten Jesus promise that He would rise again on the third day. Luke 24:5-8 states the angels asked, “Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but is risen! Remember how He spoke to you when He was still in Galilee, saying, ‘The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again.’ And they remembered His words”
Verses 14-17 says “And when she had thus said, she turned herself back, and saw Jesus standing, and knew not that it was Jesus. Jesus saith unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou? She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away. Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master”. She went from a state of not knowing what happened to Jesus, from being afraid, discourage, hopeless, helpless, sad to calling Him Master at the empty tomb.