Summary: How often does God take us to a place in our walk with Him where we are confused and don't understand? How often do we then find ourselves remembering what God has told us and the understanding begins to flow?
1But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they went to the tomb, taking the spices they had prepared.
First day of the week – Sunday… this is why Christians observe worship of Christ on Sundays instead of what is traditionally believed to be the Sabbath which is Saturday. As Christ informed the Pharisees, that HE was Lord of the Sabbath and that the Sabbath was created FOR Him… so should we see this day of resurrection as a day that celebrates Jesus who is Lord of the Sabbath… Sunday’s are NOT sacred because of the day, but Sunday’s are sacred to Christians because of what we celebrate on this day… we celebrate JESUS on this day!
At dawn they went to the tomb, taking spices they had prepared…
Who went? See verse 10 [read v.10 here]
Why were they going to the tomb with spices? If we look back to v.50-56 in chapter 23 we can see that Jesus died as the Sabbath observance began, and these ladies had prepared spices to anoint Jesus’ body, but were prevented from doing this because they were observing the ‘no work’ prohibition… and they rested on the Sabbath.
Can you imagine how LONG that day must have been for them… it was possibly the longest Sabbath observance they had ever endured. Oh how their hearts were breaking… after what they had seen in Jesus and then what had happened to Him… their thoughts had to be that ALL hope was lost…that Jesus was gone!
Think about this in a modern day circumstance… how many times do we find ourselves believing that all hope in a situation is lost… that defeat is certain… that evil has won… I know we have all been there at one time or another.
These women showed great love for Jesus in that even though they were distraught and had more than likely lost hope… we find them getting up early on a Sunday morning to go down to the tomb and anoint Jesus’ body with spices and ointments… they were performing a labor of love in the face of what they believed to be certain defeat…
We too face those situations… how do YOU respond? Do you respond in love for your Savior? Or do you throw in the towel and hang your head in self-pity? We can learn a lot from the love of these women.
2And they found the stone rolled away from the tomb, 3but when they went in they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus.
An amazing discovery! However, I can imagine their hearts sinking when they came upon the tomb with the stone rolled away. What had happened? Who could have done this? Why would they do this? Where is Jesus’ body?
Has God ever brought you to a place in your walk with Him and you simply did not understand or could not comprehend what he was trying to do… only to realize later that He had been pointing you to that particular time all along? The next few verses reveal this to these women…
4While they were perplexed about this, behold, two men stood by them in dazzling apparel. 5And as they were frightened and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, "Why do you seek the living among the dead?
"Why do you seek the living among the dead? Basically what these angels were saying was “Why are you looking for a dead man?
Seems like a totally insane question to the rational human being. After all they were in a grave yard [so to speak] and they were looking inside a TOMB specifically made to hold dead people… so why would these men ask that blatantly insane question…
I can imagine that they thought to themselves, “Why do you THINK we are looking for a dead man… it was just this past Friday when we saw our Lord Jesus the Messiah, whipped, beaten, ridiculed and mocked. We saw him crucified on a cross… and a spear pierced into his side… we saw Him take his last breath… we saw the dead body… we helped to wash it… we help to carry it into this VERY tomb!”
These women were totally out of sync and did not understand what was happening…
6He is not here, but has risen. Remember how he told you, while he was still in Galilee, 7that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men and be crucified and on the third day rise." 8And they remembered his words,
These men then FINISH their question/statement… Why are you looking for a dead man? Jesus is NOT dead! He is risen just like He told you would happen… remember? Back in Galilee when He told you?