Summary: This Easter we celebrate the empty tomb.
He Has Risen
Please stand as we read God’s Holy Word.
1 On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb.
2 They found the stone rolled away from the tomb,
3 but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus.
4 While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them.
5 In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, "Why do you look for the living among the dead?
6 He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee:
7 ’The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’"
8 Then they remembered his words.
You may be seated.
When the body of Jesus was placed in the tomb, a large stone was rolled in front of it. This was done not to keep Jesus in, but to keep people out. Remember when Jesus appeared to His disciples in a locked room? The stone could not keep Jesus in the grave. The purpose of the stone was to keep people out until the third day.
When the women came to the tomb with spices, they found that the stone had been rolled away and their Lord’s Body was missing. I imagine that many thoughts ran through their heads. Their primary thought must have been who has taken the body of our Lord Jesus?
Two angels appeared to them and said: “Why do you look for the living among the dead?” Often Christians are looking for God among the dead. They study the Bible as a mere historical book and go to church as if going to a memorial service. Christ is alive! He lives! He sits at the right hand of the Father. He reigns in the hearts of all true believers and Christ is the head of His Church.
Are we looking for Christ among the living today? Does Christ live in you? Does His light shine through you so that others can see it? Is Christ not only your Savior, but also your Lord? We can see His work all through out the world today, in our lives, in our churches and by all the answered prayers.
Because Christ was resurrected, we have the blessed assurance that we too will be resurrected. Because we have that assurance should we continue to live that same life that we lived before knowing Christ? By no means!
1 What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase?
2 By no means! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?
3 Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death?
4 We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.
5 If we have been united with him like this in his death, we will certainly also be united with him in his resurrection.
When Christ died on the cross, He took on all of our sins, so that we would have a new life in Him. Through Christ, we have died to sin and have been given the power by the Blood to live a new life. We are to live a righteous and holy life. We are to live a life that others can see Christ in us. Just as Christ was crucified on the cross and resurrected, we too have died to sin and have been resurrected in a new life in Christ. Just as Christ has won the victory over sin, death and Satan, we too have that same victory. Rejoice in the Lord our God and praise His name.