Summary: As the women made their way to the Garden Tomb, their lives were filled with uncertainty. There were more questions than answers. Their hopes and dreams were shattered, buried with Jesus three days ago. However, when they arrived at the tomb, hope was provided through the resurrection!
The Glory in Resurrection
Mark 16: 1-8
It had been a difficult time for those who loved and followed Jesus. The disciples and the faithful women were aware of His death upon the cross. No doubt their minds were filled with unanswered questions – what will we do now; where do we go from here; is there any hope left? The one they had believed and trusted in was gone. The aspirations they had just a few days earlier are now distant memories, as doubt and fear replace the joy and hope they once felt. This was definitely a difficult time for those who walked with the Lord.
Although they were unaware, hope was not lost. Jesus had died on the cross three days earlier. They knew he had been buried in a borrowed tomb, and they had yet to make the miraculous discovery of His glorious resurrection. While it appeared Jesus had suffered great defeat, the women would soon discover His greatest triumph. A morning that began with dread, fear, and uncertainty would quickly become a morning of discovery, joy, and assurance in the risen Christ.
Through the eternal record of Mark’s gospel, we are able to journey back to the borrowed tomb where Jesus had been buried. As we examine the details recorded in the text, I want to consider: The Glory in Resurrection.
I. A Morning of Uncertainty (1-3) – We must remember the context of this fateful morning. The events of the past few days had left Jesus’ followers numb and confused. Their faith had been tested and they were searching for answers. Things had not happened as they thought they would. What can we discover about this morning of uncertainty in the lives of these women?
A. Their Pain (1) – And when the sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, had bought sweet spices, that they might come and anoint him. Keep in mind that these were women who had enjoyed a close relationship with Christ. They believed He was the promised Messiah. They had heard the words of the Lord, and witnessed the miracles. Their lives had been transformed by this Man, and yet He had been taken away, crucified and buried.
It seemed as if their hopes and dreams had been buried with Him. The one in whom they placed their trust had been taken away, seemingly much before His time. He had not fulfilled all they hoped He would. The Romans were still in power and their lives were now in jeopardy for their faith. They have come to do all that they feel is left – anoint His body, and provide a means of honor and respect for the one they loved so dearly. We see a picture of utter devastation and intense pain in their hearts.
B. Their Passion (2) – And very early in the morning the first day of the week, they came unto the sepulchre at the rising of the sun. They rose very early in the morning and came unto the tomb. They were committed to doing all they could to ensure a proper burial for one who had been so abused and rejected. No doubt they were concerned for their safety, as Jerusalem was in an uproar concerning Christ. They must’ve seen the crowds as they cried, Crucify! They must’ve known the words of disdain spoken as the crowds passed by His battered body on the cross. Some had heard the words of the malefactors as they railed on Him to prove His deity and power. I’m sure the images of those horrid scenes were still fresh in their minds, but they were undeterred. They loved the Lord deeply and were only concerned with bringing what honor they could to Him.
The passion of these women challenged my heart. We live in a day where most have no desire to honor the Lord. We live in a “take it or leave it” society. Many fail to consider the great sacrifice Jesus made on our behalf. As we are reminded of our Lord’s sacrifice and resurrection, may our passion for Him be renewed and a new-found commitment be born within our hearts! Acts 20:24 – But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God.
C. Their Perspective (3) – And they said among themselves, Who shall roll us away the stone from the door of the sepulchre? As the women made their way to the tomb, they were concerned with their physical limitations. They were not looking for a resurrected Lord, but focused on a stone that stood in the way. They had not come expecting to find the Lord risen as He said, but were consumed with the apparent problem at hand. They could see the death, but not the deliverance.