Summary: God will move the stones in our lives that prevent us from performing all that He desires.
Who Will Roll The Stone Away?
Text: Mark 16: 1-6
16:1 When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go to anoint Jesus’ body. 2 Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb 3 and they asked each other, "Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?"
4 But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away. 5 As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed.
6 "Don’t be alarmed," he said. "You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. 7 But go, tell his disciples and Peter, ’He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.’"
8 Trembling and bewildered, the women went out and fled from the tomb. They said nothing to anyone, because they were afraid.
Both Marys and Salome had purchased spices to anoint the body of Jesus. This was the custom and while making their way to the garden tomb, they probably discussed the events of the past few days. Possibly crying still in despair and mourning the loss of Jesus. They must have become distraught once they realized they had made no arrangements to have the stone moved from the entrance of the tomb. In their distressed state of mind they had completely forgot about the stone covering the door. We know they knew of the stone, because Mark 15: 47 tells us that the two Mary’s had watched Joseph of Arimathaea place the body of Christ in the tomb and roll the stone over the door.
45 And when he knew it of the centurion, he gave the body to Joseph.
46 And he bought fine linen, and took him down, and wrapped him in the linen, and laid him in a sepulchre which was hewn out of a rock, and rolled a stone unto the door of the sepulchre.
47 And Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses beheld where he was laid.
They came to the sudden conclusion that there was no way they were going to move that stone. They were going to need help. "Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?" They asked. They were beside themselves! They were not thinking very clearly, because instead of making some arrangement to have the stone moved, they kept going to the tomb. As they approached the tomb it must have been a tremendous relief to discover the stone rolled back from the door. They must have asked themselves "who moved the stone? They would not understand the significance of this, until they stepped inside to administer the spices. Once inside they were astonished to find a young man dressed in white. Could this be the one who moved the stone? Who was this young man in white raiment? According to Matthew 28:1-6 he was the angel of the Lord.
2 And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it.
If you understand the Old Testament, you know that the Angel of the Lord is a manifestation of God Himself.
What a glorious thought that God, who just a few days earlier had to turn away from His son because of the sin He had taken upon Himself, stood at the entrance of the tomb and by a mighty earthquake moved the stone that had been keeping His son in the grave. Jesus could have moved the stone for He was just as divine, but God Himself chose to move the stone to demonstrate His love for Jesus. Jesus could have moved the stone from the tomb; however, you and I cannot even begin to move some of the stones that have rolled into our lives!! A man (Joseph of Arimathaea) had placed the stone in front of the tomb of Christ; however, God moved the stone so Jesus could rise again. Satan has placed stones in our lives that have caused us to become entombed, yet God stands ready at the entrance of our entombed lives ready to "Roll and Rock". Ready to roll the rock right out of our lives that we might be resurrected to newness of life!!
Let me elaborate for a moment about some of the stones that have us trapped in tombs.
I. Stone of Disobedience: The Angel in Matthew 28:7 had instructed the ladies to "go quickly and tell".