Summary: Christ Jesus turned Mary’s tears of sadness into tears of joy.
Why Are You Weeping
John 20: 1 - 18
Intro: I remember times when I was going through my divorce that I would just weep. People who saw me do this would ask, "Why are you crying?" --- For the life of me, I coudn’t answer. I didn’t know whether it was because I was happy that I was free or sad because I was free. VS. 1 & 2 are the introduction – setting the scene – third watch (3am – 6am) – customary – spirit had departed by now.
I. (VS. 1 & 2) How did she know without looking that Jesus was gone?
A. Had to be forced entry – tomb was sealed.
B. Jumped to conclusion / assumed the worst.
C. We never jump to conclusions or assume anything, do we? --- What do we do when we don’t have all the facts, make them up.
II. VS. 3 – 10 – confirmation – YUP! --- He’s gone!
A. God with questioning and doubts – curiosity not only kills the cat but it causes faith to grow.
B. Greek text tells us that the grave clothes did not appear “taken off” or “put off” – lying there in regular folds asif the body of Jesus’ had evaporated out of them.
C. Reaction – Read VS. 10 – nothing I can do – go back to regular routine.
III. Dramatic and theological heart of the story is VVS. 14 – 18.
A. Only in John’s gospel does Mary weep and has angels at head and foot.
B. Reader knows who Mary sees. – Only truly sees when Jesus speaks her name.
C. Remember some years ago they had those puzzle pictures – don’t see anything until someone tells you. – Mary saw but not until Jesus spoke her name did she understand.
Conclu: The message of Easter is that God came to us, to earth, to turn our tears to joy. Sadness is swallowed in victory and Christ lives. Like the butterfly from the cocoon, Christ Jesus emerges victorious.