THE EMPTY TOMB THAT IS FULL OF HOPE
But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, I know that you are looking for Jesus who has been crucified, He is not here, for He has risen, just as He said, come, see the place where he lay. Matt. 28:5, 6.
INTRODUCTION: There was a story of a family watching a movie of the life of Jesus on television. This six-year old daughter was deeply touched as the film realistically portrayed Jesus’ crucifixion and death. Tears ran down the little girl`s face as Jesus was taken from the cross and laid in a borrowed tomb and how the guard was set to watch the tomb. Suddenly a big smile broke on her face and she said with great anticipation, “Now comes the good part”. Yes, the resurrection from the grave is indeed the good part of history of God’s love to mankind because the resurrection of our Lord changes everything.
Christianity begins where other religions end-with the resurrection of Jesus from the tomb. Other religions may point to a founder as Christianity, but they also point to their founder’s grave. Only Christianity is able to point to an empty tomb. Some tombs are famous because of the people they contain. The tomb of Jesus is the most famous because it is empty.
The implication of the empty tomb is the importance of Christ’s resurrection for the church today.
The resurrection of Jesus Christ settles absolutely the identity of the Son of God (Rom. 1:4): Other religious leaders may have performed miracles, but the resurrection of Christ distinguished Him as it publicly identified Him as the Son of God. Failure to be convinced by His resurrection from the dead means you will not be convinced by anything. He was crucified because He said He was the Son of God. God justified His claim by His resurrection that proved that He was the Son of God.
The resurrection of Jesus Christ sets authoritative plan for the church (Mark 16:15, 19, 20): A plan is the proposed outline that you are to follow. It gives orders with special emphasis. The resurrected Lord is the One who is qualified to set the outline for the church so that there will be no confusion. After His resurrection before ascension, Jesus gave the church a marching order to witness His death, burial and resurrection to the whole world. He promised His power, and presence as the church engages in the great commission. God is not just asking us to do this for Him, He is asking us to do this with Him.
The resurrection of Jesus Christ proved convincingly that the power of the grave is broken completely and could no longer retain its prisoner: The Bible said that the tomb was sealed and to break the seal is punishable by death. However, the testimony of the witness at the sepulcher revealed that what nobody could do, God did. He broke the power of grave on the third day and assures believers in Christ of the resurrection of the saints. Jesus rose from the grave. He conquered death and the evidence is indisputable.
The resurrection of Jesus Christ declares that there are no situations or problems too great for God to handle: By raising Jesus from the death, God displays His power over impossibilities. Give Him your difficult situations, be it in finance, health or family, none are as difficult to overcome as death. The resurrected Jesus has power to solve our problems. If Jesus can reverse death, he can reverse any situation. The resurrection of Jesus Christ presents us with the supreme exhibition of God’s power. No problem is too hard for Him to solve, no provision is too hard for God to supply and nobody is too difficult for God to save. His resurrection supplies an amazing intercessor for you (Heb. 7:23-25).
The resurrection of Jesus Christ secures justification for Believers: Jesus offers justification through His resurrection (Rom. 4:25). During the time that the body of our Lord was laid in the tomb, there was no one on earth who could be sure that the work of redemption was an accomplished task. The fact that He rose from the dead satisfied the claims of divine righteousness and had met every requirement of the holiness of God. Christ’s atonement for our sins can be evidenced only by His bodily resurrection. God declared His acceptance of the work of His Son by raising Him from the dead thus completing the work of justification. If Jesus did not resurrect, remission of sin would be void, redemption would not be possible and will yet be in our sins (Rom. 4:24).
In conclusion, the resurrection of Christ from the dead was the approval on what Christ had done. It was God’s “Amen” to Jesus` cry from the cross, “it is finished”