The Meaning of a Living Hope in an Empty Tomb!
Matthew 28:1-7 New American Standard Bible
Jesus Is Risen!
28 Now after the Sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to look at the tomb. 2 And behold, a severe earthquake had occurred, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled away the stone and sat upon it. 3 And his appearance was like lightning, and his clothing as white as snow. 4 The guards shook from fear of him and became like dead men. 5 And the angel said to the women, “[a]Do not be afraid; for I know that you are looking for Jesus who has been crucified. 6 He is not here, for He has risen, just as He said. Come, see the place where He was lying. 7 And go quickly and tell His disciples that He has risen from the dead; and behold, He is going ahead of you to Galilee. There you will see Him; behold, I have told you.”
The Word of God for the Children of God. Gloria! In Excelsis Deo! Alleluia! Amen.
“He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay.” – Matthew 28:6
Jesus’ death and resurrection are not only celebrated at Easter. Long before Jesus walked to the cross, Scripture tells of the hope we find in Him. His resurrection story began in the first notes of Scripture, and He is apparent throughout the entirety of the Bible.
“‘He is Risen’ means that Jesus was raised from the dead, and now is with God in heaven,” explains Christianity.com, “It means He has overcome death as those who believe in Him will have eternal life.”
Every day we wake to a new morning carries divine purpose to serve as a channel of Christ’s love. The world is consumed with itself, and therefore crumbling inward as the days go on.
But our hope isn’t in the world!
Our hope is not in the grave!
Rather our living and everlasting hope is in the One who utterly defeated death on our account and one day soon, WILL return to take us home for all eternity.
Now, how about that for Good News to start your day?
Where Is This Verse in the Bible?
“Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen!” – Luke 24:5b-6a)
The Gospel of Mark also records,
“‘Do not 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 had laid him” (Mark 16:6-7).
All four Synoptic Gospels tell of the empty tomb, Jesus’ resurrection, and Mary Magdalene’s discovery of Jesus’ empty tomb.
The Gospels differ slightly in the details included in their recording of the day’s events.
“Luke includes a second angel,” the NIV Application Commentary explains, “but Matthew and Mark focus only on the one who speaks for both.”
Luke and John both wrote some of the disciples ran to the tomb, Luke has specifically mentioned Peter.
John made a point to mention the disciples still did not understand the full scope of the Scriptures being fulfilled in Jesus’ resurrection.
Take into consideration the way in which John concluded his Gospel:
“Jesus did many other things as well. If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written” (John 21:25). Through the Holy Spirit’s divine revelation through the writings of these apostles, we receive irrefutable confirmation of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection.
What Is the Context of the Phrase “He Is Not Here for He Is Risen”?
“The angel said to the women, ‘Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples: ‘He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him.’ Now I have told you.” (Matthew 28:5-7)
Mary Magdalene and Mary (Matthew 28:1) discovered Jesus’ tomb was empty the Sunday after He had been crucified and buried in the tomb. Shocked and worried about what may have happened, Jesus’ teaching about this day was not the first thing to cross their minds. An angel provided comfort and clarity to them by telling them what had happened and giving them their next steps.
It’s quite one thing to listen to teachings and believe, but another to experience their unfolding in the moment. Their reaction was pure joy, and in Matthew’s Gospel account they ran to do as the angel said. On their way to tell the disciples what had happened, “Jesus met them” (Matthew 28:9). He greeted them!
Matthew 28:8-10 New American Standard Bible
8 And they left the tomb quickly with fear and great joy and ran to report to His disciples. 9 And behold, Jesus met them [a]and said, “[b]Rejoice!” And they came up and took hold of His feet and worshiped Him. 10 Then Jesus *said to them, “[c]Do not be afraid; go, bring word to My brothers to leave for Galilee, and there they will see Me.”
Imagine their state of awe! Matthew wrote,
“They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him” (Matthew 28:9).
The awakened, awakening hope welling up deep inside these women upon their discovery and reunion with their Messiah is linked to the wellspring of hope we too can find in Jesus everyday as we wake as sinners, forgiven and rescued by our salvation in Christ Jesus. “Do not be afraid,” Jesus assured them, “Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me” (Matthew 28:10).
Matthew wrote of a rumor purposefully spread to blame Jesus’ disappearance from the tomb on His own disciples, claiming they took His body. “And this story has been widely circulated among the Jews to this very day” (Matthew 28:15). Luke specifically mentioned Peter looking in the tomb, even holding the strips of linen, but not understanding what had happened.
When Jesus met his disciples in Galilee, some doubted it was Him.
Often is our hope stands directly right in front of us, but we are too blind to see.
In our search for concrete answers, we sometimes entertain “believable” rumors instead of placing our whole faith in the truth of God’s word. “While other stories will be concocted to try to cover up the truth (Matthew 28:11-15),” the NIV Application Commentary explains, “God’s word of revelation through the angel tells the real story—Jesus has indeed been raised from the dead.”
When Did Jesus Say He Would Rise from Death?
“The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes and be killed, and after three days rise again.” – Mark 8:31
Jesus said He would rise from the dead. He spoke it Himself, as recorded by Matthew (Matthew 16:21; 17:23; 20:19), Luke (Luke 9:22) and Mark (Mark 8:31). Jesus also spoke of His death and resurrection indirectly (Matthew 12:39; 16:4; 21:42), and in conversation with others. “Two separate witnesses testify in two very different ways to Jesus’ statement during his lifetime that if his enemies destroyed the temple (of his body), he would build it again in three days (John 2:19; Mark 14:58; Matthew 26:61),”
God’s plan from the beginning of everything was to rescue us from sin. Isaiah 53 and Hosea 6:1-2 point towards the resurrection. The fulfillment of Old Testament prophecies of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection is an important foundation of the Christian faith. It further reveals the character of our great God to keep His promises, His unsurpassable love for us, and the alive and active nature of Scripture as a means in which He communicates with us.
How Does Matthew 28:6 Solidify the Foundation of Christianity?
“Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle and set apart for the gospel of God—the gospel he promised beforehand through his prophets in the Holy Scriptures regarding his Son, who as to his earthly life was a descendant of David,” – Romans 1:1-3 NIV
Through the Holy Spirit’s divine revelation on Paul’s pen, Jesus’ identity is again confirmed. John chose to begin his Gospel account by stating Jesus was with God in the beginning, and through him all things were made (John 1:1-5).
The anonymous author of Hebrews confirmed “Jesus is the same yesterday and today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8).
The empty tomb solidifies the foundation of Christianity.
Jesus did not just appear on the first page of the New Testament. He is present throughout the entirety of Scripture. His life, death, and resurrection not only fulfill the Old Testament prophecies, but irrefutably prove the great love of our ABBA in heaven to rescue each one of us from the penalty of sin, which is death.
“The believers who saw the risen Christ with their own eyes and touched him with their hands spent the rest of their lives taking about the resurrection,” wrote Marshall Segal for DesiringGod.org.
In Christ, we have access to God through prayer and His Word, through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit gifted to us by Christ, Himself. The One, True, Triune God is glorified through the empty tomb. Only He could execute such a miracle. The Author of Life, Defeater of Death, the very Breath of God.
Through Christ Jesus, because of His life, death and resurrection, we find our salvation. Life lived within the love of Christ is full of God’s grace, forgiveness, mercy and compassion. When we live, walk out our lives in obedience to His will, as Jesus did all the way to the cross, we are promised joy and fulfillment.
What Hope Can Christians Find in This Biblical Truth Today?
“All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the end of every age.” – Matthew 28:18-20
In the beginning, God created us in His image, with dignity and a purpose our enemy is constantly trying to distract us from.
When sin succeeds, destruction abounds. We form idols, mistakenly believing we can find true and lasting satisfaction in achievements, people, and material things. Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross ultimately defeated death. We can each now choose to embrace salvation in a living Christ, come to ABBA for forgiveness of our sins, daily, embracing a new hope, a life in which we find true satisfaction.
Christ’s resurrection gives us a new and ever living and everlasting hope for today, for our future. Jesus will return again. He will right all wrongs and mend all hurts. Death will cease to exist, and we will go home to heaven with Him.
“We can enjoy the stability of resurrection hope,” writes Mitch Chase for TGC, “because the promises of the world to come will never waver or fail.”
When our daily circumstances are too hard to bear, when we can only see the darkness, taste our tears, we can submit them to God through Christ, knowing He hears and sees us, and that the pain and struggle of this world is temporary.
The Will of God is that we should all see the SUN rise!
The Will of God is that we should all see the SON rise!
The Will of God through Christ Jesus is we should all have life in abundance!
By His Resurrection, we can truthfully say: God’s Will can never be thwarted!
A PROMISE IS A PROMISE …… OUR GOD IS FOREVER A FAITHFUL GOD!
Happy Easter to everyone – FOR THE MORNING HAS COME!
Happy Easter to everyone – FOR THE SON IS RISEN INDEED!
In the name of God, the Father and God the Son and God the Holy Spirit,
Let us Pray,
Abba, Father! Jesus, Savior! Spirit, Breath of God! One, True, Triune God! Glory up! Praise You for this day, which we walk out because of Your creative hand. Praise for the purposes You have for us today, and each day we wake to breathe on this earth. Jesus, in Your resurrection, we find hope for each day. In You we are given a supernatural strength, perspective, and joy that cannot be shaken or stolen. May our daily lives reflect our love for You and serve as a channel of that love to everyone You have placed in our lives. Thank You for resurrection hope.
In Jesus’ Powerful and Ever-Living Name We Pray,
Gloria! In Excelsis Deo! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Amen.