The news of Jesus’ victorious resurrection must have filled the streets at a rapid pace! I wonder if many people learned of his burial site and went to look at it for themselves to get a glimpse of the empty tomb. Even today, many trek to Israel to see where Jesus’ body allegedly lay, but I do not know of anyone who hangs out at His grave site. The tomb is empty for a reason.
John’s account of the resurrection in chapter 20 reveals a woman who found out the good news for herself.
As Mary Magdalene approached the tomb where Jesus was laid, she found the great stone rolled away. She saw the grave clothes. She saw two angels sitting in the tomb. She was disturbed where they had taken her Lord, as she cried in the garden that beautiful morning. She turned around from the tomb, and Jesus himself stood in front of her. But she didn’t recognize Him…until He said her name. Then she heard her name spoken by the man who had liberated her soul. She had been delivered from seven demons, and had been given a life of freedom in exchange. Her eyes had been open to the risen Savior standing before her!
Can you imagine her excitement? Immediately she knew it was Him and went to tell the disciples.
There are a few things to ponder from this passage.
Mary Magdalene went to the garden to care for the body of Jesus.
You may still be tending to the wounds of your past. Hanging out in yesterday’s tomb. But just as it was asked of Mary, thequestion remains “why are you weeping?” Jesus has already won. You have victory over any pain or question in your life!
Jesus was standing right in front of her, and she didn’t notice.
Her grief and pain overshadowed her senses and clouded her judgement. The same man who had freed her was there to offer it all again! Jesus is so patient with us as we go about our lives worried over this and that, or fearful for the worst, yet He is standing right in front of us. He is waiting for us to look around and notice all that He has accomplished on our behalf.
She knew her Master’s voice.
One word was all it took to send her running to announce the good news to the disciples. One word dried her eyes from sorrowful tears. One word reminded her of every miracle in her life.
Do you hear the Savior saying your name? He is. His desire isn’t that you weep. His desire isn’t that you tend the wounds of yesterday. His desire is that you open your eyes to Him. He is right in front of you.
The tomb is empty for a reason. It is supposed to stay that way. It isn’t to be filled with past hurts, regrets, sins, or the like. You shouldn’t be hanging out there or bringing flowers to what is dead. Jesus came to give life. Abundant life. (John 10:10.) In Him we are a new creation. (2 Cor 5:17)
Ephesians 2:1-7 explains that “even though we were dead in our trespasses, we were made alive in Christ.” And we are “raised up us together and sit together in the heavenly places with Christ Jesus.”
YOU were raised up. YOU have experienced resurrection! YOU are seated with Christ! Jesus was a grave robber. Jesus didn’t go back to His tomb. Mary didn’t. Neither should we.
****If you would like to receive Jesus as your Savior, wanting to be free and not hang out at those grave places in your life, simply:
Admit your sins to Him. He is a loving God. He already knows the places in your life that need change and He still loves you.
Believe in your heart that He died for you and was raised from the dead.
Confess with your mouth that He is God. Tell Him! He has been waiting in anticipation for you accept the gift He has for you!
You can pray something like this:
Dear Jesus, I know I’m not perfect. I’ve certainly messed up along life’s way. Forgive me of my wrongs, and help me to do what’s right. I believe that you died for me and was then resurrected. I know you are God. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Welcome to the family of God! You just made the best decision ever. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org so we can help you with your next steps in Christ! We can help you find a church where you can grow with other believers!
About the Author:
With Jesus, Charisse Jenkins is full of faith, a wife; married to her best friend, Kurt, mother of four dynamic children, and a pastor’s wife. She is passionate in prayer and in worship, and loves to read the Word. Her desire is to see God’s people walking in the true freedom that Jesus’ blood paid for, and to live the Christian life with boldness and strength. She loves pretty things and enjoys moments of quiet and reflection.