On this day almost 2000 years ago, the course of human spirituality was altered forever.
The below picture is of the tomb of the Prohpet Mohammed, founder of Islam:
The below pic is the tomb of Buddha, founder of Buddhism:
The below pic is the tomb of Confucius, founder of Confuciusanism:
The below is a statue and tomb commemorating the life of Laozi, the found of Taoism:
Below is the tomb of Charles Darwin, founder of the theory of evolution and accidental starter of the post-modern movement:
And below is an artist’s concept of what the tomb of Jesus looked like, founder of Christianity:
Easter is derived from the German word Oster, which means rising of the sun. You see, there was something important about the Sunday morning after Passover that year almost 2000 years ago. As the sun was coming up, Jesus’s mother Mary and Mary Magdalene were approaching the grave in order to finish preparing the body of Jesus for permanent interment. When they arrived, the body was gone. Cold case, without a trace except for an angel telling them He was no longer there. The Jewish elite, days before, had convinced Pilate to put a guard of soldiers in front of the tomb to prevent the disciples from snatching the body and then claiming He had rose from the grave as He had predicted. In the event that a prisoner, or in this case a dead Jesus, was to escape captivity, then the soldier(s) in charge would be killed. They would have defended the tomb and the lifeless body inside with their life. And let’s be honest. A group of wandering men living off of not much more than charity and Jewish welfare customs did not have the means of which to pay the soldiers that they would leave their post. However, as the angel of the Lord opened the tomb, and the guards passed out in fear of the angel, Jesus rose and walked out. When we look at the other major religions in the world we see that there are 2 major differences between them and Christianity. The first is that although we have hints and ideas as to which tomb or cave Jesus’s body was originally placed in, we don’t have concrete evidence of where it is was actually. There are no venerated remains. No special bone or hair or teeth. There is no trace of His body. While the founders of the other major religions have remains, tombs, and shrines. We can’t place a shrine or temple or tomb over Jesus’s body, we don’t know where it is. Or maybe it is because He is indeed resurrected and we won’t be able to see His body until we arrive into His presence at the final judgement. Secondly, the other major religions in the world use relativity, morality and behavior to achieve success. While Christianity is based on acknowledgement that there is One God and we are not Him regardless of how good or bad a person is, that one cannot be good enough when compared to pure holiness and nothing we can do can earn us eternal life, and that good behavior is outwardly trying to appease God or man while God looks and desires to connect with each individual person’s heart. Fundamentally, Christianity says “I couldn’t, but He did for me, and I am redeemed in Him through Jesus”. Other religions say “He won’t, but I will try, and I might or might not make it”. So as we consider the implications of eternity from the empty tomb of Jesus, how will you react? You will either accept His sacrifice on your behalf or you will reject it. Would you rather try to earn some level of eternal life or accept it freely as promised for those who believe in Jesus’s resurrection? The choice is yours, not your spouses, or your friends, or your parents. You and you alone must react and decide what to do with Christ’s death and resurrection. And as the sun rose this morning, what significance does this day have for you?
To start at the beginning of the Easter/Holy Week series, click here
What is next: click here