Resurrection Day Celebration!
By Mickey Keith on March 08, 2014
Mark 16:1-3 “When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go to anoint Jesus’ body. 2 Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb3 and they asked each other, “Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?”
These precious women were disciples of Jesus, who had come alone on Sunday, the first day of the week, following the Jewish Sabbath…This one had been the longest Sabbath ever, because Jesus was crucified and laid in a grave…Their hopes and dreams were buried with Him. They didn’t expect to find a risen savior; they came to anoint a dead man…to finish the work begun on Friday evening when his body was taken down from the tree.
They said among themselves...”Who will roll away the stone?” They knew a massive stone had been set along with the Roman seal which dictated that anyone tampering with the grave would be punished by death. They knew a Roman guard of 4 soldiers working in 8 hour shifts had been set to watch the grave, lest anyone try to steal the body. Their orders were simple…guard the tomb. If you fall asleep, or leave your post, you will be killed!
It seems that Jesus enemies had more faith in a resurrection than his disciples, although He said, “Like Jonah in the fish’s belly, He would be in the earth for 3 days”…
You see, Jesus just borrowed the grave for the weekend! He gave it back when he was through with it! His burial was just a planting...For on the third day, the stone was rolled away, and the grave could not hold Him! He conquered death, hell and the grave! Rev. 1:18 “I am He that liveth, and was dead; and behold, I am alive forevermore, Amen, and have the keys of hell and death.” This is why we celebrate today on the first day of the week! Resurrection Morning! He is Risen…He is risen indeed!!
The women were so sad that morning, coming to anoint Jesus as a final act of love. When all of a sudden…
Mark 16:4-7 NIV “But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away. 5As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed.
6 “Don’t 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 laid him. 7 But go, tell his disciples and Peter, ‘He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.’”
“Come and See---Go and tell” He is risen..He is not here!
When Jesus was crucified on Friday evening, He was pronounced dead and loving hands lowered Him from the cross…Imagine that his mother held his head in her arms one more time. Not soft white flesh from the hand of God, but bloody red flesh from the cruel hands of men…
The only man- made thing in Heaven will be the scars on Jesus hands and feet!
It all seemed so dark and painful… His mother and the other Jews began to mourn for Him, forgetful of His promise to raise from the dead!
Nichodemus and Joseph of Arimethea used nearly $5,000/100 lb. of spices to anoint his body…Hoping to somehow honor a great man…a dead man…Perhaps hoping to atone for their fearfulness as they followed Jesus by night and from afar!
They weren’t expecting a resurrection; they were trying to honor a great man, teacher, prophet. But Jesus Christ is more than just a teacher or prophet. More than a philosopher on the level of other men of antiquity…He was, He is, and He ever will be the Son of the Living God! He is not only the Son of God, He is God the Son…Alpha and Omega, Beginning and End! He is the rose of Sharon, the Great I AM, the way, the truth and the life…no man comes to the Father except through Him. He is the Author and Finisher of my Faith, the captain of our salvation…His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father and the Prince of Peace…of His Kingdom There shall be no end!!!
He is the Word of God that became flesh and dwelt among us. He is King of Kings and Lord of Lords! He is the Lamb of God that takes away the sins of the world. He was bruised for our transgressions, crushed for our sins and the punishment that brought us peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed!
To the children of Israel He was the cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night…He was the rock in the wilderness that provided water …He is the 4th man in the fire, He is the way-maker, the blind man healer…the leper cleansing man from Galilee …He is a sea-walker,, a miracle worker and He is the same yesterday, today and forever! There is nothing too difficult for Him.
Put your trust in Him today. He will bring you out! He alone can bring you to salvation, for there is no other name given under Heaven whereby you must be saved.
Today, we are faced with a choice – to accept his death, burial and resurrection as the work necessary for your salvation, OR reject Jesus and go through life without a substitute on the cross, doomed to face eternal separation from God.
While Jesus Body lay cold in the tomb, His Spirit descended in to Hades. There, I’m sure Satan was celebrating his `victory’ over Jesus. He thought he had silenced the eternal voice that said “Let there be light”, that taught God’s Kingdom principles and said, “Neither do I condemn thee, go and sin no more”…He had killed the one who taught men how to love one another …the one who raise the dead and walked on water. Satan had seen young Jesus at the temple at age 12, and was nearby when the Holy Spirit descended on Jesus at the Jordan River… He heard God’s voice say, “This is my beloved Son, and in whom I am well pleased.” He watched as Jesus healed the sick, opened blind eyes and fed the multitudes…but at last He thought He had won…
Judas Iscariot was commissioned…the garden arrest...the Kangaroo trial…the angry mob…It was so easy…Jesus was silent, didn’t lift a finger in opposition! It was almost as if He was willing to die….
Then his thoughts were interrupted by a voice like waves crashing on the shore—“I’ll take those keys to hell and death Satan...you have killed the only innocent one not subject to death…I was the perfect sinless sacrifice to die for all the sins of mankind…You have no legal right over me…YOU ARE DEFEATED!!
Satan was rendered impotent that day…Jesus then led the saints out of Paradise into the Heavens where they now wait for us to join them!
Col.2:15 “And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross”.
On that morning on the first day of the week, a power greater than lightning surged through that little tomb. The ground shook, graves in the region burst open, and the life-giving Spirit of God Almighty super-charged the mortal body of Jesus! His mortal flesh took on immortality, the corruptible became incorruptible!
Angels shining as lightning appeared and the soldiers standing guard fell as dead men! The huge stone was rolled away- hot for Jesus to come out, but for us to go in and see that He was alive!! This was God’s Divine stamp of approval on the work of the cross!
Jesus arose a CHAMPION on the third day..Death, Hell and the grave have no power over Him, and He gives that power to us. John 14:19 “Because I live, you shall live also!”
John 11: 25,26 ““I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; 26and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?”
The book of Matthew alone records where Jesus predicted his own resurrection 7 times! The only religious leader to do so…Buddha, Mohammed ---their tombs still hold remains…but outside Jerusalem is a simple garden tomb where tourists line up to see nothing! The Tomb is Empty!!