The Empty Tomb

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Mark 16:1-6

When the sabbath was over,
Mary Magdalene, Mary, the mother of James, and Salome
bought spices so that they might go and anoint him.
Very early when the sun had risen,
on the first day of the week, they came to the tomb.
They were saying to one another,
“Who will roll back the stone for us
from the entrance to the tomb?”
When they looked up,
they saw that the stone had been rolled back;
it was very large.
On entering the tomb they saw a young man
sitting on the right side, clothed in a white robe,
and they were utterly amazed.
He said to them, “Do not be amazed!
You seek Jesus of Nazareth, the crucified.
He has been raised; he is not here.”

John 20:2-9

So she ran and went to Simon Peter
and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and told them,
“They have taken the Lord from the tomb,
and we don’t know where they put him.”
So Peter and the other disciple went out and came to the tomb.
They both ran, but the other disciple ran faster than Peter
and arrived at the tomb first;
he bent down and saw the burial cloths there, but did not go in.
When Simon Peter arrived after him,
he went into the tomb and saw the burial cloths there,
and the cloth that had covered his head,
not with the burial cloths but rolled up in a separate place.
Then the other disciple also went in,
the one who had arrived at the tomb first,
and he saw and believed.
For they did not yet understand the Scripture
that he had to rise from the dead.

Below is a reconstruction of what happened from the book, The Truth About the Shroud of Turin (Regnery, 2010), pp. 189-191, by my friend Robert K. Wilcox. No matter how many times I read this, it never fails to move me to tears.
The tomb, a rocky chamber carved out of a hillside, a stone rolled against the door, is dark and silent. Lying on a slab is a long, rectangular cocoon, the hills and valleys of which are clearly the contours of a human body. The body of Jesus lies there, face up, a ribbon around the head and chin to keep the mouth closed, packed on all sides with bags of spices.
At some unknown moment in the dead of night, the air in the tomb becomes electric.
At first the vibrations are minute, the sort that could be detected by sensitive twentieth-century instruments; then they dramatically increase until they shake the ground and blow the boulder from the door.
A glow, faint at first, emanating from the shroud suddenly intensifies until rays of light shoot through the threads, star-filled golden rays filling the tomb and pouring out the door.
For thirty seconds — no more — the blinding, pulsating movement continues.
The source of the activity is the corpse, the body, somehow being revitalized, dematerialized, its mass being converted into energy, pure energy, which in the material world is radiant white light.
The body rises from the slab through the cloth, hovers for a moment in midair, then disappears.
The cocoon collapses. Darkness returns. Shouts of “Earthquake! Earthquake!” diminish as the guards run for their lives. And in the air, the distinct odor of scorched linen.
When dawn comes, the women in Jesus’ life draw tentatively toward the tomb, look in the opening, and see the shroud unopened, still wrapped, but definitely deflated. The body is gone. At sunrise the disciples come. John enters the tomb, puts his hand on the cloth, and presses it to the slab. Jesus is there no longer. The disciples and the women quickly gather up the burial garments — the chin band is still in the shroud — and the spice bags and leave before the Romans can return.
At another time, in another place, when they have a chance to gather their wits, they will discover the figure of their master imprinted on the inside of the shroud. The images would be faint, probably not as dark as the passage of time and exposure to air have made them; and the images would be negative ones, a phenomenon that would also become clearer with the passage of time. Regardless, they would view these images as holy — imprints of their precious Lord. The disciples would pay more attention to the images on the shroud if they weren’t already waiting, with the greatest anticipation, for Jesus himself, who, before his death, had promised to visit them after he rose from the dead.

Our Lord is Risen!

Colossians 3:1-4

Brothers and sisters:
If then you were raised with Christ, seek what is above,
where Christ is seated at the right hand of God.
Think of what is above, not of what is on earth.
For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.
When Christ your life appears,
then you too will appear with him in glory.

A Joyous Easter to all!

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0 responses to “The Empty Tomb

  1. discerningeye

    Reblogged this on Cinderella's Broom.

  2. Amen….
    It always amazes me how patient Jesus was with His disciples. They never (during his time with them) fully understood a thing He was saying!
    GOD bless him!
    “Speaking the truth in times of universal deceit is a revolutionary act.” Geo. Orwell

  3. Reblogged this on kommonsentsjane and commented:
    Reblogged on kommonsentsjane/blogkommonsents.
    The Empty Tomb – Our Lord Has Risen.

  4. Why make stuff up? Steve Clint to the facts TD as recorded.

  5. He is risen. He is risen, indeed!

  6. It is important to get the Bible right – not wrong. In Matthew 28:2 we learn the stone was not blown away, nor was it removed so Christ could freely walk out as Matthew Henry thought. That idea would have meant Mary and the others with her, would have saw Him walk out!
    Here’s the verse: And behold, there was a great earthquake, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone and sat on it.
    Had the angel not rolled away the stone the assumption would have remained, He was still in the tomb!
    Remember, the accounts are all slightly different and seem to contradict, so you need to read all accounts to accurately see what happened. Mary and the others arrived and the angel removed the stone so they could see for themselves that He had risen!

  7. Happy Easter to everybody!

  8. Amen! He is Risen! He is Risen indeed!

  9. Stephen T. McCarthy

    HiYa, FOTM Peoples!
    I wanted to take a couple minutes to pop on over to wish a HAPPY ‘HE IS RISEN’ DAY to all y’all here at FOTM. I know that for the vast majority of us who regularly visit this site, Easter Sunday is very significant. It’s not just another Sunday to most of us here.
    Hopefully this music video link (below) is going to post correctly. If not, maybe you could give me an assist, Dr. E?

    ~ D-FensDogG
    STMcC Presents ‘Battle Of The Bands’

    • It worked for me.
      Happy Easter all!

    • I’ve never heard a song like that before!
      To God be the glory!

      • Stephen T. McCarthy

        MomOfIV ~
        Ha!-Ha! I’m not sure if that means you liked it or… not. :^D
        But either way, I wish you a Happy Easter. (I don’t think we’ve ever interacted before, but I’ve been impressed by many of your comments which I’ve come across here at FOTM.)
        ‘LIVING WATER (The Surfer’s Mass)’ is highly unusual. I’ve always described it as sounding something like “The Beach Boys Singing About Jesus”. It’s one of my very favorite Gospel albums in my collection. (But then, I grew up in “Dogtown” — Santa Monica / Venice — and sand, surf, sun, and the harmonies of The Beach Boys are pretty much ingrained in my soul.)
        The one famous member of The Malibooz is Walter Egan (of the hit song ‘Magnet And Steel’ fame, circa 1978). The group consists of members from the same church, and I had no idea Walter Egan had become a Christian until I luckily discovered this album.
        Bless And Be Blessed!!
        ~ Stephen
        STMcC Presents ‘Battle Of The Bands’

        • Thank you Stephen for your kind words.
          Yes, it definitely reminds me of the Beach Boys singing gospel.
          The song took me to a place I’ve never been before: surf and gospel.
          I love music and I thank you for introducing me to a new genre of music.
          My philosophy is, if it glorifies the Lord, I’m open to it.
          God’s blessings to you.

  10. The Resurrection of Jesus Christ was a NUCLEAR EVENT and it really happened: The Holy Shroud of Turin is authentic. Up to some 500 people testified they saw the Risen Christ in the five weeks following His Crucifixion. All but one of His Apostles went on to martyrdom in the years that followed: They chose DEATH rather than deny their Master.
    All of these things check out and stand up to the most minute and needling scrutiny! The passage of 1,985 years—which does not yet total 750,000 days—does nothing to erase these facts. (As a matter of fact, physical things fade over time but mentally apprehended moral truths do not).
    I had the pleasure of attending an Easter Vigil Mass last night. The beginning of it was dark and everyone held a candle (I did not). Past the seven readings and the Gospel, the priest baptized three young ladies, and then he confirmed them and another young woman. This was definitely worth the time and was encouraging to me. What Christianity shows those who can see it (or admit to it) is that, the more it is persecuted over time, the more it grows. No other phenomenon can say that: People may empathize with, say, persecuted Buddhists, but that, in and of itself, does not compel the observer to become a Buddhist. Not so Christianity: Some observers of the persecuted, in time, become Christian. Neither Fascism nor Communism can say this. This is because Christianity is phenomenologically different from all other movements of History, and because it is animated by Our Lord and the Holy Ghost themselves. The Victory is certain; The date and time are known but to God.

    • Steven . . . . I am bought to tears at reading . . . “The Victory is certain; The date and time are known but to God.” If we can just remember that and hold fast to that thought, no matter what trials beset us, we will be victorious.

  11. Pingback: The Empty Tomb – The Blogging Hounds

  12. @stevenbroiles. We all do. And in this late hour we must remember, we must inscribe it in our hearts.
    He is risen, Amen.

  13. Wishing you all a blessed day, and praying that we righteously end the abuse and suffering of so many precious children all over the world.

  14. No matter how you look at it …. The THIRD Temple has already BEEN “built”
    JOHN 2:20 King James Bible “Then said the Jews, Forty and six years was this temple in building, and wilt thou rear it up in three days?”
    Mathew 27:51 And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;
    The Second (third?)Temple veil was DESTROYED as Jesus died, the LAMB of GOD sacrificed on the Cross, and the THIRD TEMPLE was “reared up” on the THIRD DAY, Easter Sunday. JESUS is the THIRD TEMPLE if you are a CHRISTian.
    and then …..
    Per Peloubet’s Bible Dictionary 1925 there (ALREADY) were THREE physical Temples in Jewish history:
    FIRST Temple built by Solomon, for a little more then 400 years, from @ B.C. 1000 to B.C. 588. From Solomon to the Babylonian exile.
    SECOND Temple Zereubbabel’s or the Temple of the Return, built with the aid of the Prophets Zechariah and Haggai, lasted nearly 500 years years, from it’s completion B.C. 515 to B.C. 20. We see by the description of Ezra 6:3 that this Temple was about one third larger then Solomon’s.
    THIRD Temple Herod’s Temple lasting only @ 90 years from B.C. 20 to it’s destruction by Titus, August A.D. 70.
    The whole area or platform was called the Temple. Solomon made it about 600 feet square, containing 12 acres. This area ,according to Josephus, was nearly doubled when Herod built the THIRD temple.
    King Herod the Great spent 30 years refurbishing Zorobabel’s temple (the second temple) just in time for the coming of Christ, who not only prophesied that the temple would be destroyed — which is was in 70 A.D. by the 21-year-old Roman general Titus (son of Vespasian), but Christ also condemned all further Hebrew temple worship forever.
    According to the ‘Jewish Encyclopedia’, Solomon built the 1st temple approximately 832 BCE, and stood per Rabbinic sources, for 410 years until 422-BCE. HOWEVER, their own records indicate that the 2nd Temple was built in 586 BCE (two temples stood simultaneously at one time, for 164-years?) Irony is doubled when you get the small nugget of truth that ‘there is actually no physical proof that the Solomon Temple ever existed other than the Hebrew books that form the earliest parts of the Christian Bible.
    THEN, you have Herod tearing down the 2nd Temple and rebuilding the 3rd Temple in 19-BCE (18th year of his reign), and it stood until 70-CE. when the Romans destroyed it. Since Herod TORE IT DOWN TO THE LAST BRICK, EXPANDED THE COURTYARD, etc., this is NOT the 2nd Temple (redux) but is, in fact, THE 3RD TEMPLE.
    Hate to break it to all the Christians, but that 3rd Temple you keep waiting on being built, that will indicate the end of time – yeah, IT WAS BUILT AND THEN DESTROYED OVER 1950-years ago!!!
    ‘Jewish Encyclopedia’, Solomon built the 1st temple approximately 832 BCE, 2nd Temple was built in 586 BCE. THEN, you have Herod tearing down the 2nd Temple and rebuilding the 3rd Temple in 19-BCE (18th year of his reign), and it stood until 70-CE. when the Romans destroyed it. Since Herod TORE IT DOWN TO THE LAST BRICK, EXPANDED THE COURTYARD, etc., this is NOT the 2nd Temple (redux) but is, in fact, THE 3RD TEMPLE.
    Hate to break it to all the Christians, but that 3rd Temple you keep waiting on being built, that will indicate the end of time – yeah, IT WAS BUILT AND THEN DESTROYED OVER 1950-years ago
    King Herod the Great spent 30 years refurbishing Zorobabel’s temple (the second temple) just in time for the coming of Christ, who not only prophesied that the temple would be destroyed — which is was in 70 A.D. by the 21-year-old Roman general Titus (son of Vespasian), but Christ also condemned all further Hebrew temple worship forever.
    Therefore, the temple mount (Mt. Moriah in Jerusalem) is not the holiest place on the globe.
    Question: “What was the significance of the temple veil being torn in two when Jesus died?”
    Answer: During the lifetime of Jesus, the holy temple in Jerusalem was the center of Jewish religious life. The temple was the place where animal sacrifices were carried out and worship according to the Law of Moses was followed faithfully. Hebrews 9:1-9 tells us that in the temple a veil separated the Holy of Holies—the earthly dwelling place of God’s presence—from the rest of the temple where men dwelt. This signified that man was separated from God by sin (Isaiah 59:1-2). Only the high priest was permitted to pass beyond this veil once each year (Exodus 30:10; Hebrews 9:7) to enter into God’s presence for all of Israel and make atonement for their sins (Leviticus 16).
    Solomon’s temple was 30 cubits high (1 Kings 6:2), but Herod had increased the height to 40 cubits, according to the writings of Josephus, a first century Jewish historian. There is uncertainty as to the exact measurement of a cubit, but it is safe to assume that this veil was somewhere near 60 feet high. An early Jewish tradition says that the veil was about four inches thick, but the Bible does not confirm that measurement. The book of Exodus teaches that this thick veil was fashioned from blue, purple and scarlet material and fine twisted linen.
    The size and thickness of the veil makes the events occurring at the moment of Jesus’ death on the cross so much more momentous. “And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit. At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom” (Matthew 27:50-51a).
    So, what do we make of this? What significance does this torn veil have for us today? Above all, the tearing of the veil at the moment of Jesus’ death dramatically symbolized that His sacrifice, the shedding of His own blood, was a sufficient atonement for sins. It signified that now the way into the Holy of Holies was open for all people, for all time, both Jew and Gentile.
    When Jesus died, the veil was torn, and God moved out of that place never again to dwell in a temple made with hands (Acts 17:24). God was through with that temple and its religious system, and the temple and Jerusalem were left “desolate” (destroyed by the Romans) in A.D. 70, just as Jesus prophesied in Luke 13:35. As long as the temple stood, it signified the continuation of the Old Covenant. Hebrews 9:8-9 refers to the age that was passing away as the new covenant was being established (Hebrews 8:13).
    In a sense, the veil was symbolic of Christ Himself as the only way to the Father (John 14:6). This is indicated by the fact that the high priest had to enter the Holy of Holies through the veil. Now Christ is our superior High Priest, and as believers in His finished work, we partake of His better priesthood. We can now enter the Holy of Holies through Him. Hebrews 10:19-20 says that the faithful enter into the sanctuary by the “blood of Jesus, by the new and living way which he opened for us through the veil, that is, through his flesh.” Here we see the image of Jesus’ flesh being torn for us just as He was tearing the veil for us.
    The veil being torn from top to bottom is a fact of history. The profound significance of this event is explained in glorious detail in Hebrews. The things of the temple were shadows of things to come, and they all ultimately point us to Jesus Christ. He was the veil to the Holy of Holies, and through His death the faithful now have free access to God.
    The veil in the temple was a constant reminder that sin renders humanity unfit for the presence of God. The fact that the sin offering was offered annually and countless other sacrifices repeated daily showed graphically that sin could not truly be atoned for or erased by mere animal sacrifices. Jesus Christ, through His death, has removed the barriers between God and man, and now we may approach Him with confidence and boldness (Hebrews 4:14-16).
    JESUS, the THIRD temple, “raised up” in THREE DAYS. JESUS CHRIST IS the THIRD temple.

  15. google the parable of The Folded Napkin. will make a good sermon in any church.

    • According to the story being circulated via email, the head covering over the body of Jesus Christ in the grave was a neatly “folded napkin.” It goes on to say that among Jews of the time a master would let his servants know whether he was finished eating or coming back to the table by the way he left his napkin. If he tossed it aside, he was finished. If he folded it, he was not finished and would return. The hidden message in the story is that by laying his “napkin” aside and neatly folded Jesus was saying he was coming back.
      We have checked numerous Bible study sources and have found nothing about this alleged Jewish custom of the folded napkins. We did not find any Bible scholars who have used this story and illustration about the meaning of the folded napkin. Additionally we talked with a Jewish rabbi friend of’s who has been a life-long Orthodox Jew, a Jewish scholar, and lives in Jerusalem, Israel, and he said he’d never heard of it
      The only references to this story that we found are from Internet postings and emails that seem to have originated in 2007.


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