There is a simplicity about this moment in time. There is also much that is complicated. There are many burdens on us, many concerns we have about our past and our future, many concerns we have for others future. All those things that roll around in our heads before we head to sleep. So much that is complicated. Yet there is a simplicity to this day. A simplicity of a celebration of the most beautiful moment in the history of humanity.
3 women in mourning go to the tomb where their friend is buried. Many emotions are building up in them, many concerns about what is to come. So much that was hoped for has been wiped out in a moment. They reach the burial sight and see that something is out of place. The stone that blocks the tomb has been rolled away. They enter the tomb and find that their friend is not there, he has gone. There immediate thoughts would no doubt have been that some injustice has occurred. Someone has stolen the body and taken it for some reason. Robbing them of the opportunity to mourn. Two strangers with lightning clothes appear next to them and respond to the women’s surprise with a question –
Why do you look for the living among the dead?
This is not the question on the women’s minds but it now is. For as the shiny clothed men say Jesus told them about this. In Matthew 16.21 Jesus foretold the events of the past week. That he would be delivered into the hands of sinners, crucified and on the third day raised again. The women at the reporting of the shiny men remember Jesus words.
They reported all that had happened to the 11 apostles. They do not believe the women. Yet Peter, the one who denied Christ, goes back to the tomb and is lead to wonder what happened.
There is a simple fact. A man who was alive was killed and then he came back from the dead. It is simple. The result is also simple – whatever this person came to say and do is clearly more important than anything else in history. For no one else has done this. Whatever he has said and then goes onto say is given an authority above all else. There is much that is complicated and much that needs to be discussed. Yet there is something simple and beautiful about this day where we remember a moment in time that changed all other moments forever.
24 On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. 2 They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, 3 but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. 4 While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. 5 In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, ‘Why do you look for the living among the dead? 6 He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: 7 “The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.”’ 8 Then they remembered his words.
9 When they came back from the tomb, they told all these things to the Eleven and to all the others. 10 It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the others with them who told this to the apostles. 11 But they did not believe the women, because their words seemed to them like nonsense. 12 Peter, however, got up and ran to the tomb. Bending over, he saw the strips of linen lying by themselves, and he went away, wondering to himself what had happened.