55 – Glorious Resurrection
And when evening had come, since it was the day of Preparation, that is, the day before the Sabbath, Joseph of Arimathea, a respected member of the council, who was also himself looking for the kingdom of God, took courage and went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. Pilate was surprised to hear that he should have already died. And summoning the centurion, he asked him whether he was already dead. And when he learned from the centurion that he was dead, he granted the corpse to Joseph. And Joseph bought a linen shroud, and taking him down, wrapped him in the linen shroud and laid him in a tomb that had been cut out of the rock. And he rolled a stone against the entrance of the tomb. Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses saw where he was laid.
When the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices, so that they might go and anoint him. And very early on the first day of the week, when the sun had risen, they went to the tomb. And they were saying to one another, “Who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance of the tomb?” And looking up, they saw that the stone had been rolled back—it was very large. And entering the tomb, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, dressed in a white robe, and they were alarmed. And he said to them, “Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has risen; he is not here. See the place where they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter that he is going before you to Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.” And they went out and fled from the tomb, for trembling and astonishment had seized them, and they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid.
- Shroud: A length of cloth used to wrap a body in
- Spices: Substances which smell good and which are used to prepare a dead body
What do you think was going through the minds of the women as they came to the grave?
What is striking about Pilate’s response to the death of Jesus?
If the book of Mark had ended with the death of Jesus, it would not really be good news, just a biography of a special man who did and said lots of amazing things and was killed because of them. But that is not the end of the story.
A man by the name of Joseph asks Pilate for the right to bury the body of Jesus. Crucifixion could take a long time, and therefore Pilate was surprised that Jesus had died so quickly. Once again, we see the control of Jesus over the whole situation – although he is being killed, he is also choosing to give his life and deciding the hour of his own death. Therefore, with respect and love Joseph wraps him tenderly in cloth and puts him a tomb.
After the day of rest finished, some of the women who followed Jesus came to the grave. They wanted to do one last loving deed for their King by putting spices on his body that would stop it from smelling. They were not exactly certain how they would move the heavy stone which covered the tomb, but to their great surprise, when they arrive at the place the tomb is already open. Surprise turns to fear when they go inside the tomb and see an angel in bright clothes. They were looking for a dead body, but the angel tells them that Jesus has come back to life! This is what Jesus had tried to explain to them time after time! There was no need to fear nor be sad because he was going to rise again. As Jesus rose in victory over death, hell, and the devil, he proved that everything he said was true. But it also showed that God had accepted his sacrifice; and in the same way that Jesus rose from the grave to life everlasting, there is the assurance that everyone who puts their trust in him will also rise to spend eternity with him in the presence of the Father.
In what ways does the resurrection of Jesus give us assurance?
Think again about everything you have learned about King Jesus. Do you love him and want to follow him all the days of your life?
for faith to believe that Jesus not only died to take the punishment for your sin, but that he has risen again in order to give life to you as well.