Jesus’ body had been stolen! As far as the women were concerned, a missing body indicated a stolen body. Not only was their Lord falsely accused, beaten, and killed before them, now He had been taken from them. And all they had was gone.
The following is an account taken from Matthew 28:5-10, Mark 16:5-8, and Luke 24:4-8. The events have been arranged in chronological order.
Mary Magdalene had left the tomb to find answers to soothe her troubled soul. Peter and John had been notified and had seen that the body was missing, as well. The agony of loss was compounded by the torment of uncertainty and desecration. It had been enough to see the Lord die. Now, they had to see the Lord defiled.
The other women—Mary (the mother of James), Salome, and Joanna—wept outside the desolate tomb. It was morning now. The sun was up, and the day was beginning for most. But darkness still troubled their souls.
They wanted to have one last look inside the tomb. In it were two angels, dazzling in appearance. The women shook in fear and bowed their faces to the ground. Then the angels said to them:
“Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen. Remember how he told you, while he was still in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men and be crucified and on the third day rise.”
Hearing these words, their fear became deep reverence, and great joy sprang up in their hearts. Their Lord had risen, just as He said He would! They had only forgotten His promise. Now reminded, the absence of His body made sense.
At this good news, the women rose to their feet with gladness. The angels commanded them to tell the disciples, and they eagerly left the tomb to do so. But the excitement was not over. Just outside the tomb was Jesus, who had just finished speaking to Mary.
“Greetings!” The risen Lord said to them.
Again, only with more reverence and joy, the women bowed. They clung to His feet and worshipped. Jesus was alive, just as He said He would be. They heard it before. They were reminded from heaven. And now they were embracing the reality: Jesus resurrected from the dead.
Nothing can thwart the plan of God (Job 42:2). No stone can conceal Him. No soldier can stop Him. For there is nothing in all of creation that can frustrate the purposes of God, not even death.
That which God promises to do, He will do. And nothing will stand in His way.
The evidence of His resurrection began to unfold in this wonderful story. Jesus, the Son of God, risen from the dead, lives even this day and forevermore. We must not search for Him among the dead. Plato is dead. Socrates is dead. Darwin is dead. Buddha is dead. Mohammed is dead. Ghandi is dead. Nero is dead. Saddam is dead. But Jesus is alive!
Do not seek the living Christ among the dead gods.