Bible Commentary: “The Stone Was Rolled Away” The Days Of Lent

March 30, 2015 at 7:12 am | Posted in Bible Commentary | Leave a comment
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“But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away.” (Mark 16:4 NIV)

“They found the stone rolled away from the tomb” (Luke 24:2 NIV)

“Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance”. (John 20:1 NIV)

Jesus had died, voluntarily giving His life on the cross as a living sacrifice for our sins. To verify that Jesus was really dead a soldier stabbed Him with a spear and blood and water flowed from the wound.  Pilate marveled that He was already dead and gave permission to Joseph of Arimathea to take the body and bury it. “As evening approached, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who had himself become a disciple of Jesus. Going to Pilate, he asked for Jesus’ body, and Pilate ordered that it be given to him. Joseph took the body, wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, and placed it in his own new tomb that he had cut out of the rock. He rolled a big stone in front of the entrance to the tomb and went away” (Matthew 27:57-60 NIV).

The Pharisees were concerned that someone would steal the body and claim that Jesus had risen so they asked Pilate that the tomb should be sealed and guarded, “The next day, the one after Preparation Day, the chief priests and the Pharisees went to Pilate. “Sir,” they said, “we remember that while he was still alive that deceiver said, `After three days I will rise again.’ So give the order for the tomb to be made secure until the third day. Otherwise, his disciples may come and steal the body and tell the people that he has been raised from the dead. This last deception will be worse than the first.” “Take a guard,” Pilate answered. “Go, make the tomb as secure as you know how.” So they went and made the tomb secure by putting a seal on the stone and posting the guard” (Matthew 27:62-66 NIV).

So here is the situation, in a small man made cave cut out of the side of a hill the body of Jesus is buried. There is only one way in and out of this tomb and a large, heavy stone is laid across this opening. Roman guards are posted outside the tomb and a seal is placed over the stone, similar to what the police do today at crime scenes. It is impossible to get in, even more impossible to get out. They bury Him on Friday, On Sunday three women come to anoint Him for burial and wonder how they will get past the stone. When they arrive they find it rolled away and the tomb is empty. “But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away. As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed. “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” (Mark 16:4-6 NIV).

Child of God – what is the purpose of a tomb or grave? It is a place to put the dead. Two angels appeared to the women and asked, “Why do you look for the living among the dead” (Luke 24:5 NIV)? Jesus is alive!  Why would a live person be found in a tomb? Matthew tells us that the angel is the one who moved the stone, “for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it” (Matthew 28:2 NIV). This was not done to let Jesus out for He had left a long time before; the angel moved the stone to let the visitors see that Jesus had been there but He was no longer there.  Jesus had been dead, but now He was risen, alive again. “He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay” (Matthew 28:6 NIV). Many times we ask the question just like the women, and they asked each other, “Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb” (Mark 16:3 NIV)? We do not need to have the stone rolled away because whatever is on the other side of that stone is dead and we are alive. Jesus came to give us life and that more abundantly.  We need to believe and live. “But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name” (John 20:31 NIV).

Our prayer:
Lord, thank you for giving me a new life in you. I’m a new creature and all things have been made new because I’m in Christ, according to your Word. Help me not to look at the old creature I used to be. Help me to remember my new nature, coming from you and live accordingly. Amen.

If you want to have a personal relationship with Jesus as your Lord and Savior pray: “Dear Jesus, I know that I am a sinner and that out of love for me you willingly sacrificed your life so that I may live. I repent of all my sins and open my heart to you as my Lord and Savior. Amen.

If you prayed this prayer for the first time or if you have any questions please contact us. We would love to hear from you.


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