Truth be told, our world is full of empty tombs. In
Egypt, in the Valley of the Kings, most tombs
uncovered there were found empty. Where did all the
mummyís go? Of course, King Tutís tomb would
eventually change all that. King Tutís tomb was
discovered with all of its contents and treasures
beautifully intact. And sure enough, there was old
King Tut too! But before that discovery an empty
tomb was almost expected.
There are still conspiracy believers that Elvis
Presley faked his own death and that his tomb is
empty. These crazy conspirators have even taken his
family members to court a few times demanding his
casket be raised and examined. (Cuckoo!)
When King Herodís (the Herod of the Bible) tomb was
discovered, it too was also empty. King Herod and
Jesus date back to the same time period and both
have empty tombs. So what?
Well, if the Kings of ancient Egypt, the King of
Rock Ďní Roll, King Herod, and King Jesus all have
empty tombs, then what makes Jesusí empty tomb any
more special than the rest? Why does the entire
world celebrate Jesusí empty tomb?
Simple: Jesus is the only one who is reported to
have died and came back to life. Thatís the big
deal! Can you imagine going to the graveyard and
seeing someone you knew had died, come walking out
of the family crypt? That is what we would call a
Well thatís exactly what was witnessed, recorded,
and presentedóalong with many proofsóto us from four
different writers of Jesusí day. The Gospel is not
one book of the Bible; but four books, four Gospels.
If you add in all we learn from the Apostle Paul
too, the books just keep adding up. The proofs are
too numerous to mention in a short article.
Easter Sunday will be here soon and we will all be
talking about the empty tomb of Jesus. We will be
singing songs about His resurrection and we will say
things to each other like, ďHe is risen . . . He is
risen indeed.Ē Each year we come to this time and
each year it brings us great joy. But why?
Thereís many reasons for Americanís to be joyful
today. The stock market has recently risen; your
401(k) has recently risen; the value of your home
has recently risen. All very good news. But none of
that has much impact on what we call eternity. Itís
good for today, but not for long. But if I was to
say, Christ has risen . . . well now, that changes
The empty tombs of our world might be many. But only
one is still empty because the occupant came back
from the dead and showed himself to some 500
witnesses. In fact, He invites us to join in that
resurrection ourselves upon His return and thatís
where our joy lies. That reality is in part what our
baptism represents. So if Jesusí tomb is empty
because he beat death . . . then thatís something
that can bring us joy for the long haul!
[Ron Otto, preaching minister of Lincoln