“So they went out and fled from the tomb, for terror and amazement had seized them; and they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid.” – Mark 16: 8
By the time you read this, we should be on the other side of Easter. In one sense, I suppose we have always been on the other side of Easter. We know the events of Jesus’ resurrection. We have celebrated Easter more than once. We come on Easter Sunday expecting Jesus to rise from the dead.
But such was not the case with most of Jesus’ followers. To them, despite Christ’s revelations about what would happen, they were caught off guard when it actually came true. They didn’t see it coming.
John 20:9 for as yet they did not understand the scripture, that he must rise from the dead. 10Then the disciples returned to their homes.
Luke 24:6+ Remember how he told you, while he was still in Galilee, 7that the Son of Man must be handed over to sinners, and be crucified, and on the third day rise again.’… 11But these words seemed to them an idle tale, and they did not believe them.
Mark 16:8 they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid
At that rate, it is amazing that the Christian faith ever got off the ground. If seeing a resurrection doesn’t do it for you, I am not sure what would. It can be good to be naturally suspicious, but at some point, to be a follower of Christ, you can’t “return home”. You have to believe. After Easter, those disciples who didn’t understand at first, eventually all bought into the resurrection and believed. And not just an “I do”. The resurrection pushed them to live and die for Christ. C. S. Lewis notes that Christianity is a faith dependent on miracles. Take out the birth, life and resurrection of Jesus; and you have little left to live for. When you believe the miracle, life changes.
It is interesting to me, that one group of people did expect the resurrection. We read in Matthew 27 that the enemies of Jesus… 63said, ‘Sir, we remember what that impostor said while he was still alive, “After three days I will rise again.” 64Therefore command that the tomb be made secure until the third day; otherwise his disciples may go and steal him away, and tell the people, “He has been raised from the dead”
Of all the people, it is the opponents of Christ who knew how powerful this would be if there really was a resurrection.
Now that we are on the other side of Easter, it’s time to believe! Be not afraid!