The Conspiracy to Conceal the True Fact of Christ Resurrection 2
Good morning dearly beloved of Christ, I refer you to the very beginning of this post Here
It is no longer news that Christ has risen from the dead this morning in fulfilment of the scriptures; the whole circumstances surrounding that I have treated in my previous post as can be seen in the link above. My concern today is to understand the aftermath and reactions that followed His resurrection.
After the Jews were satisfied with Jesus death upon the cross; they were faced with another trouble which was that they remembered what Jesus told them about destroying the Temple and rebuilding it after three days, knowing that He has already predicted His resurrection after three days, they became worried and afraid and tried all possible to stop Him; let’s examine the passages below:
The next day–at the close of the first day of the Passover ceremonies –the chief priests and Pharisees went to Pilate, and told him, “Sir, that liar once said, ‘After three days I will come back to life again.’ So we request an order from you sealing the tomb until the third day, to prevent his disciples from coming and stealing his body and then telling everyone he came back to life! If that happens, we’ll be worse off than we were at first.” “Use your own Temple police,” Pilate told them. “They can guard it safely enough.” So they sealed the stone and posted guards to protect it from intrusion.(Matthew 27:62-66|LIVING-
This was there next fear, they even regarded Christ as a liar, who claimed to rise from the dead after 3 days, they believed that the only way that can be possible is by his disciples coming to the tomb and stealing His body, hence the guarding of the Tomb to prevent such from happening.
But did Christ really rose from the dead or was His body really stolen by the disciples? Let’s see from the screen below:
Early on Sunday morning, as the new day was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went out to the tomb. Suddenly there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and rolled aside the stone and sat on it. His face shone like lightning and his clothing was a brilliant white. The guards shook with fear when they saw him, and fell into a dead faint.(Matthew 28:1-4|LIVING
The first point I want you to understand is that the guards at the entrance of the tomb saw the angel when he came down and rolled the mighty stone away from the entrance of the Tomb and they also felt the terror of his appearance hence, they fainted.
Then the angel spoke to the women. “Don’t be frightened!” he said. “I know you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified, but he isn’t here! For he has come back to life again, just as he said he would. Come in and see where his body was lying. . . . … And as they were running, suddenly Jesus was there in front of them! “Good morning!” he said. And they fell to the ground before him, holding his feet and worshiping him. Then Jesus said to them, “Don’t be frightened! Go tell my brothers to leave at once for Galilee, to meet me there.”(Matthew 28:5-6,9-10|LIVING-
The next point to note is that, the women at the tomb that morning, also saw what happened, were invited into the tomb to confirm that He has Risen, they also saw Him face to face and He spoke to them. So from this we can see that Jesus Christ was not lying when He said that He will rise from the dead after three days. He overcome death, death could not hold Him captive, He rose victorious and today He lives and reigns at the right hand of the Father. Hallelujah.
That same day, Sunday, two of Jesus’ followers were walking to the village of Emmaus, seven miles out of Jerusalem. As they walked along they were talking of Jesus’ death, when suddenly Jesus himself came along and joined them and began walking beside them. But they didn’t recognize him, for God kept them from it. “You seem to be in a deep discussion about something,” he said. “What are you so concerned about?” They stopped short, sadness written across their faces. And one of them, Cleopas, replied, “You must be the only person in Jerusalem who hasn’t heard about the terrible things that happened there last week.” “What things?” Jesus asked. “The things that happened to Jesus, the Man from Nazareth,” they said. “He was a Prophet who did incredible miracles and was a mighty Teacher, highly regarded by both God and man. But the chief priests and our religious leaders arrested him and handed him over to the Roman government to be condemned to death, and they crucified him. We had thought he was the glorious Messiah and that he had come to rescue Israel. “And now, besides all this–which happened three days ago– some women from our group of his followers were at his tomb early this morning and came back with an amazing report that his body was missing, and that they had seen some angels there who told them Jesus is alive! Some of our men ran out to see, and sure enough, Jesus’ body was gone, just as the women had said.” Then Jesus said to them, “You are such foolish, foolish people! You find it so hard to believe all that the prophets wrote in the Scriptures! Wasn’t it clearly predicted by the prophets that the Messiah would have to suffer all these things before entering his time of glory?” Then Jesus quoted them passage after passage from the writings of the prophets, beginning with the book of Genesis and going right on through the Scriptures, explaining what the passages meant and what they said about himself. By this time they were nearing Emmaus and the end of their journey. Jesus would have gone on, but they begged him to stay the night with them, as it was getting late. So he went home with them. As they sat down to eat, he asked God’s blessing on the food and then took a small loaf of bread and broke it and was passing it over to them, when suddenly–it was as though their eyes were opened–they recognized him! And at that moment he disappeared!(Luke 24:13-31|LIVING-
The above scripture told us the story of how Jesus made His second appearance to two men on their way to Emmaus, He was marvelled at their unbelieve as regarding His resurrection after three days and hence revealed Himself to them at the table as the risen Messiah.
That evening the disciples were meeting behind locked doors, in fear of the Jewish leaders, when suddenly Jesus was standing there among them! After greeting them, he showed them his hands and side. And how wonderful was their joy as they saw their Lord!(John 20:19-20|LIVING
Finally, He appeared and showed Himself to His disciples who had since the day of His death been under lock and key for the fear of the Jews putting them to death along side with Him. So you can see the state of mind of the disciples; in fact non of them except for St. John was brave enough to come near the trial court not to talk of coming near Him at the cross. They all ran away in fear; so how then did the Jewish authority envisaged that these men will have the mind to go and steal His body from the tomb? We can see from the prevailing circumstances how He rose from the Dead all by Himself without the help of anyone, the Angel only came to roll the stone away. How He first Showed Himself to Mary, then to 2 men on their way to Emmaus and to His 11 disciples. HE IS ALIVE. HE HAS RISEN FOR DEATH COULD NOT HOLD HIM CAPTIVE. So it’s a true fact that He rose after 3 days.
As the women were on the way into the city, some of the Temple police who had been guarding the tomb went to the chief priests and told them what had happened. A meeting of all the Jewish leaders was called, and it was decided to bribe the police to say they had all been asleep when Jesus’ disciples came during the night and stole his body. “If the governor hears about it,” the Council promised, “we’ll stand up for you and everything will be all right.” So the police accepted the bribe and said what they were told to. Their story spread widely among the Jews and is still believed by them to this very day.(Matthew 28:11-15|LIVING
The Jewish council upon hearing what happened conspired with the guard to Conceal the truth that Jesus has risen and this has caused alot of confusion among many today which set the ground for many theories concerning His resurrection; let’s examine few of them;
A particular School of thought believed that Jesus while on the cross did not actually died but only fainted and was revived in the grave, managed and rolled the stone away and sneak pass the guard. Let’s look at what the scripture says confirming His death on the cross:
Pilate couldn’t believe that Jesus was already dead so he called for the Roman officer in charge and asked him. The officer confirmed the fact, and Pilate told Joseph he could have the body.(Mark 15:44-45|LIVING
And when the crowd that came to see the crucifixion saw that Jesus was dead they went home in deep sorrow.(Luke 23:48|LIVING-
So the soldiers came and broke the legs of the two men crucified with Jesus. But when they came to Jesus, they saw that he was already dead, so they didn’t break his legs. One of the soldiers, however, pierced his side with a spear, and immediately blood and water flowed out. (This report is from an eyewitness giving an accurate account. He speaks the truth so that you also may continue to believe.) These things happened in fulfillment of the Scriptures that say, “Not one of his bones will be broken,” and “They will look on the one they pierced.”(John 19:32-37|NLT2013-
In all these evidence of the scriptures, we have one eyewitness account who testified as to the truth that he really died and in confirmation of that, His bone was not broken and in further confirmation, they pierce His side to be very sure that He is no more alive. So the fact that He fainted is baseless and needles and thus inadmissible as truth.
Pinchas Lapide is an Orthodox Jewish scholar who has a very unorthodox view of the resurrection of Yeshua. He went so far as to declare,
I accept the resurrection of Easter Sunday not as an invention of the community of disciples, but as an historical event.Pinchas Lapide, The Resurrection of Jesus (Minneapolis, Augsburg Publishing House, 1983), 15.
Yeshua was not a mere victim of a mob. Nor was his death an accident. It was the very purpose of his mission. He gave up his life as an atonement for sin. His words mean nothing apart from this final action. The “good news” is that the Messiah willingly stood in our place and, by dying, took the penalty which rightfully belongs to each one of us. But he didn’t stay dead. By rising from the grave, he defeated the power of sin and death and enabled individuals to have a new relationship with God. And it is this power—the power of the resurrection—which is available to anyone who believes. This power has been changing lives (of both Jews and Gentiles) since the first century.A testimony from someone who witnessed the transforming life of Christ.
It is without doubt that Christ rose from the dead without the assistance of any man. He died, went to hell and conquered death and sin and in Him alone we will live, even if our mortal body dies in this world we have hope of resurrection and taking up immortality to reign with Him who is alive forevermore. I will like to close with this statement:
The importance of all this can not be adequately expressed in words. A dead Christ might have been a Teacher and Wonder-worker, and remembered and loved as such. But only a risen and Living Christ could be the Saviour, the Life, and the Life-Giver—and as such preached to all men. And of this most blessed truth we have the fullest and most unquestionable evidence.Alfred Edersheim, The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah (Grand Rapids, Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1971), 629.
Most excellent God, thank you for your faithfulness and your loving kindness towards us, thank you for the grace to be alive and celebrate with believers everywhere regarding the Resurrection of your dear Son Jesus Christ, regardless of all that is happening around our world today, we are sure that our God is alive and will visit us at His own appointed time. O Lord help our unbelieve, save us from hardness of heart and grant your saving grace to all who did not know Jesus nor believe in His risen life that we all will at last meet as one flock under one shepherd through Him Jesus Christ who is alive and reign with the Holy Spirit one God forever and ever. Amen.