Matthew 28:5-7 – THE MESSAGE OF EASTER
Each holiday has a message.
The message of July 4th in the United States is the nation’s independence from England.
The message of Memorial Day is the death of patriotic men and women who died from their country.
The message of Mother’s Day is “mom”.
The message of Father’s is “dad”.
The message of Christmas is the birth of Christ. We aptly say “Jesus is the reason for the season.”
The message of Good Friday is the death of Christ for our sins. 2 Corinthians 5:21
And what about this holiday?
To celebrate this holiday the secular world has given us the Easter Bunny, Easter candy, Easter rabbits, Easter dinner and Easter bonnets. Are these the message of Easter? The answer of course is “no”!
What is the message of Easter? The answer to that question is found in our text. ” And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified. He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. And go quickly, and tell his disciples that he is risen from the dead; and, behold, he goeth before you into Galilee; there shall ye see him: lo, I have told you.”
There are four words in this text which I feel sum up the message of Easter. There are others who have also expressed this idea.
The four words are imperatives.
They are commands.
By way of background, Jesus was dead! He had been betrayed by Judas, forsaken by His disciples, denied by peter, tried by the Sanhedran, condemned to die Pontius Pilate, crucified at Calvary, buried in the tomb of Joseph of Arimithea. On Easter morning women came to the tomb, concerned that they would be able to get in. Mark 16:3. But when they arrived they were in for the surprise of their lives! A great earthquake had taken place. Matthew 28:2 The angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and rolled back the stone. Matthew 28:2-4 When the women arrived they were told not to fear. The angel knew they were seeking Jesus. Matthew 28:5
The angels told the women to “COME”.
This was an invitation often given in the Scriptures.
Ever since the Garden of Eden when Adam and Eve sinned against a righteous and holy God, God has had His arms open, saying “Come”.
He gave the promise of the Messiah who would have victory over Satan. Genesis 3:15
He used the ark build by Noah as a picture of coming to Him for the protection of salvation.
He invited the children of Israel to come out of Egypt. Later He invited them to come into the promised land.
He gives great invitations to come in Isaiah 55:1-3 and Revelation 22:17.
Jesus made that same great invitation in Matthew 11:28-30.
Have you labored under a load of guilt?
Have you been burdened with the awfulness of your sin?
Have you labored to get into Heaven, and are still not sure you’re going to make it?
Have you been “heavy laden” with the load of trying to keep the Ten Commandments, or the precepts of a particular church?
JESUS SAYS “COME! COME UNTO ME!”
We come to Him who has left the tomb!
We come to Him that is risen from the dead!
We come to Him who is living right now in Heaven!
We come to Him who is offering forgiveness and salvation to all who believe! John 3:16
We come to Him who offers peace and power to all who have believed on Him! John 14:27, John 15:1-7
I’d like to differentiate between the words “look” and “see”. When I look at something, I may not grasp what I’m looking at. I may not comprehend or understand. But when I truly “see” something I grasp, comprehend, or understand it. I believe that’s what the angel wanted the women to “see” or grasp, understand, and comprehend that the tomb was empty and that Christ had risen from the dead.
I believe God wants us to “see” that Christ is risen from the dead and is alive forever.
In seeing that God wants us to place our faith and trust in Him as our Savior. Romans 10:9-10
The women were told to go.
Jesus did not intend for anyone to stare continually into the empty tomb.
After we come to a point of seeing the empty tomb and trusting Christ as Savior, we are to go.
We are to go to learn more about Him. 2 Peter 3:18
We are to go to Him in prayer. John 14:13-14
We are to go with Jesus Christ, allowing Him to live through us. Galatians 2:20
We are to church and fellowship with other believers. Hebrews 10:24-25
We are to go to a lost and dying world. Acts 1:8
The women were supposed to tell the disciples of the resurrection.
As someone has said, Christianity is one beggar telling another where to find bread.
There was once a demon-possessed man who was healed. He wanted to travel with Jesus.
Instead he was told to go home and tell the great things the Lord had done for him. Mark 5:19
It is our job to tell others what great things the Lord has done for us. Psalm107:2, Matthew 28:19-20, Mark 16:15, 1 Peter 3:15
The message of Easter is “COME AND SEE. GO AND TELL!”