A borrowed tomb.

Empty tomb

And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. Isaiah 53:9

There is a great deal written about the death and resurrection but not as many expound upon the burial of Jesus Christ.

It was all foretold by Isaiah in the scripture above and fulfilled prophecy. It is an important part of the story.

Typically, non-Jewish criminals who had been crucified were left on the cross. According to Jewish custom, Jesus should have been moved to a poor and lowly gravesite out of the area.

And when evening was come, there came a rich man from Arimathaea, named Joseph, who also himself was Jesus’ disciple: this man went to Pilate, and asked for the body of Jesus. Matthew 27:57-58

Jesus’s body was taken away by rich believers and placed in a tomb (empty and never used) reserved for the wealthy. Why did Pilate allow this? Historians believe it is because Joseph of Arimathaea was a rich man of influence. But some also surmise that Pilate allowed it in order to ensure that the tomb was sealed and secure. I believe Joseph knew Jesus was the King of Kings. He knew that Jesus earthly body should rest, for a while, with the wealthy.

Pilate’s plan failed. You can’t stop the Lord of Lords. No grave can stop Jesus. The stone is rolled away. Hallelujah!

So much of what we learn through this final earthly walk with Christ was the fulfillment of prophecy. Of course, His whole life was the same.

I look forward to the stone being rolled away. I look forward to the resurrection and the life to come. Bring on Easter Sunday!

Nicene Creed

I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible.

And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, begotten of the Father before all worlds; God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God; begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father, by whom all things were made.

Who, for us men for our salvation, came down from heaven, and was incarnate by the Holy Spirit of the virgin Mary, and was made man; and was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate; He suffered and was buried; and the third day He rose again, according to the Scriptures; and ascended into heaven, and sits on the right hand of the Father; and He shall come again, with glory, to judge the quick and the dead; whose kingdom shall have no end.

And I believe in the Holy Ghost, the Lord and Giver of Life; who proceeds from the Father [and the Son]; who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified; who spoke by the prophets.

And I believe one holy catholic and apostolic Church. I acknowledge one baptism for the remission of sins; and I look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come.


The Walking Dead


I have wanted to write a book about things NOT to say at a funeral for some time. I have a lot of experience in this area after burying three family members over an 18 month time frame. At the last funeral, I even thought about taking out a notepad to write some of the more memorable words down. It got rather interesting.

I don’t mean to demean anyone who is trying their best to comfort a family in mourning. I was just not prepared for some of the things people said out loud at this time of sorrow. These sweet people meant well but their words of condolence didn’t come out quite right when spoken.

In all honestly, no one wants to hear how the departed golfer is now on the 18th hole in the big course in the sky (actually heard that one) or that your beloved Mom is giving your beloved Dad an earful about how long it took him to get to heaven and join her (yep, heard that one too). Some of these gems are priceless.

But I never said an unkind word to anyone. I understood that they were trying to be of comfort. In truth, there isn’t much you can say at a time of great loss other than “I’m sorry”. This is a sure-fire winner in the condolence department. The loved ones who mourn just want to hear you miss the deceased too and a simple “I’m sorry” becomes sweet soothing words to the sorrowful soul.

Today, I was remembering the death of Lazarus. Jesus loved Lazarus and his sisters Martha and Mary. In short, this family was very important to him. The sisters sent a message to Jesus about Lazarus’s imminent death but Jesus did not return in time to save their brother. When He finally did return, Martha raced to Jesus and said “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” (John 11:21) Speaking for myself, I’m not sure this would have been the first words out of my mouth to the Son of God.

But Jesus used this time of mourning to perform one of the last of his major miracles (excluding resurrection) and He asked to go to the tomb. Then, inexplicably, Jesus called for the corpse of Lazarus to come out. And Lazarus rose from his grave and walked to Jesus.

Jesus performed many miracles starting with turning water into wine to raising Lazarus from the dead. This was no trick. This was Jesus and He knew the time was coming when He would have to suffer greatly for the sins of the world before He could rise again into glory.

For this – I have had no words.