How Empty Would This World Be…
If There Were No Empty Tomb!
“And he saith unto them, Be not affrighted; ye seek Jesus of Nazareth, which was crucified: He is risen; He is not here; behold the place where they laid Him.” (Mark 16:6)
Had you ever contemplated what this world would be like if there had been no empty tomb? If they had found the body of Jesus in Joseph’s tomb, instead of the graveclothes, what a tremendous difference it would have made in the record of humanity – past, present and future?
Looking backward, we must admit that had Jesus not risen from the grave, history would be empty. Can we imagine what it would be like to search the pages of history and find no resurrection morning? The march of mankind from the fall of Eden would seem to be a march in the fog, without chart or compass, without purpose and without accomplishment.
So-called highlights of history would appear to be without signification, because without the resurrection of Christ there would be no central pivot around which all things revolve. For there is one highlight of history, only one which gives hope and purpose to this thing called life, and that is the incontrovertible fact of the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.
The empty tomb is also the differential between Christianity and all other religions. Christianity would be no more than any other religion if there had been no empty tomb. The founders of all pagan religions went to their graves and their bodies disintegrated into dust. Only Christ broke asunder the bands of death, because as the eternal Son of God He could not be holden by such chains as death and the grave. The fact of the empty tomb is that life-giving quality which gives the Christian faith its dynamic, and sets it in a class of its own. The Christian faith is not a religion, but a reality; not a liturgy, but a life; not a tradition, but triumphant truth; not a moral creed, but a moving, creative force.
Let us now consider, how empty would be our world today if there had been no empty tomb. There would be no Christians, no churches, no Bibles, and none of the great institutions which are by-products of Christianity. Can you imagine what it would be like to live in a community where there were no Christians? How negative would be the moral and spiritual climate of such a place!
Now, having considered the past and the present, let us think what the future would be like if there had been no empty tomb. Since there could be no redemption without a risen Saviour, we must admit that only a bleak and dismal void would fill the future for the whole human family if Jesus had stayed in the tomb.
* There would be no hope for the forgiveness of sins.
* There would be no hope of ever standing, justified, in the presence of a holy and righteous God.
* There would be no hope for a golden daybreak in the future.
* There would be no hope of an eternal home in Heaven.
* There would be no hope of meeting loved ones in glory who have gone on before.
* There would be no hope of life after death!
What a purposeless, forlorn, hopeless thing life would be if there had been no empty tomb!
But instead of emptiness, thank god, there is fullness – fullness because there was an empty tomb!
The fact of the empty tomb gives fullness to the message of the Christian faith, and to the assurance that Christ is our all-sufficient Saviour.
He transforms the lives of those who trust him, and gives to them the fullness of His presence and power.
He gives His fullness in all physical and spiritual blessings, and makes possible our fullest usefulness of life.
His fullness, both here and hereafter, and forever, is the sure and unfailing heritage of all His trusting people. All of which is possible because of the emptiness of the tomb!