He is Not Here

Dominick Kaaihue

"... And they found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus... ‘He is not here, but He is risen..." (Luke 24: 2, 3, 6)
I often wonder what it must've been like to go looking for His body. To prepare it for a proper burial and to see the tomb empty. An empty tomb... That's all they found. Even the best C.S.I. detectives of today cannot answer that mysterious disappearance of Jesus' body. He laid lifeless in a cave and the next thing they know... Poof, Gone!

How can that be though? They had too many eyewitness accounts that followed the story of Jesus closely. They knew He had been arrested, put on trial, sentenced to death, beaten severely, mocked, hung on a cross, died, placed in an a tomb, enclosed with a large stone, and guarded by Romans soldiers. Still, Jesus' body disappeared! What happened to His body?

In the summer of 2000, I had the privilege of traveling to Israel with a New Hope tour group. We were tourist and the Israeli police thought I was a terrorist... but that's for another journal. We went to many of the sites we read about in our bibles: The Garden of Gethsemane, the Sea of Galilee, Cana, the Upper Room, and the Garden Tomb.... Unreal!

Out of all the places we saw, I was super excited to see the Garden Tomb... Why? Christianity hinges on Him rising from the dead. I believe that if they went looking for Him and found Jesus' body still in the tomb, Christianity would never have happened. All that He said, all that He promised, and all that He did would still be a feat, but how could they/ I/ we believe in a Savior who's body still lie in state? So, I did a little C.S.I. investigation on my own.

At the alleged site of the Garden Tomb, I stood in a line as it proceeded to the tomb. At the entrance, I read the sign on the door that said, "He is not here! He has risen! He has risen indeed!" I peeked my into the tomb and even walked inside of it and guess what... "HE WASN'T THERE!" Jesus wasn't in the tomb... Praise the Lord!

You know over the years, people have come up with their own conspiracy theories of what happened to His body. "The Disciples stole Him!" Or "He was never in the tomb!" Or the world famous answer of them all... "I DON'T KNOW!"

People still disbelieve, disagree, and disapprove of the truth... Jesus rose from the dead! Although an empty tomb is proof of what He said would happen, "On the 3rd day I will rise again" many still don't believe.
Maybe I needed to see for myself to confirm why I'm a believer... I don't know. And maybe like Peter, many will have to see for themselves... That Jesus wasn't there! And that He paid the price for our sins! And that He died! And that He rose from the dead! And that we have hope in Him! All I know is, "I'm a believer and nothing in the world can change that... I saw the empty tomb!"
Lord, thanks for doing what You said You would do. Hallelujah! Amen.

Devotions for October 11

Nehemiah 5,6
Psalms 146
Luke 24

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