Easter Scripture Study – The Empty Tomb: Christ is Risen

Empty Tomb of Christ, by James Emery (click image for source)

Find the entire Easter Scripture Study here.

Today is a good day. After ten days of studying the events of the last week of Christ’s life – where each event seemed to get progressively worse for Him, we are finally to the event of His Resurrection. This is what it is all about.

Finding the Empty Tomb
Knowledge of the resurrected Lord begins when a group women — including Mary Magdalene, Joanna, and Mary — went to the garden tomb to anoint the Savior’s body. It was the first day of the week, and the arrived at the rising of the sun. (See Mark 16:2.)

When they arrived at the sepulchre, the stone had been rolled away, and the body of Jesus was gone. The women were confused. They saw two angels who asked, “Why seek ye the living among the dead?

I think that it is important to ask this question to myself. When I think about my Savior, do I remember that He is living, or do I seek Him among the dead? Do I remember that he is accessible now. One of the ways that I seek Him is through the scriptures. That is important, but it is only a part of it. In fact, if I go to the scriptures without having the Spirit, then I am seeking for Christ among the dead. To find Christ, I should read the scriptures – with a prayer in my heart. I should pray. I should serve others. Can you think of a better way to infuse our lives with the Savior – than by doing the things that He did: study the gospel, pray, and serve others?

It is easy to forget that we believe in a living God. In every way Christ is life.

  • Anciently, this lesson was taught when Elijah challenged the priests of Baal. No matter what they did, their God could not save them. In hindsight, we can see why. Their God was their own creation. Baal was like an imaginary friend – perhaps a comfort at time, and easy to confuse with reality. But, in the end – He was imaginary Baal couldn’t save them because Baal didn’t exist. He was dead, and belief in Baal resulted in death. Elijah, however, called on the Lord – in the most improbable of circumstances, and the Lord came. His fire consumed everything. The people responded:

    “And when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces: and they said, The Lord, he is the God; the Lord, he is the God.” – 1 Kings 18:39

  • Christ, because He is living, can offer us life.

    “Wherefore, men are free according to the flesh; and all things are given them which are expedient unto man. And they are free to choose liberty and eternal life, through the great Mediator of all men, or to choose captivity and death, according to the captivity and power of the devil; for he seeketh that all men might be miserable like unto himself.

    And now, my sons, I would that ye should look to the great Mediator, and hearken unto his great commandments; and be faithful unto his words, and choose eternal life, according to the will of his Holy Spirit;” – 2 Nephi 2:27-28

    Christ is the living water, the bread of Life, the beginning and the end, the life, the resurrection. He is the I AM. Throughout the scriptures, we are taught that He is living. The angels gently remind the women in the tomb:

    “He is not here, but is risen: remember how he spake unto you when he was yet in Galilee,

    Saying, The Son of man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again.” – Luke 24:6-7

    The Spirit began to speak to their souls, and they remembered the words of the Savior. Even if they didn’t fully understand what this meant – that the Lord was Resurrected and Perfected, that He had overcome death and sin – they began to remember, and they ran to tell the apostles that Jesus’s body was gone.

    Mary Sees the Resurrected Lord
    This is probably my favorite story in all of the scriptures.

    Mary and the Resurrected Christ

    You may be familiar with the story: Mary is at the tomb, weeping. She double checks the sepulchre. It is empty. He is not there. As she weeps, Jesus comes. She doesn’t know that it is Him. She assumes that he is the gardner, and asks to know where the body of Christ had been moved to. Jesus answers:

    “Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master.” – John 20:16

    I hope that I can be like Mary. I hope that one day, when Jesus calls me, I know Him.

    “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:” – John 10:27

    I hope to be like Mary: that the Savior knows me by name, and when He calls me, I fall at His feet, saying Master.

    This Easter, I hope to remember that I believe in a living God, that He can be found as I seek Him with the Spirit. I hope to remember not only the pain He suffered, but the Hope He offers. I hope to be like Mary, a humble servant of Christ, who knows her master.

    I’m grateful for this time of year, and I want to add my testimony of the Savior.

    While I haven’t had very extravagant or dramatic experiences with the Lord, I have had experiences with Him that speak to my soul personally. I know that He loves me. I have felt His guidance, love, and support throughout my life.

    As I have sought Him – through scripture study, prayer, and covenant keeping, I have found Him. I wish that I was good at having His Spirit to be with me all of the time, but I know that it is because of my own shortcomings that I lose that contact from time to time.

    I write this knowing that there are probably some people who may doubt the existence of a God, a living God, and I can’t sit and persuade anyone that He exists. I can only bear my testimony: that I have felt His love for me. I have seen miracles occur in my life. That, as I have studied the gospel, His Spirit has enlightened my mind and uplifted my heart.

    I know that He came to the earth, lived, died, and lived again – for each of us. He loves us. He wants to be able to call each of us by name as He did Mary. I know that He delights in blessing each of us with His best blessings.

    I know that He loves us enough to make it possible for us to covenant with Him. He blesses us with His Spirit and Power. I know that He wants us to be happy. All of what He did in His life, though laced with so much pain, was done so that we could be happy.

    This Easter, I want to add my own testimony to so many others that have been given: I know that Christ lives. I know He loves me.

    Happy Easter! Please share your testimony of the Savior! If you are searching, find out more about the Savior here.

    Download the entire Easter Scripture Study Series here


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