The oldest of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, the Great Pyramid of Giza, has amazed and astonished experts to this day. Rising over 450 feet into the air and constructed on a base whose area is more than 750 square feet, the pyramid covers an area of over 12 acres with nearly 2 ½ million blocks of stone, each weighing over 2 ½ tons. The total mass of the pyramid is estimated at 5.9 million tons. Based on these estimates, building this structure in 20 years would involve installing approximately 500 tons of stone every day, all fit together with extremely high precision. Egyptologists believe two groups of 100,000 men, both skilled workers and slave laborers, were used in the building of this project. This Great Pyramid was the tallest man-made structure in the world for over 3,800 years.
And what was all this great labor for? Death! This awesome monument to man’s glory was built as a tomb for the 4th dynasty Egyptian pharaoh Khufu. Buried with all of his worldly wealth, the king was waiting for the sun god Ra to come by so he could catch a ride through the gates of heaven.
There is another tomb you will not find on the “Seven Wonders” list, but it is far more impressive and significant than The Great Pyramid of Giza for one simple reason it is the tomb where they laid our Lord.
We do not find any record of a labor force preparing this tomb for our Lord? Because this tomb was a monument to God’s glory, not man’s glory. To be sure, there was no need for any great labor force to prepare this tomb for our Lord because He was not planning to spend much time there. It is our Lord who said, “The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised” (Luke 9:22).
There is one other point I would like to make about both tombs. Both the tomb of the Egyptian pharaoh Khufu and the tomb of Jesus are empty, but for two very different reasons. Grave robbers emptied the tomb of the pharaoh and God emptied the tomb of Jesus. Grave robbers sought out the stored wealth of the dead pharaoh, but the real wealth was not to be found in The Great Pyramid of Giza. The real wealth was to be found in a borrowed tomb that cannot even be located for certain today and His name is Jesus Christ.
At this time of the year, Christians all over the world celebrate Easter and the undeniable fact that HE IS RISEN! The Lord Jesus Christ, after having spent three days in the temporary tomb, was raised from death to life. The tomb was emptied by God Himself. In Matthew 28:5-7 we read, “But the angel said to the women, ‘Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here, for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and behold, he is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him. See, I have told you.'”
Beloved in the Lord Jesus Christ, here we have the cornerstone of the entire structure of Christianity a risen Savior! In 1 Corinthians 15:20 we read, “But now Christ is risen from the dead.” If Christ was not raised from the dead, then what we believe by faith would be a dead faith indeed. But He is risen by the Father from death to life and sits now at the right hand of the Father. Because He is risen, we too shall be raised on the last day. Because the tomb of Jesus is empty, our hope can be full. Full of power. Full of purpose. Full of passion. Does this describe your life today?
The power that raised Jesus from death to life is the same power at work in you right now. And that power is irresistible. All the Roman soldiers and the high priests could not keep Jesus in the tomb. Death itself lost its fight against our Lord as He became the death of death. The stone was rolled away not so Jesus could get out, but so we could get in and testify to the divine power that emptied the tomb of Jesus. In Ephesians 1:19,20 we read, “And what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places.” Remember the same power which raised the Head of our faith, raises the members too.
Let me encourage you this Easter season to pause and reflect upon that power that dwells inside of you.
Because Jesus was the death of death, God forbid that we should ever go back to our dead works of service to the self. But rather, let us live our lives completely for the glory of the One who purchased it with His blood on Golgotha’s Hill. The tomb is empty so our heart doesn’t have to be. NEVER FORGET THAT AMEN!
Rev. Tommy Boland is the men’s minister and sports minister at Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church. He also teaches adult Sunday school. For more information, including Bible study resource materials, please e-mail [email protected] or visit www.tommyboland.wordpress.com.