Yesterday I read Matthew 27. It’s the account of Jesus’ arrest and subsequent beating, mocking, and crucifixion. Heart wrenching stuff. Stuff that I can’t figure out. Pilate’s role is incredible. He wants so bad to do the right thing, but he doesn’t. Even then, God had a plan. In the end, Pilate ends up agreeing to put guards at the stone at the front of the tomb. This, coming at the request of the Chief Priests, is foreshadowing for what is to come. The story goes on to speak of the reasoning for the chief priests request. They were concerned that the “disciples” would come steal his body and make a claim that he had risen “just as he said”.
Amazing to me that the chief priests knew so well the claims that this “Messiah” had made. Yet even after seeing the miracles, the heart of the man, the love he showed, they still couldn’t believe.
And then Sunday comes.
An angel comes and rolls back the stone. The guards were terrified. Not just scared. They were literally shaking in their boots. So they run away. They run and tell the chief priests EXACTLY what happened. They didn’t say someone stole him. They told then that an angel showed up. Why are the chief priests so determined not to listen? The have just heard first hand that Christ is no longer in the tomb and an angel, not some human, has rolled back the stone. Isn’t it obvious that they should believe? But they didn’t. In fact, they did quite the opposite. They paid the guards to tell a lie. That’s nuts! They fabricated a story, a story that will now affect all eternity, just because they had too much pride to admit they could be wrong.
The text goes on to say that “this story has been widely circulated among the Jews to this day”.
Sadly, to many still believe this story. A story that was fabricated because of the pride of men. And then we read, “you shall know the Truth, and the Truth shall set you free”.
I believe the Truth. I do not want to ever be a “chief priest”. I want to live my life in a way that it is clear that I believe in a Risen Savior. A Savior that loves me more than I can imagine. A Savior that died for me. A Savior that gained victory over death, and created a pathway for me to join Him. I want to live my life for Him.