Project 119: Luke 24:1-12

 |  Project 119  |  Dr. Wayne Splawn

“An Ending They Did Not See Coming”

I enjoy watching movies with surprise endings. I love to watch a good story conclude in a way I never saw coming. The movie that I think most typifies this type of film is M. Night Shyamalan’s The Sixth Sense. I can remember being totally taken by surprise as the final scene of that movie played out on the screen before me. I will not ruin it for you in case you have not seen it, but suffice it to say that, at the end of the movie, the audience learns an important detail about the identity of one of the main characters that completely changes the meaning of everything that had happened throughout the entire movie. It is not until the end of the movie that one can look back and correctly understand what had been happening the whole time.   

When you read Luke 24:1-12, it is apparent that Jesus’ followers experienced a similar feeling when they went to visit Jesus’ tomb. They were certain that Jesus had died on the cross and they made the trip to the tomb to make final preparations to Jesus’ body. However, when they arrived at the tomb, the stone that secured the entrance had been rolled away and the tomb was empty. As they are trying to understand what had happened to Jesus’ body, two angels appeared and told them that Jesus had been raised from the dead in fulfillment of what He had predicted throughout His ministry. The women then remembered what Jesus had said would happen and they ran to tell the other disciples what they had seen and heard from the angels. In the days that followed his resurrection, Jesus would appear to His disciples many times to prove that He was the Messiah who had indeed risen from the dead.

The resurrection is an essential part of the gospel message (1 Corinthians 15:1-5). Because Jesus has been raised from the dead, He has defeated sin, death, and hell and all who place their faith in Him share in the salvation He has achieved on their behalf. Each of us will one day experience death if Jesus does not return first. However, if we are in Him, we can face our death with the assurance that death will not be the last word for us. One day, the risen Jesus will return to this world and all who have died in Christ will be raised and given resurrection bodies and live with the Lord for all of eternity. If you are in Christ, rejoice today in the hope that is yours. Christ is risen, He is risen indeed! If you have not yet received the gift of eternal life through faith in Jesus Christ, then today God is calling you to repent of your sins, place your faith in Christ, and experience the eternal life that is available to all who trust in Jesus.

Luke 24:1-12 (ESV):

1 But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they went to the tomb, taking the spices they had prepared. 2 And they found the stone rolled away from the tomb, 3 but when they went in they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. 4 While they were perplexed about this, behold, two men stood by them in dazzling apparel. 5 And as they were frightened and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, “Why do you seek the living among the dead? 6 He is not here, but has risen. Remember how he told you, while he was still in Galilee, 7 that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men and be crucified and on the third day rise.” 8 And they remembered his words, 9 and returning from the tomb they told all these things to the eleven and to all the rest. 10 Now it was Mary Magdalene and Joanna and Mary the mother of James and the other women with them who told these things to the apostles, 11 but these words seemed to them an idle tale, and they did not believe them. 12 But Peter rose and ran to the tomb; stooping and looking in, he saw the linen cloths by themselves; and he went home marveling at what had happened.