Early on Sunday morning, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and found that the stone had been rolled away from the entrance.
This one verse holds the key to finding the freedom that Jesus proclaimed.
He said, “the truth will set you free.” (See John 8:32). What does that freedom look like? Let’s look at another verse in Luke.
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released,
that the blind will see,
that the oppressed will be set free,
and that the time of the Lord’s favor has come.”
Jesus is reading in the synagogue from the scroll of Isaiah the prophet. If we hop down a couple verses, we’ll see that Jesus goes on to tell all who were listening that,
“The Scripture you’ve just heard has been fulfilled this very day!”
Jesus came to set us free from all captivity, including depression & oppression.
He came to set us free from depression and oppression, condemnation and guilt, shame and regret. The things that weigh us down and keep us down. The things that keep us from living the life that Jesus died to give us.
Why do we continue to live pushed down, oppressed lives?
Let’s look at the very first Scripture above. On the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb. Why do you think she went to the tomb? I don’t think she thought of Jesus coming back to life. She went to the tomb like so many of us do when we lose a loved one – to stay linked and connected to that person. She went to the tomb to grieve and mourn her loss. She went to the tomb to cry and be sad.
Please don’t misinterpret what I’m about to say. I’m not saying that we shouldn’t mourn. But let’s suppose that Jesus did not defeat death that day and that He stayed in the tomb forever.
Would Mary have continued to go to the tomb day after day to mourn and grieve?
Isn’t this what we do in our own lives? When something or someone dies, we cling to that death and make it part of who we are. It could be the death of a loved one. It could be the death of a marriage or business or the loss of the ability to do something you once could do.
When we hang onto something that we’ve lost, we’re unable to grab hold of what God wants us to find.
Mary found the tomb empty and she was able to move on with her life and not get stuck in that one moment when Jesus died.
Are you stuck in one moment in time when you experienced a loss?
Friends, the stone was rolled away!! The tomb is now empty. The tomb represents our past losses and failures. We need to put them in the tomb with Jesus and close it up. But . . . we need to roll the stone away and peer inside the tomb very closely. Be sure to look at every crack and crevice. Check it out carefully. What do you see?
A great big EMPTY!
The tomb is empty of all the things of our past that have held us tied down to one time in the past. All the depression and oppression was lifted away when Jesus was lifted away. Why? Because Jesus purchased our past when He died on the cross. He not only defeated death but He also defeated the haunted memories of our past!!!
Train your mind to think about the stone being rolled away and the great big empty.
When you get weighed down with a thought from the past, turn your thoughts to Jesus and His glorious resurrection.
There is so much joy to be found in Christ but we have to stop looking at the past and start looking at Him. It’s a process that will take some time but if you are intentional about it, you can overcome darkness. Regret, shame, unforgiveness, and all the other things that swirl around in our head are defeated.
Share this good news with everyone. It’s what we are called to do.
Stay in the Light and Love always,