And they said among themselves, Who shall roll us away the stone from the door of the sepulcher?…
The facts of our religion are, when rightly appreciated, so many moral forces for the soul, incorporating ideas which give courage and gladness, and containing principles which are at the root of conduct and life. Preeminent among them all is the resurrection. Faith in this is the one and only force that adequately enables us to roll away the stones that encounter us in the struggles of life. What St. Paul calls the "power" of the resurrection is for all of us the mighty secret of a steady triumph over temptation, difficulty, and sorrow.
I. THE RESURRECTION IS A POWER TO HEAL CONSCIENCE. Looking back upon the cross and forward to the ascension, it tells us both of pardon and righteousness.
II. THE RESURRECTION IS A POWER TO ENNOBLE DUTY. In its light life is seen to be worth living, for the stone of a purposeless and brief existence is rolled away, and with its new aims, responsibilities, functions, and motives, this life on earth has a new meaning and force. There is its stupendous responsibility, for some day we shall rise to receive the things done in our body, i.e., their results, whether they be good or bad. There is its universal jurisdiction. For the resurrection of the race, like its inevitable mortality, is generically bound up with the resurrection of its Head (1 Corinthians 15:22). There is its potential grace (Colossians 3:1). There is its majestic consecration (Romans 12:1).
III. THE RESURRECTION IS A POWER TO EXPLAIN DEATH. It shows us that death is not the end of our journey, only a stage in it. Because Christ lives, we shall live also. We have each of us to go down alone to the brink of the river, and to leave behind us all we have ever known and possessed and loved, and to pass into another condition of which we have no kind of experience, and most probably to abandon schemes but half completed, and lessons but scantily learned. Yet in the world to which we go, there will be leisure enough in the great spaces of eternity to mellow and develop in that land which needeth not sun or moon to lighten it, the gems of thought and action which we sowed here.
IV. THE RESURRECTION IS A POWER TO CONSOLE SORROW.
Parallel VersesKJV: And they said among themselves, Who shall roll us away the stone from the door of the sepulchre?
WEB: They were saying among themselves, "Who will roll away the stone from the door of the tomb for us?"