The earth was shaking as we walked toward the tomb, carrying the burial spices for Jesus’ body. Our hearts had been heavy when we started out, and now we were frightened. We didn’t know what was happening! “Oh, Mary, let’s hurry!” I said.
When we arrived at the place where Jesus had been buried, we were very surprised by what we saw. The huge stone that had been placed in front of the opening had been rolled away. The tomb was open! What had happened?
We hurried to the entrance of the tomb, and fearfully looked inside. What would we see? “It’s empty. The tomb is empty! Oh, what has happened to Jesus? Where is His body?” Mary spoke these words in a shocked voice.
I could not answer her. I didn’t know what to do. These past few days had been so very sad for all of us. It was just last Friday when an angry crowd of people had nailed our beloved Jesus to a cross on a hill outside Jerusalem. They had put a sign over His head that said, THIS IS JESUS, THE KING OF THE JEWS. The people had made fun of Him and laughed at Him.
It had made our hearts break to see Him there. How could those people have been so cruel to One who had done only good? After Jesus died, the sky had become black as night and a great earthquake shook the land. Oh, it was an awful time. And now this! Jesus’ body was gone from the tomb where we had laid Him. It must have been stolen.
Mary and I just stood there looking around. Then we saw someone—an angel! He must have seen the fear on our faces, for he told us not to be afraid. He knew we were looking for Jesus. He told us that Jesus was not there because He had risen from the dead just like He had said He would.
Yes, Jesus had said He would rise again! Joy filled our hearts as we remembered. Our fears disappeared at the words of the angel. Suddenly we had the hope of seeing Jesus again.
The angel told us to go quickly and tell all of Jesus’ disciples that He was risen from the dead. Jesus was going to see them again in Galilee. What a wonderful message!
Quickly we left the place where Jesus had been buried. We had been afraid, but now we were very happy. Jesus was alive and we wanted to tell everyone right away. We felt so much joy. We just knew that all the people who loved Jesus would be joyful also. We ran as fast as we could to find Jesus’ disciples. We had to tell them, “Jesus is alive!”
The Resurrection of Jesus Christ, the dramatic event of the first Easter Sunday, is the focal point of our Christian beliefs. Make a special point of emphasizing that event this week with your family. One way would be for each of your family members to use the Easter greeting/response used by the Early Church: “Christ is risen!”/”He is risen indeed!”
Build reminders of Easter into your meal menus for this week. Prepare your family some foods that might stir thoughts about the first Easter week. Some possibilities: bread (Matthew 26:26); fish (John 21:12-14); hot cross buns (Luke 23:33); souffle (something that’s risen) (Mark 16:6); angel food cake (Matthew 28:5-6). At meal time, let the family members try to guess which is the special food and explain why it is significant. If they get stuck, give them the Scripture text to look up as a clue.
Verses to help your child understand this Bible lesson.
SUNDAY: Luke 24:34
MONDAY: 1 Corinthians 15:20
TUESDAY: 1 Peter 1:3-4
WEDNESDAY: Matthew 28:5-6
THURSDAY: Matthew 28:8
FRIDAY: Luke 24:6-7
SATURDAY: Acts 4:33