41 Now in the place where he was crucified there was a garden; and in the garden a new sepulchre, wherein was never man yet laid.
42 There laid they Jesus therefore because of the Jews' preparation day; for the sepulchre was nigh at hand.
A Borrowed Tomb
When Jesus was crucified, his unbroken, yet pierced and beaten body was taken down, wrapped quickly and laid in a tomb that intended for someone else. Two secret disciples finally came out in the open to beg for the body of Jesus. Joseph of Arimathaea went to Pilate directly. Nicodemus, the little man we sing about in Sunday School, brought spices to prepare the body for burial. They had followed Christ in secret. Now they served Christ openly from their hearts.
They had been released from their borrowed tomb.
The idea behind tombs is to keep dead things from the living. Once in a tomb, no one from the outside is supposed to come in unless they are dead. The tombs of great kings and of the wealthy were often raided because they were filled with terrific treasures. They were the living embodiment of 'where your treasure lies, there your heart will be also' (Matthew 6:21).
And so are we.
Before we come to know Christ, we are living in borrowed tombs. Our souls are in a place where they are not intended to stay. We are supposed to be with the Father just as Adam and his wife were before the fall. We are not destined for a fiery eternity apart from the Father, but in the cool of the garden before His face.
But, with sin, we entered a borrowed tomb. A tomb designed to keep us in, condemned to darkness and separation from life.
Like our Savior, we're supposed to come out of this borrowed tomb. It wasn't designed for the living. It was never intended to be a place of nourishment, and certainly not a place of enjoyment and where we can have a full life. It's a place for the dead. Its not a place for you, or me.
Jesus came that we may have life, and that more abundantly (John 10:10). An abundant life has no business in a tomb.
It's time to come out of that borrowed tomb. It's not yours. It doesn't have your name on it. Your name is written in the Lamb's book of Life, not in a book of death. You cannot be found on the death lists. You've been offered more, abundant life. It's yours for the taking because you're His for the dying.
It took seeing Christ crucified to motivate Joseph and Nicodemus to come out of their borrowed tombs and into the marvelous light of service and open devotion. Even if you have already accepted Christ, if you're still avoiding discipleship, study and growth, you're like a newborn lying in a tomb; there's nothing there for the living.
9 Nicodemus answered and said unto him, How can these things be?
10 Jesus answered and said unto him, Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things?
11 Verily, verily, I say unto thee, We speak that we do know, and testify that we have seen; and ye receive not our witness.
12 If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things?
13 And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.
14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:
15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
19 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
20 For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.
21 But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.
Won't you come out of the darkness and into His marvelous light? Look at the stone. That's not your name on it. It's already been rolled away. It's time to come out.
Lifeline is produced from the Evangelistic Ministry of in Jonesboro, GA. You are encouraged to share this message. The Fellowship Church website (www.fcchosengeneration.com) includes a link to the Lifeline Blog (www.lifelineatfellowship.blogspot.com) where you can find previous messages.
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Where Passions Become Reality
Because You Are a Chosen Generation
Between GA Hwy 85 and US 19/41
Across from EJ Swint Elementary School
Church Website - www.fcchosengeneration.com
Alton Watkins, Pastor