Empty Tomb


The tomb is quiet.
The aroma lingers.
Sweat, blood, dust, must.

Linen folded.
A shroud lay empty,
Still wet with lymph and blood.

Guards prone, stunned, and silent.
Stone removed,
By angels hands.
Not to release an entombed savior.
Rather, a message to an entombed race.

Death could not hold Him.

A miracle that He would rise.
A miracle that He would die.

He was the power of God.
To speak was to command angels.
Yet, He resisted His power.
And, He sweat, as it were, drops of blood.

I don’t understand.
I don’t identify.
I would have had the armies slain.
I would have avoided all the pain.

And, the world would have forever been condemned.

What I wouldn’t do, He did.
The tomb is quiet.
The aroma lingers.

Richard L. Brewer
Easter 1996

“Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early, while it was still dark, and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb. So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.” So Peter went out with the other disciple, and they were going toward the tomb. Both of them were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. And stooping to look in, he saw the linen cloths lying there, but he did not go in. Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb. He saw the linen cloths lying there, and the face cloth, which had been on Jesus’s head, not lying with the linen cloths but folded up in a place by itself” (John 20: 1-7, ESV).

It has been suggested that Hebrew tradition explains the neatly folded napkin. The folded napkin had significance for the Master and Servant. When the master was done eating, he wadded up the napkin and left the table. The servant knew to clear the table since the wadded napkin meant, ‘I’m done’. A folded napkin, laid beside his plate meant, ‘I’m coming back!’ Think about it!