Sitting on a Stone

sat on a stone

And suddenly there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord, descending from heaven, came and rolled back the stone and sat on it.  Matthew 28:2

When Jesus rose from the dead, Matthew reports there was an earthquake. The stone that had been resting at the entrance of the tomb was moved. The tomb was empty. And when Mary Magdalene and another woman came to the tomb, they saw the stone being moved. To their astonishment, an angel had moved the stone and was now sitting on it. This image is almost comical, an angel casually sitting on top of a giant rock after a job well done. I don’t think Matthew intended me to think that the angel was also reclining and admiring his fingernails, but that is an image that sticks with me. An angel announcing the Good News of the resurrection to Jesus’ friends, a message delivered while sitting on top of a stone.

This is a fitting image for us here at Amazing Grace. We’ve been talking about stones this Lent: stone tablets, rejected stones, casting stones, hearts of stone, shouting stones and so on. The most important image has been that of living stones, as described in First Peter 2 as “being built into a spiritual house”, “offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God”.

Many of us have been carrying a stone with us to remember our identity as being claimed by Christ. During this time many of us realized the tediousness of carrying around this stone. The stone takes up room in the pocket, it is easily lost, easy to forget when rushing out the door in the morning. In this way, the stone also reflects the weight of sin we each wrestle with daily.

The giant stone that covered the entrance to the tomb, a place of death and sorrow, was moved. God’s power over death and sorrow is evident this Easter. God raised Jesus from the dead. The weight of sin, death and sorrow is lifted. The stone has been moved by the angel, revealing the empty tomb, this  marvelous work of God.

As we again observe the splendor that is Holy Week, what awaits us at the end of the week and month is the Good News that Christ is Risen! Christ enters our darkness and frustrations and gives us hope, joy, and life.

May God Bless and Keep You,
Pastor Jason Talsness


Posted March 31, 2014 by Amazing Grace Lutheran Church | Pastors Corner | Permalink |