Devotion and Prayer for Week of March 24, 2013

Meditation for the week of March 24, 2013


If you have ever studied the art of debate, you probably learned that one of the weakest arguments you can make is something referred to as “an argument from absence.”  Simply put, this means that the lack of evidence is not the best way to make a point.
For example, several years ago while listening to an early morning talk radio program the guest gave a classic argument from absence.  He made the extraordinary claim that the Bible actually supported the idea of reincarnation.  However, he said, the church had edited out all the passages over the years.
The host, who sounded a bit skeptical, stated that he had never heard that before and asked the man to support his statement with some evidence.  The guest explained that he knew because “it wasn’t there.”  He went on to say (erroneously) that every religion teaches reincarnation and since every religion teaches reincarnation, therefore Christianity must have also taught it at one time.  At least in his mind, the lack of any evidence of reincarnation constituted the “proof” that it had been edited out.  Is it any wonder that arguments from absence are considered weak?
There is, however, a case where we as Christians make an argument from absence and it actually makes for the strongest evidence.  In fact, we use this argument from absence to provide us with peace and hope.  It is called the “empty tomb.”
“The angel said to the women, ‘Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified.  He is not here; he has risen, just as he said.  Come and see the place where he lay,’” (Matthew 28: 5-6).


An argument from absence?  You bet and the best kind!  The empty tomb, absent the body of Jesus, marks the greatest event in the history of the world.  “He is not here,” was the proof, the evidence that God had forgiven the sin of the world.  With all its echoing emptiness, the vacant tomb proclaims to us that the bodily resurrection of Christ Jesus is God’s own seal of approval that all the sins for which Jesus died (our sin included) are forgiven.  The punishment of the grave was no longer necessary.  In the empty tomb we find the God-given proof that Jesus paid for our sins (remember, he had none of his own) and that we too are now free from the grave.
On March 31st, we will once again celebrate the resurrection of our Lord from the grave.  We will rejoice over his empty tomb and sing his praises for by his death and resurrection we know that we will have been given eternal life and we look forward to the day when our graves will be empty as well!
“He is not here; he is risen.”  He is risen, indeed!


Our Weekly Prayer  

Most Gracious and Heavenly Father, in the wonder of that first Easter you proved that our sins have been forgiven through the empty tomb of Jesus, our Savior.  Help us by faith to embrace his empty tomb and let it always be the joyous evidence that because Jesus has been raised from the dead that we too will one day rise to be with him.  In Jesus name.  Amen.