The Conquered Grave
One hundred years ago, a very wealthy woman who had been opposed to the doctrine of the Resurrection died. Before her death she gave orders that her grave should be covered with a slab of granite; that around it should be placed square blocks of stone, and that the corners should be fastened to each other and to the granite slab by heavy iron clamps. Upon the covering, this inscription was to be placed: “THIS BURIAL PLACE PURCHASED TO ALL ETERNITY MUST NEVER BE OPENED.”
The doubting lady had gone to great trouble to secure herself against an event in which she professed not to believe. However, time mocked her.
Not long after her death, a tiny birch tree seed sprouted and the root found its way between the side stone and the upper slab and grew there. Slowly, but steadily, it forced its way until the iron clamps were torn apart. Finally the granite lid was raised and made to rest upon the trunk of the large and flourishing birch tree.
Nearly two thousand years ago, another grave was sealed. The authority of the Roman Empire was enlisted to see that it should never be opened. It was the grave of Jesus.
Three days later, the stone that had been placed at the entrance of the tomb was rolled away. Christ arose! Death could not hold Him: “Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it” (Acts 2:24).
What good news to tell to doubting people!