“Behold, I have told you.” He had come all the way from heaven. His arrival had ushered in a great earthquake. He was on a mission. He was to roll back the stone from the door of the tomb in which the crucified Christ was laid. He sat upon it like General Douglas MacArthur walked the beaches of the Philippines making good on his promise: “I shall return!” As the angel sat upon the conquered stone, his mission remained yet unaccomplished.
Death and Hades had been conquered and Jesus had risen from the dead but there remained the message. The Greek word “angel” means “messenger.” He had been commissioned from the Throne of God, the epicenter of all that is. He arrived with that power and glory and the earth greatly quaked. These messengers are real beings from a real place and they are super charged with the power that emanates from the ultimate reactor. “His countenance was like lightening and his clothing white as snow.”(Matthew 28:3) The Designer sends out and sustains all creatures great and small, all things created, be they confined to this terrestrial ball or magnetized to yet another sphere catapulting in some other solar system. This messenger had been sent.
He was not nonchalantly received. “And the guards shook for fear of him, and became like dead men.”(Matthew 28:4) He had been sent to women. He had not been sent to those deemed important by the world’s standards at the time. These two women were the ones who would be the first to bear witness of the risen Messiah.
“But the angel answered and said to the women, ‘Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. [He didn’t tell the guards to not be afraid] He is not here for He is risen as He said. Come see the place where the Lord lay.’”(Matthew 28:5-6)
The mission of the angel was to give the message to the next anointed messengers who would then be commissioned to give the message to the next anointed messengers. “And go quickly and tell His disciples that He is risen from the dead, and indeed He is going before you into Galilee; there you will see Him.”(Matthew 28:7a) The angel took his mission with utmost sincerity. He had, as it were, the King’s message. It was put in his hands. I get the image of a relay race where the baton is handed from one runner to the next until the race is completed. The heavenly host had received the baton. He had passed the baton to the ladies. With a sense of accomplishment he asserts to them, “Behold, I have told you.”(v.7b) The ladies knew it was theirs to pass. “So they went out quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to bring His disciples word.”
Are you looking in the tomb today? Jesus conquered death. He is risen! He paid for our sins on the cross by His shed blood, rose again and now offers to all forgiveness of sin and eternal life with Him in heaven! “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.”(John 1:12-13) Believe it! Call on Him! Behold, I have told you.