April 18, 2021

Keeping Jesus Sealed in a Tomb

Passage: Mark 15:42-47

The way that Joseph buried Jesus is instructive. Joseph brought a linen cloth, took the body down from the cross, and wrapped it in that cloth. He laid the body in the tomb, and then he rolled a huge stone in front of the door of the tomb. The women, watching at a distance, see where the body is laid. They see the manner in which Joseph prepares the body for the tomb and know that this is incomplete. In the Jewish burial custom, a body is lovingly washed and prepared, anointed with spices, for burial. But Joseph makes no preparation of the body. No anointing. Instead the corpse is quickly wrapped up in disheveled form and quickly, but decisively and forever, placed into the tomb. We sometimes think that the rush to bury Jesus was because of the start of the Sabbath, but I’m not so sure. It may have been more like “Out of sight, out of mind.”

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