Easter Devotional | 2019 - Day 13

I Can Move Forward

By Guy Shafer

“But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they came to the tomb bringing the spices which they had prepared. And they found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus.”
Luke 24:1-3

In all four gospels, we read about Mary Magdalene and other women going to the tomb to anoint the body of Jesus. About three days earlier, Jesus was crucified on the cross and was buried in Joseph’s borrowed tomb. When Mary Magdalene and the other women arrived at the tomb, they noticed the stone was rolled away. The Bible then tells us that Peter, John, Mary, and the other women ran into the tomb and saw that the body of Jesus was not there. Jesus had risen from the dead just as He said He would.

Now, the stone was not rolled away for Jesus’ sake. Jesus could have thought or spoken the stone away. Jesus could have touched the stone, or better yet, walked right through the stone because Jesus Christ has all power. The stone was moved for the sake of Mary, the other women, Peter, and John, proving that Jesus Christ was no longer dead. He was not there, He had risen from the dead, and He is alive forevermore.

Because Jesus is alive, salvation, eternal life, deliverance, and forgiveness from sin is available. The hymn says, “Because He lives, I can face tomorrow. Because He lives, all fear is gone. Because I know who holds the future, and life is worth the living just because He lives!”

Even though this took place over two thousand years ago, God is still able to roll stones away from our lives. For example, in order for us to move forward:

The stones of unforgiveness, bitterness, confusion, and depression must be rolled away.
The stones of hate, racism, bigotry, prejudices, jealousy, envy, and disobedience must be rolled away.
The stones of falsehood, deceit, malicious gossip, and slander must be rolled away.
The stones of uncontrolled anger, lust, and negative attitudes must be rolled away.
The stones of procrastination, foolishness, and unwise decision-making must be rolled away.
The stones of addiction, pride, fear, unbelief, and doubt must be rolled away.

To make it plain and simple, in order for us to move forward and receive the blessings God has for us, any stone we are consistently returning to must be rolled away. These stones represent obstacles or stumbling blocks that get in the way of our relationship with Jesus and hinder us from becoming like Christ.

How can you move forward in life? By trusting in the Lord Jesus Christ. Only He removes and replaces those stones with Himself. He is the stone that was rejected who later became the Chief Cornerstone. Jesus is the rock of our salvation. There is nothing too big for Him to move.

Call on Jesus. Let Him replace the stones that create a barrier and replace those with Jesus’ own attributes: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Because He lives—and lives victorious IN YOU—you can move forward in life!

Questions for Thought

  1. Is something holding you back from living victoriously? In other words, are there “stones” keeping you from enjoying a full and meaningful life?
  2. What do you need to do today—right now—to move the stones away?

Daily Challenge

Pray, identify the specific “stones” holding you back, and immediately begin to take action to roll those stones away.

Author Bio

Guy Shafer

Guy’s heart is to provide a fruitful and innovative environment for key ministry leaders, church members, and volunteers in a way that promotes the values of First Baptist Dallas. Married since 1985, Guy and his wife, Mary, have three children and six grandchildren, who all live in the DFW area.