What If They Moved the Body?
Sometimes I find myself asking if I really believe Jesus' tomb was supernaturally empty that Easter morning.
Because that's what it boils done to, friends. To my way of thinking, if Jesus Christ somehow had the power to overcome death itself, then He is powerful like no other. If Jesus defeated death, He is better than a prophet, better than a teacher, better than a holy man. He is Someone to trust completely. He is the Real Deal Savior of humanity.
Tomb empty? Jesus alive? Isn't another explanation more likely? For example, couldn't His disciples have moved the body? Readers, I've studied this theory and rejected it for these reasons (click the underlined portions to link to the Bible passages in question):
Roman guards. When the Jewish leadership complained to Pilate, the Roman governer of Judea, that Jesus' disciples might steal His body, Pilate ordered them to take guards and make the tomb secure. So the disciples couldn't just sneak Jesus' body away. If the guards fell asleep, as some skeptics suggest, wouldn't the disciples straining to roll away that big stone make enough noise to awaken them?
Eyewitnesses. For this theory—disciples moved the body—to work, you've got to have a dead Jesus, and He needs to stay dead. You can't have a resurrected Jesus appearing all over Judea to great numbers of eyewitnesses. It weakens your argument. You see that, don't you?
Saul of Tarsus. Verified hater and persecutor of Jesus' followers, Saul had every reason to promote the theory Jesus' disciples moved His body. But Saul had a total and life-long change of heart after encountering the resurrected Jesus Christ on the road near Damascus. This event took place years after Jesus' crucifixion and burial.
I can't fathom the inconceivable power that must have been involved in emptying that tomb of the dead Jesus Christ and resurrecting Him into eternal life that Easter Sunday morning. But I don't believe His disciples moved the body.