The Berean Expositor
Volume 23 - Page 79 of 207
Index | Zoom
Apart from the writers of the four Gospels, recording the historic fact of the
crucifixion of the Saviour, no writer in the N.T. is to be compared with the apostle Paul
as a preacher of the cross. Yet no writer is so emphatic in pointing onwards to the
resurrection, declaring that without that resurrection the gospel is vain and faith is void.
We need to remember the angels' words, and, while gratefully recognizing that the cross
is the beginning of our salvation and the ground of our peace, to check the tendency that
we shall discover in ourselves and in others to remain at the cross. While the devotion of
Joseph, of Nicodemus and of the women is beautiful indeed, how much more beautiful it
would have been if one of the Lord's disciples had really believed Him, and so had found
no cause for so blind and misdirected a love. In three days the spices and the linen were
valueless. "He is not here, but is risen." "Why seek ye the living among the dead?"
We cannot believe that any regular reader of The Berean Expositor could for one
moment regard "spiritualism" in any other light than that of a Satanic travesty of truth,
but it may be of service to view the subject from the standpoint of the angels' words.
Grief stricken men and women, knowing not the Scriptures nor the power of God,
seeking comfort and assurance both for themselves and others, have been tempted to seek
the living among the dead. The words of Isa. 8: 19, 20, together with the angels'
words at the empty tomb, should be known and considered by all:--
"And when they shall say unto you. Seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and
unto wizards that peep, and that mutter: Should not a people seek unto their God? for
the living should they seek unto the dead? To the law and to the testimony; of they
speak not according to this word, surely there is no morning for them."
How many, too, have sought the living Christ among dead forms and ceremonies and
ordinances which have been imposed upon man and never lead higher than the
attainments of unsatisfied flesh. He is not here, but is risen and, as fellow-helpers of your
joy, we would point away from all these things to where Christ sitteth on the right hand
of God.
The symbol of our nation's grief and honour for those who died in battle is known as
the Cenotaph, a word which means "an empty tomb", for no soldier lies buried beneath it.
It is inscribed, "To our glorious dead". The believer, too, has a Cenotaph--"an empty
tomb" indeed, and one that needs not the inscription, "To our glorious dead", for He Who
was dead is alive for evermore, and death has no more dominion over Him.
Let us then, while we glory in the cross, remember also that we seek not the living
among the dead, and that He Who died for us, now lives for us, and bids us seek those
things which are above.