The presentation of the Easter gospels almost always starts with the women who visit the tomb and find that the body of Jesus is no longer there. They stand in awe at the unexpected spectacle of a tomb that was occupied but now is empty and glorious!  This is how every year the Easter gospel speaks of the Resurrection of the Lord.

In Matthew’s gospel, there is a unique Easter presentation. After the burial and before the women get in the area of the tomb, Matthew returns to the chief priests and Jewish leaders who plotted the death of the Lord. Even after the burial of Jesus, Matthew reminds us that these enemies of Jesus continue their hostility, their anger and hatred against Jesus. As they wanted to kill Jesus as an infant, now they want to eliminate every trace of Jesus and his influence on the earth after his death.

Plotting with the authorities the chief priests and rulers of Israel placed guards outside the tomb of Jesus. They sealed the tomb so that no one can enter, carry off or steal the body and then claim a miraculous resurrection. Why are they afraid of a dead man’s body?

But God will frustrate the power of men, even if they are fully equipped and fully armed. In the end, the Jesus emerges victorious! No seal can prevent the Resurrection. No guards can obstruct the plan of God for his beloved people.

Isn’t this encouraging for us? Isn’t this inspiring? Sometimes we are disheartened because it seems people with evil intentions succeed in making our lives miserable. We think that we are defeated even if we put all our trust in the Lord.

Matthew’s unique episode reminds us of God’s power. No earthly power is greater. No human craftiness is more effective than God’s uncontrollable love and mercy.  This Easter, proclaim the power of God at work in your life. Proclaim the victory of Jesus that is able to bring to life even what already seems dead and lifeless. Proclaim Jesus risen and glorious!