Jesus’ resurrection is the foundation of the Christian faith. Paul says: “If Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith.” (1 Corinthians 15:14). This article proposes another view of Jesus’ resurrection and the empty tomb than the one traditionally taught. It also shows humans as having the potential for the glory that Jesus achieved.
When Jesus died on the cross, a man by the name of Joseph of Arimathea (actually a veiled name for Joseph, the father of Jesus) asked for and received the body of Jesus for burial. His request was granted only after Pilate first ascertained that Jesus had indeed died. Joseph placed the corpse in a never-before-used tomb in a manner dictated by the custom of the time. None of his disciples understood what Jesus had meant by saying that he would rise again, let alone believing that anything out of the ordinary would happen (Mark 15:42-47).
Of course, just to make sure, the Jewish leaders were intent on proving that Jesus would not for any reason appear to arise from the tomb on the third day as he had said. To prevent any theft of the body that may give the appearance that Jesus had risen, they set up soldiers on guard to ensure that no one removed the huge stone which sealed the mouth of the tomb.
Early Sunday morning while it was yet dark, an angel came and rolled the stone away. The soldiers were put to sleep, and the women who came with spices to finish anointing Jesus’ body saw a glorious angelic being standing guard at the entrance of the tomb – which contained no body, only neatly folded burial cloths (John 20:6-7).
The angel was a bright spirit sent for the purpose of removing the stone. His strength came through the transmission of energy from other spirits present at the time. His materialized spirit body came about by using the guard whom he put into a trance by suggestion, as the means to obtain the necessary ectoplasm to bring about the materialization.
Mary inquired regarding the whereabouts of her beloved Master, and amazingly, he suddenly appeared to her. He was not of flesh and blood, and his appearance was not quite the same as that of the Jesus whose body had been entombed. However, when she finally recognized him, she perceived the same countenance and loving eyes and voice. Before too long, Peter and John arrived, and they too were astonished and bewildered at the empty tomb (Matthew 28:2-6).
The Bible, supplemented by a later revelation (see references below) reveal that after his death, Jesus, in his spirit body, returned to the spirit world as all deceased humans do. To complete his God-given mission, he first descended into the lower spheres where the dark spirits lived in their ignorance and sufferings, and preached to them the re-bestowal of the Divine Love and the gift of immortality which could be theirs for the asking (1 Pet. 3:19; 4:6).
Jesus in his spirit body entered the cave housing his physical body, dematerialized the body through the psychic powers he possessed, folded the linen shroud in which his dead body was wrapped, and walked out. He materialized a body closely resembling his own from elements of the universe, and it was in this way that he appeared to Mary Magdalene and the others.
So no body of flesh and blood arose, as is commonly taught. Rather, it was the materialized spirit form of Jesus that appeared to Mary, who though she was the most familiar with Jesus, did not recognize him, but thought he was the gardener. The same was the case with the disciples whom Jesus appeared to while they were travelling to Emmaus.
Jesus did this to show to his disciples that he was still alive, even after death through crucifixion for, at that time in their spiritual development, materialization was the proof for them that he was the Messiah. However, the real understanding of his Messiahship came to them only at Pentecost, when the Divine Love came into their souls with such power and abundance that they knew beyond doubt that Jesus had come to bring to mankind the very essence of the Father and it was available to them if they would seek it through earnest prayer. The Pentecost experience became later erroneously known as receiving the Holy Spirit, since it is the Holy Spirit which conveys the Father’s Love into the soul of the seeker.
The Divine Love and the resultant soul transformation from divine image into divine substance is the key to human salvation and achieving the glory that Jesus was the first to embark on, setting us an example. We will not undergo a bodily resurrection, but rather can achieve for the asking the unlimited potential to reach unimaginable glory in the Celestial Heaven, the Kingdom of God, as divine angels.
Photo: Eva Peck