Before we move on beyond the events of Easter Sunday morning it would be instructive to consider the experience of the soldiers who found themselves swept up in events they didn’t fully grasp. Continue reading . . .
Before we move on beyond the events of Easter Sunday morning it would be instructive to consider the experience of the soldiers who found themselves swept up in events they didn’t fully grasp. These were the men who were assigned to guard the tomb where Jesus was laid. After the resurrection occurred, we read this in Matthew 28:11-15,
“While they were going, behold, some of the guard went into the city and told the chief priests all that had taken place. And when they had assembled with the elders and taken counsel, they gave a sufficient sum of money to the soldiers and said, ‘Tell people, “His disciples came by night and stole him away while we were asleep.” And if this comes to the governor’s ears, we wills satisfy him and keep you out of trouble.’ So they took the money and did as they were directed. And this story has been spread among the Jews to this day.”
Evidently the soldiers went directly to the chief priests and reported everything. The religious leaders in turn paid them a large sum of money to tell everyone that the disciples had come and stolen the body. Some find this implausible. After all, would these soldiers have admitted falling asleep on the job, knowing that it was an offense punishable by death?
However, they were convinced the Sanhedrin would act as a buffer between them and Pilate (Mt. 28:14). They were promised by the Jewish leaders that they would be kept out of trouble. Furthermore, they had already committed an offense worthy of death by leaving their post at the tomb! I can also imagine that their fear of the supernatural v