THE PROMISE OF LIFE – Site of the Tomb, Emmaus, Galilee
Cornelius stayed there two days hearing story after story of someone seeing him here and another there. Again the city streets was filled with all kinds of rumors more so the rumors spread by the chief priests that Jesus’ body was taken and hidden by the disciples who are saying that he is alive. Cornelius returned to his post at Emmaus, expecting to be summoned anytime by the Governor. When he arrived Cestus was there with a present for him.
“We captured him one day ago in a tavern. He has an interesting tale to tell you, sir.”
The soldier told his story. He was one out of eight guards that watched the tomb. That fateful morning while it was yet dark, the earth trembled greatly. It shook so much that the soldiers could not keep their footing. Then there was a great light but it did not come from the sun. It was an apparition whose appearance was like a thousand lightnings and his clothing as white as snow. It was he that rolled away the stone like it was a feather. Then even a greater light came from within the tomb. The guards were frozen in fear and could not move. They were like dead men. When their senses returned, the sun was just rising. The stone was rolled far away and the tomb empty. In panic, they abandoned their post. They dared not report back to their commander for they knew it was instant death for desertion. So, they went to the chief priests. They gave each soldier a large sum of money and told them to spread the word that the disciples came by night and stole the body while they slept. The priests promised that they will be protected from the Governor. The deserters did get the money and they spread their lies among the Jews. But three of the guards doubted that the priests could protect them, so they fled south.
“Cestus, let this man go. He is right to run. No commander will believe if they told the real truth.”
This was a dilemma that he had to face as well. Cornelius wanted to tell the whole world of what happened but how will the world believe such a story.
The story continues on in my next post.
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