The Secrets of Magicians (Matthew 28:12-15)

I recently watched a television series that stars a masked master magician revealing his secrets to the general public. The trick is performed then immediately following the performance, the magician reveals how the secret to how it is really performed. The narrator of the show continues to remind the viewer that the masked magician is revealing these secrets at great risk to himself because his actions are eliciting much anger from other magician colleagues. He is breaking the oath of professional silence that all magicians supposedly promise to never reveal their secrets to the general public. At the end of the series, the masked magician reveals his true identity and explains that he is giving away these secrets for the unselfish reason that the general public, and specifically children, would be inspired to try magic for themselves. Regardless of the magician’s true motives, I did not wonder why this magician was revealing his secrets, I wondered why it took so long for him or any other magician to reveal the truth?


I usually don’t have a great deal of difficulty keeping a secret, even if I was offered a large sum of money. But what if my life were threatened, or worse, my family or other loved ones were threatened with death unless I revealed my secret? Nearly two thousand years ago, the disciples of Jesus Christ were confronted with a similar scenario. They were eyewitnesses to the miracle of the resurrection. His tomb was empty and He was seen in bodily form by them and over five hundred witnesses. There were naysayers and officials who wanted to cover up the truth. Through the centuries, theories have abounded that Jesus was not really dead, only in a deathlike swoon. Another popular lie, depicted in the following passage, was that the disciples stole and hid the body of Jesus.


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 will 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.

Matthew 28:12-15 (ESV)


Yes, these and other ludicrous lies were propagated. Chuck Colson, former Watergate conspirator, eloquently stated his reason why he believed the resurrection of Jesus Christ was true, in his personal testimony.


“I know the resurrection is a fact, and Watergate proved it to me. How? Because 12 men testified they had seen Jesus raised from the dead, then they proclaimed that truth for 40 years, never once denying it. Every one was beaten, tortured, stoned and put in prison. They would not have endured that if it weren’t true. Watergate embroiled 12 of the most powerful men in the world-and they couldn’t keep a lie for three weeks. You’re telling me 12 apostles could keep a lie for 40 years? Absolutely impossible.”


The masked magician may have faced the scorn of his colleagues but he was also handsomely paid for his revelations. Keeping a lie under the threat of torture and death? Perhaps some might. But twelve apostles and over five hundred witnesses? Absolutely impossible.


Jesus Christ lived and died and was resurrected. He is God. Place your trust in Him as your Lord and Savior. This is no secret. It is the eternal reality of life.


Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.

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