Garden Tomb

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Places of Interest

Garden Tomb: Death, Burial, and Resurrection of Christ

 

Location

 

1. Gordan’s Garden Tomb is located just 250 yards (220 m.) to the north of the Damascus Gate of Old City Jerusalem.

 

2. It provides a serene setting in a garden-like place to meditate and reflect upon the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ.

 

3. It is considered by many as the true location of Golgotha.

 

4. The traditional location of Golgotha is at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.

 

5. Both places have evidence of being the location of Golgotha. However, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre has more tradition and activity surrounding it.

 

6. Both places are within a stone’s throw of each other so regardless of the location we are still in close vicinity of Golgotha.

 

7. Because we worship a person and not a place, the exact location is not necessary for understanding and reflecting on what Christ did for us at Golgotha.

 

Historical Background

 

1. The property of the Garden Tomb was purchased in 1894 by The Garden Tomb Association. 

 

2. It is a Charitable Trust based in the United Kingdom and is made up of people from many different denominations and national backgrounds. 

 

3. Their passion is to help people understand all Christ did for them on the Cross. 

 

4. The site is maintained by volunteers that come from around the globe and join a team of local Palestinians and Israelis.

 

Places of Interest

 

1. Garden Tomb. A cave-like tomb that can be entered. It has a channel at the entrance where a stone could be rolled to cover and uncover the tomb.

 

2. A rock face cliff that has the form of a skull which is believed to be Golgotha.

 

3. Damascus Gate

 

4. Old City Jerusalem

 

5. Church of the Holy Sepulchre

Death, Burial, and Resurrection of Christ in the Bible

 

1. At 3:00 pm, Friday afternoon, Jesus dies. This happened at the exact time the sacrificial lamb for the Passover was to be killed.
Matthew 27:45–53: Now from the sixth hour [12:00 pm] there was darkness over all the land until the ninth hour [3:00 pm]. 46 And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, "Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?" that is, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" 47 And some of the bystanders, hearing it, said, "This man is calling Elijah." 48 And one of them at once ran and took a sponge, filled it with sour wine, and put it on a reed and gave it to him to drink. 49 But the others said, "Wait, let us see whether Elijah will come to save him." 50 And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice and yielded up his spirit. 51 And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And the earth shook, and the rocks were split. 52 The tombs also were opened. And many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised, 53 and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many.

 

2. Jesus’ body is taken down from the cross and placed in a tomb. 
John 19:41–42: Now in the place where he was crucified there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb in which no one had yet been laid. 42 So because of the Jewish day of Preparation, since the tomb was close at hand, they laid Jesus there.

 

3. Jesus’ body was given to Joseph of Arimathea, prepared for burial, and placed in Joseph’s own tomb.
Matthew 27:57–61: As evening approached, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who had himself become a disciple of Jesus. 58 Going to Pilate, he asked for Jesus' body, and Pilate ordered that it be given to him. 59 Joseph took the body, wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, 60 and placed it in his own new tomb that he had cut out of the rock. He rolled a big stone in front of the entrance to the tomb and went away. 61 Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were sitting there opposite the tomb.

 

4. The Tomb of Jesus is sealed and secured by the Romans.
Matthew 27:62–66: The next day, the one after Preparation Day, the chief priests and the Pharisees went to Pilate. 63 "Sir," they said, "we remember that while he was still alive that deceiver said, 'After three days I will rise again.' 64 So give the order for the tomb to be made secure until the third day. Otherwise, his disciples may come and steal the body and tell the people that he has been raised from the dead. This last deception will be worse than the first." Pilate said to them, "You have a guard of soldiers. Go, make it as secure as you can." 66 So they went and made the tomb secure by sealing the stone and setting a guard.

 

5. On Sunday morning, very early, Jesus rose from the dead.
Matthew 28:1–10: After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb. 2 There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. 3 His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. 4 The guards were so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men. 5 The angel said to the women, "Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. 6 He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. 7 Then go quickly and tell his disciples: 'He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him.' Now I have told you." 8 So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his disciples. 9 Suddenly Jesus met them. "Greetings," he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him. 10 Then Jesus said to them, "Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me."

 

6. Mary Magdalene is our example of what it means to love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength.
John 20:11–18: But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb, and as she wept, she stooped to look into the tomb. 12 And she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had lain, one at the head and one at the feet. 13 They said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?” She said to them, “They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him.” 14 Having said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing, but she did not know that it was Jesus. 15 Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?” Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.” 16 Jesus said to her, “Mary.” She turned and said to him in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means Teacher). 17 Jesus said to her, “Do not cling to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father; but go to my brothers and say to them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’” 18 Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord”—and that he had said these things to her.

 

7. The Roman soldiers report to the chief priests.
Matthew 28:11–15: While the women were on their way, some of the guards went into the city and reported to the chief priests everything that had happened. 12 When the chief priests had met with the elders and devised a plan, they gave the soldiers a large sum of money, 13 telling them, “You are to say, 'His disciples came during the night and stole him away while we were asleep. 14 If this report gets to the governor, we will satisfy him and keep you out of trouble.’” 15 So the soldiers took the money and did as they were instructed. And this story has been widely circulated among the Jews to this very day.

 

8. The disciples respond in unbelief to the report from the women that Christ had risen from the dead.
Luke 24:9–12: When they came back from the tomb, they told all these things to the Eleven and to all the others. 10 It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the others with them who told this to the apostles. 11 But they did not believe the women, because their words seemed to them like nonsense.

 

9. Jesus appears to the disciples.
Luke 24:36–47: While they were still talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, "Peace be with you." 37 They were startled and frightened, thinking they saw a ghost. 38 He said to them, "Why are you troubled, and why do doubts rise in your minds? 39 Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have." 40 When he had said this, he showed them his hands and feet. 41 And while they still did not believe it because of joy and amazement, he asked them, "Do you have anything here to eat?" 42 They gave him a piece of broiled fish, 43 and he took it and ate it in their presence. 44 He said to them, "This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms." 45 Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures. 46 He told them, "This is what is written: The Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, 47 and repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.”

 

10. Christ appeared to many others after His resurrection.
1 Corinthians 15:3–8: For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. 6 Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. 7 Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. 8 Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me [Apostle Paul].

 

Faith Lesson from the Garden Tomb

 

1. The death, burial, and resurrection of Christ are true historical events that form the foundation to the Christian Faith.

 

2. Without Christ’s death on the Cross, our sins are not forgiven.

 

3. Without Christ’s resurrection, our faith is in vain (1 Cor. 15:14). 

 

4. No other self-acclaimed prophet has risen from the dead. The fact that Christ did separates Him from all others, proving that He was God in the flesh.

 

5. The resurrection proves that all believers will receive resurrected bodies after death.

 

6. Mary Magdalene encapsulates what it means to love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength. Do we love the Lord as Mary did?

Biblical Sites of Israel

 

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Jerusalem Overview

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Antonia Fortress

Chapel of the Ascension: Ascension & Return of Christ

Church of the Holy Sepulchre

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Garden Tomb: Resurrection of Christ

 

Gethsemane to Golgotha:

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Masada

 

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Shechem

 

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Sodom & Gomorrah

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Valley of Elah: David & Goliath

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