John 20:6-7 (21st Century King James Version) "Then came Simon Peter following him, and went into the sepulcher and saw the linen cloths as they lay and the napkin that had been about His head, not lying with the linen cloths, but wrapped together in a place by itself."
The hit show C.S.I. has been around for a long time, and although I am not a fan, I am fascinated by documentaries about real "Crime Scene Investigations". The training, strategy, procedures and the brilliant minds that help solve the crimes are amazing to me.
Imagine if there was an episode featuring the investigation after the death and resurrection of Jesus, and I was on the case. There is one detail I would make sure got special attention. It was when Mary went to the tomb early in the morning and found it "empty", and how she told Peter and John the amazing news. I would have the cameras zoom in on Peter's face in shock, and then scan the tomb at what he saw.
The "empty" tomb was not completely empty, sure it was missing a body, and that fact should stop us in our tracks. But as the investigation unravels, the clue involving the linen cloths that were left behind would spark questions such as, "Who would take the time to unwrap a corpse? Could this be a case of grave robbery? Maybe by His disciples?" They observe the large stone that was rolled aside, and the broken Roman seal, and question the soldiers guarding the tomb, "Who could have overpowered them and moved such a heavy stone? Nah, too unlikely.
The burial cloth itself would reveal that it was recently purchased by someone very wealthy who could afford such costly material. "What thief would toss aside such valuable merchandise?" Then the camera zooms in on a key clue, the folded napkin. There is more to this than meets the eye. According to Barbara Richmond's book Jewish Insights of the New Testament, the proper way to express gratitude after an evening of food and fellowship was to crumple your napkin. But if you had an unpleasant evening, you would fold the napkin and leave it as you found it. Jesus took the time to fold the napkin as if to say, "I've been to the grave, I will not return, not doing this again".
Jesus who faced death on our behalf and was raised to new life, will never die again. He did this once, for all sin, He's not going to "die again". The "Christ Scene Investigation" is conclusive, solved, no longer a mystery. The empty tomb wasn't completely empty, God left us with key information, His Word, the truth that has the power to set us free! Jesus died, was buried, and He rose again. Case closed. Jesus died, never to die again. It is finished, paid in full!