Text: Matthew 28:1-10 and John 20:3-18
Event(s): He is risen; The women worship the risen Lord and go tell the disciples
Matthew 28:1 “Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to see the tomb.” Mary Magdalene was the woman from whom Jesus had cast out seven demons (Luke 8:2). The other Mary was the mother of James and Joseph. Mark also records that Salome accompanied them. Salome was the mother of Zebedee’s sons, James and John. Luke also makes mention of Joanna and others. Joanna was the wife of Chuza, Herod’s steward, and was one of Jesus’ companions in Galilee.
Matthew 28:2 “an angel descended from heaven…came and rolled the stone..” Luke and John record that there were two angels present. Matthew and Mark only mention one. That’s only because they focused more on the spokesperson of the two. Again, we are reminded that God confirms at thing at the mouth of two or three witnesses (2 Corinthians 13:1). The stone as not rolled away so that Jesus could walk out, but to let the disciples in to see the evidence of an empty tomb.
Matthew 28:7b “He is going before you into Galilee” Again we see it is very much the nature of God to “go before us.”
Matthew 28:10 “Go and tell My brethren…” Notice the change in how Jesus refers to them now, His “brethren.” Romans 8:29 says, “For God knew his people in advance, and he chose them to become like his Son, so that his Son would be the firstbornamong many brothers and sisters.” Jesus made it possible for us to be brought into His family.
John 20:14 “and did not know it was Jesus.” Mary was emotionally distraught, her eyes filled with tears, no doubt blurring her vision. But there seems to have been something about Jesus’ resurrection body that made immediate recognition of Him difficult for many people.
John 20:16 “Jesus said to her, ‘Mary!’” There was something int he way Jesus said her name that caused Mary to recognize Jesus. “..The sheep follow him because they know his voice and recognize his call.” John 10:4b
Today’s Takeaway: As painful as it is to read through the accounts of all that Jesus endured leading up to and upon the cross, the complete work of His death, burial and resurrection should produce within us unspeakable joy. If we focus on the pain He experienced and don’t push through to the joy of His resurrection, we’ve missed it. Hebrews 12:2 reminds us, “looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross,” Let us not over-associate with the pain of the cross and under-emphasize the joy of His resurrection. Celebrate all that He finished.
Additional (optional) reading: The parallel accounts of today’s events may be found in Mark 16:1-7; Luke 24:1-7 and John 20:10