179. Jesus’ resurrection- Matt. 28:1-10, Mark 16:1-10, Luke 24:1-12, John 20:1-18
-There are different accounts of the events of the resurrection that are difficult, but not impossible, to coordinate. Matthew and Mark speak of only one angel, and it is sitting in different places. Luke and John tell of two angels that are standing in Luke and sitting in John at the place where Jesus’ Head and Feet were. It is apparent that Mary Magdalene, whom Jesus had cast out seven demons, was, along with James and John’s mother Mary, there first to bring anointing spices for His body. They were wondering how they would get in to the tomb with the large stone in front of it, but they found it had been rolled away. An angel of the LORD came with a great earthquake and rolled the stone away, and the guards who were protecting the site, according to Matthew’s gospel, became incapacitated from fear and were in the state of comatose like dead men. Since they went out it stands to reason they never actually saw the risen Christ and could go along with the deception they were paid off to keep in confidence (Matthew 28:11-15).
-Luke and John focus on the disciples a little bit more with Peter and John running to the tomb finding it empty. This discrepancy of who got there first is best concluded by this. Peter and John both ran to the gravesite. John wins the race and looks in the opening, but it is Peter who first stoops into the tomb to see that no body was present, which John later observes. Luke does not include John in his account.
-This all happened in the early morning hours of the first day of the week after the Sabbath, which was Sunday. Jesus appears to Mary Magdalene there in the garden according to John and Matthew’s gospels, but she is told not to cling to Him (a statement meant to say there is much to be done) as she and the other Mary worship at His feet (Matthew 28:9, John 20:11-18), but to go and tell of this resurrection and coming ascension to the Father to the disciples. This is what will initiate the Kingdom eventually in all its fullness with the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit. If Mary had kept clinging onto this earthly, incarnate One of the Godhead, the Kingdom would be stuck to a single location. But, and this was Jesus’ point, the message must now be spread all over not being contained in one spot.
-The recognition is slow and fear abounds, but the Savior’s appearances begin to erase the unbelief and skepticism as Jesus’ predictive words start to be remembered and joy abounds in this miracle of miracles. He is no longer in the tomb! He is raised and will go before them to Galilee as well as have other appearances in Jerusalem!
-*Application* The resurrection makes all the difference in the world to our faith. If we believe that God is raised from the grave we can be saved (Romans 10:9). Without the resurrection our faith is worthless (1 Corinthians 15). With the resurrection, however, we have eternal hope and joy forever no matter what the situation is here on this earth. We have multiple and detailed accounts of the events of Christ Jesus’ resurrection. Over 500 people witnessed the risen Savior before His ascension back to the Father (1 Corinthians 15:6) including the disciples that surrendered their lives and well-being for the King. They would have never sacrificed so much for a fraud. They had nothing to gain by a deception in this matter. What changed them was real and should strengthen our faith to live boldly for the risen Lord!
Verse to Memorize- Luke 24:7