What a Surprise!

Matthew Bible Background

New Testament: Mark 16.1–5

To read the Bible in a year, read Mark 16 on March 17, In the year of our Lord Christ 2020

By Don Ruhl

After the death and burial of Jesus, three women bought spices to anoint His body: “Now when the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices, that they might come and anoint Him” (Mark 16.1).

Their love for Jesus drove them to go to His tomb as soon as the Sabbath was over, going very early in the morning on the first day of the week, which was Sunday: “Very early in the morning, on the first day of the week, they came to the tomb when the sun had risen” (Mark 16.2).

On the way, they were concerned about something: “And they said among themselves, ‘Who will roll away the stone from the door of the tomb for us?’” (Mark 16.3).

They had seen the burial of Jesus and knew that a large stone covered the mouth of the tomb, and they knew that they could not move it. Yet, that did not stop them from going to the tomb! They did not have a solution, but Jesus occupied their minds and they just wanted to get there. Then they learned that they did not have to be concerned anymore:

But when they looked up, they saw that the stone had been rolled away—for it was very large. And entering the tomb, they saw a young man clothed in a long white robe sitting on the right side; and they were alarmed.

– Mark 16.4–6

They would need a man, or some men to move the stone for them but when they arrived they found a man, and they were alarmed at his presence. He did not appear to be just any man, and that alarmed them (It was an angel). Also, they did not know whether he had stolen the body of Jesus, because it was not there.

Those ladies did not yet know the wonderful thing that had happened and how it would change their lives and the lives of multiplied millions of people since then.

Questions:

  • What would you have thought, if you had been those women?
  • Which women saw the empty tomb and the angel?

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