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The Brokenhearted Mary Magdalene

In our daily meditations, we look at John's testimony of what the resurrection of Christ was like for the followers of Jesus when it happened. After John and Peter ran to the tomb, Mary was possibly exhausted after running, and she may have run to others with the news as well. When she caught her breath, she hurried back to the tomb, trying to grasp what had happened. Her emotions got the best of her when she returned to the tomb; John and Peter had already left.

10Then the disciples went back to where they were staying. 11Now Mary stood outside the tomb crying. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb 12and saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus’ body had been, one at the head and the other at the foot (John 20:10-12).

Many have heard the resurrection account so often that it has become very familiar. It is hard to imagine what it was like for the disciples on that first morning of resurrection. They still failed to grasp the concept of the resurrected Jesus, despite the Lord's attempts to inform them ahead of time about what would happen. Mary Magdalene could not accept the thought, perhaps because it was too fantastic to believe. Psychologists call this state of mind Cognitive Dissonance, a mental discomfort when your beliefs counter the new information you receive. How could Jesus be alive when she so clearly saw Him crucified? (Matthew 27:56). How can a person overcome death? Her only thought was the urgency to find her Lord's body. The body was no longer there; the only reasonable explanation in Mary's mind was that it was stolen from the tomb.

Mary Magdalene was a woman delivered of seven demons by the Lord Jesus (Mark 16:9). Gratitude for her deliverance welled up with sincere love for the Lord because of the grace, mercy, and power He had bestowed on her. Whosoever is forgiven much loves much. It is a beautiful thought that the Lord appeared first to a woman who had been in the depths of sin and evil, now transformed by the grace and power of God. “The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit” (Psalm 34:18). Apart from the Christian faith, all religions look down on women as not reputable witnesses, but not Jesus. He elevates women to equal citizens in the kingdom of God (Galatians 3:28).

Mary Magdalene is a picture of the very people Christ has come to save. Jesus said, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners” (Mark 2:17). It was a traumatic experience for Mary to witness Jesus crucified (Mark 15:40), and I am sure she shed many tears that weekend. In front of the tomb that morning, her emotions got the better of her again. John tells us that she was crying as she stood outside the tomb (John 20:2). "Crying" is the Greek word klaiõ, indicating more of a loud lamentation than a quiet sobbing. When she looked inside the tomb, she saw two angels seated at the foot and the head of the empty cocoon-like strips of burial cloth. The Roman soldiers were gone at this point, terrified at the sight of the two angels, but Mary was in emotional shock and only had one thought: “Where is the Lord?” For all those who long for His appearance, Mary's cry resonates with ours, "Where is the Lord?" Genuine believers want an end to the way of this world, the evil that we see, and the injustice that runs rampant. Come, Lord Jesus, we long for your presence and deliverance! Let's look at Jesus revealing Himself to Mary tomorrow. Keith Thomas

The YouTube video of this talk with closed captions (subtitles) in 65 languages is found at the following link:

The written notes are at the following link, Study 64, The Resurrection of Christ.


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