Resurrection Matt. 28:3-10 & 16-20 April 11, 2004
(All scripture from the Holman Christian Standard Bible)

Women need to enjoy the truth that they were among the last at the cross, and the first to visit the tomb. The commission to tell about the risen Christ came first to them, as both the angel and Jesus told them to go and tell. In the first century women were not usually considered valuable as witnesses in legal matters. This information further highlights how Christ honors women. Did you see the movie The Passion of Christ? This lessons focuses on the rest of the story.

1.    Resurrection and the . . Sightings. v 1-8

A.    Sightings and the . . Devotion of the Ladies. v 1
        After the Sabbath, as the first day of the week was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to view the tomb.

B.    Sightings and the . . Descending of the Angels. v 2
        2 Suddenly there was a violent earthquake, because an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and approached [the tomb]. He rolled back the stone and was sitting on it.

C.    Sightings and the . . Dress of the Angels. v 3
        3 His appearance was like lightning, and his robe was as white as snow.

D.    Sightings and the . . Dread of the Guards. . v 4
        4 The guards were so shaken from fear of him that they became like dead men.

E.    Sightings and the . . Directions of the Angels. v 5-7
        5 But the angel told the women, "Don't be afraid, because I know you are looking for Jesus
who was crucified. 6 He is not here For He has been resurrected, just as He said. Come and
see the place where He lay. 7 Then go quickly and tell His disciples, 'He has been raised
from the dead. In fact, He is going ahead of you to Galilee; you will see Him there.' Listen, I
have told you."

F.    Sightings and the . . Departure of the Women. v 8
        8 So, departing quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, they ran to tell His disciples
the news.

        These ladies demonstrated their devotion to the Lord by coming to the tomb. They experienced many sights because of their action. The Angel descended, and rolled away the stone, and then sat upon it. Why did he sit on the stone? My friend, Burnell Lewis, says "The Angel wanted to see all Heaven break lose." I like that, and no one ever before had seen a resurrection. It is interesting; the text speaks of the guards as dead men, but the women, although fearful, did not have this kind of fear. The Lord provides a capacity to understand spiritual events The angel comforted the ladies, and gave them directions to go and tell, and the ladies urgently departed.

2.    Resurrection and the . . Style of Jesus. v 9-10
A.    Style In His . . Address. v 9a
        9 Just then Jesus met them and said, "Good morning"

B.    Style In His . . Acceptance. v 9b
        They came up, took hold of His feet, and worshiped Him.

C.    Style In His . . Authority. v 10
        10 Then Jesus told them, "Do not be afraid. Go and tell My brothers to leave for
Galilee, and they will see Me there."

        These women did not expect to receive an additional appearance of Jesus, He surprised them.
I like our new translation as it translates His greeting; as, "Good Morning." I can see Him saying that with a beautiful smile on His face. The ladies bowed in adoration to the Lord. Jesus then spoke with authority and told the women to go tell.

3.    Resurrection and the . . Story of the Guards and Priests. v 11-15

A.    The Story of the Guards . . Reported. v 11
        11 As they were on their way, some of the guard came into the city and reported to the chief
priests everything that had happened.

B.    The Story of the Guards . . Reconstructed. v 12-14
        12 After the priests had assembled with the elders and agreed on a plan, they gave the
soldiers a large sum of money 13 and told them, "Say this, 'His disciples came during the
night and stole Him while we were sleeping.' 14 If this reaches the governor's ears, we will
deal with him and keep you out of trouble."

C.    The Story of the Guards . . Repeated. v 15
        15 So they took the money and did as they were instructed. And this story has been spread
among Jewish people to this day.

        It is interesting to note the differences in the action of the guards as compared to the women. They reported their story to the priests without joy but fear, and that brings about a reconstruction of the story. The priests fabricated their version of the resurrection, and this story finds an audience even today. But the fabricated stories can not explain the transformation in the ministry of the Apostles, or the first century Christians. Many first century believers died for their faith, and all of the Apostles except John suffered a violent death, If they thought the resurrection of Christ was a hoax they would not have died to defend it.

4.    Resurrection and the . . Submission of the Disciples. v 16-17

A.    Submission In the . . Directions Given. v 16
        16 The 11 disciples traveled to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had directed them.

B.    Submission In the . . Devotion Given. v 17
        17 When they saw Him, they worshiped, but some doubted.

        The apostles were submissive to the directions of Jesus as told to them by the women. I wonder why Jesus did not tell the apostles Himself rather than relaying the message through these ladies? Does this teach us everyone has importance in relating the message of Jesus? When the men saw Jesus they worshiped Him. At this point Jesus is obviously recognized as the resurrected Lord and Savior. We serve a risen Savior.

5.    Resurrection and the . . Supremacy of Jesus. v 18-20

A.    Supreme Authority,. v 18
        18 Then Jesus came near and said to them, "All authority has been given to Me
in heaven and on earth.

B.    Supreme Announcement. v 19-20
        19 Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age."

        We call these verses the great commission of our Lord.. They are verses of supreme authority, as Jesus says, "All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth." We should follow Him and His word with more diligence. The supreme announcement He makes instructs us, as we go to make disciples, baptize them, and teach them. Then the Lord promises to be with us all the way to the end. What a promise, and what a blessing. We serve a risen Savior. Amen? Amen