The Resurrection - The Two Mary's - John 20:1,2
April 19, 2022, 9:00 AM

Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance.     So she came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, "They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don't know where they have put him!"  

At the beginning and at the end of Jesus life on earth Mary was there for her Son. But beside her was another Mary who could be contrasted with Jesus’ mother. One might represent the celebration of God coming into the world. The other representing God saving the world from sin.     

Mary Magdalene was from the area of Magdala. Mary Magdalene was plagued with seven demons. Although the Bible does not say so, some think this Mary was the same woman who was caught in adultery and later washed Jesus’ feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair.     

There certainly was a dramatic change in her character once she was freed of her demons. Mary was part of a group who ministered to Jesus with offerings, meals, and whatever help they could give in their travels. They were faithful in following Christ. It made no difference what type of woman she had been, she was no longer now that she had been forgiven. She was free from demonic oppression and she was free from scorn of sin.    

When word came that Christ was arrested during all the events we discussed, she along with Mary His mother and the other Mary, were all there witnessing His false trial, beatings, walk to Golgotha, and crucifixion. She wept with the others as she witnessed His anguish and heard Jesus cries, “My God, My God, Why hast thou forsaken me?” She heard the cry, “Father into thy hands I commit my spirit", and drop His head with “It is finished.”     

Both Marys were there when Jesus was taken down from the cross and among the last ones who went with Joseph from Arimathea and Nicodemus when Jesus was placed in the tomb. They were among the last to leave and the first to be there early Sunday morning.     

Mary Magdalene's passion and devotion were recognized by all the gospel writers. Was it any wonder that she was the first to whom Jesus revealed Himself that resurrection morning?  He didn’t look at her past, or her sin, or the things in her life for which she should be ashamed. All of the past remains in the past and what we witness is her new heart. That is the wonderful thing about being born again. That is the wonderful thing about resurrections. We no longer need to worry about the past wrongs in our lives. They are made right when we confess. We are forgiven. Mary was clean because of the touch of Jesus Christ on her life. Now there is recorded an even better relationship.      

The resurrection allows all our past to be wiped clean for the asking, if you trust in Jesus to be your Savior. Friends, when we see our past and all that is unholy and prideful, sinful and selfish; we can put all that in the past because of the death and resurrection of Jesus. Satan no longer has any power over us. The resurrection points to His power to forgive. There is nothing better than to see a young person grow up in the church, accept Christ, and live for Him all their lives: but it also seems that the one saved from sinful background has a deeper appreciation and commitment to Christ knowing the length from which they have come.  

Application:  We don’t have to be carrying the past any more, but have new passions.  Ask God to direct you. 

Prayers:   Lord, what amazing grace you offer us, the redeemed.   Help me to follow you in the way that Mary did by ministering to the body of Christ and all those here on earth.    

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