[The Gospel According to…] Matthew 28

Bible opened to Matthew 28 with pascha 70% cacao dark chocolate and glass of milk

Today’s passage: Matthew 28

So, on the Sunday following Jesus’ crucifixion, two Marys pay a visit to Jesus’ tomb–but they find the guards gone, the stone rolled away from the tomb entrance, and an angel waiting there. Recall that the Greek word we translate as ‘gospel’ is ‘εὐαγγέλιον;’ it’s got the word ‘angel,’ meaning ‘messenger,’ right there in the middle of it. And what’s the angel’s message? “[Jesus] is not here, for He has risen, just as He said” (v.6).

Has Jesus told these women that he was going to rise from the dead? As far as I can recall, that privileged information was for his disciples’ ears only (and even they didn’t really understand it until after the fact). I imagine the two Marys looking at each other and the angel like, “Yeah, we didn’t get the memo.” This good news is completely unforeseen for them–they were expecting to find a grave and a corpse.

Verse 17 stood out to me: “When they saw Him, they worshiped Him; but some were doubtful.” Does that strike you as weird? What exactly are their doubts? If a person claims to be the Son of God, then dies and rises again just like he said he would, why would you withhold your reverence for him? Matthew doesn’t say what their doubts are. He concludes, instead, with Jesus’ words commissioning his disciples to continue his work and reassuring them of his continued presence:

All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age. (vv.18-20)

Here we’ve reached the end of part one of our four-part journey into the gospels. Having come this far, I think we can conclude that the gospel, according to Matthew, is this: “In accordance with God’s promises through prophecy, the Messiah has come to restore what is broken in God’s creation, ransoming it by dying and rising from the dead.” How would you articulate Matthew’s conception of the gospel? Perhaps you have noticed something that I have failed to incorporate into my summation.

Today’s chocolate is the Pascha dark. When you get down to the last two rows or so, you pretty much have to give up on getting a clean break.

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7 thoughts on “[The Gospel According to…] Matthew 28

  1. Lovely post. I just caught your blogs on the gospel of Matthew today. I will read the other posts tomorrow! Having read the book of Matthew many times, one can still find something extra to learn!

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  2. A little detail in John 20:14.

    We all know that ladies have eagle eyes. After a meeting in the “bored” room, they can tell what tie the MD wore, how many jewels in the Rolex on the right arm of the CIO, even that he wore a watch, its colour and that it’s a Rolex. Oh, that the GM’s iPhone 4S has a crack in the rear glass and that the COO’s 5S had bent in his back pocket. Or the MontBlanc pen the FM used when he signed cheques.

    Girls don’t let any little detail go unnoticed.

    Rewind to the grave. When He was laid to rest, pieces of flesh were missing. There were cuts and bruises. The face they knew so well ended up disformed, misfigured.

    So she finds this gent with no sign of abuse. A healed body. Must be the gardener?

    Why did she not recognise Jesus? How many people even notice this?

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    1. Good question. It’s been a long-time puzzle for me why folks don’t recognize the resurrected Jesus. Sure, Mary realizes it’s him after a short conversation, but why does she take so long for it to click? As you point out, why doesn’t she recognize him on sight? And why do the two disciples on the road to Emmaus have a walk and an entire meal with him before it registers that hey, it’s their resurrected Lord? It’s weird, no question. It almost seems like Jesus in his resurrected body has powers of obfuscation or something.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It is very simple: Jesus came out of there:

        – healed
        – sanctified
        – glorified

        Totally blessed beyond recognition. Literally. This is the biggest message I could ever bring. I hope that some will realise how much different the risen Jesus is.

        Christianity somehow never advanced beyond the limp flesh on the cross. This is why there is so little real power in a much proclaimed faith. Let us hope that we finally wake up to this Jesus we somehow overlook. He has changed completely.

        Get the picture?

        Like

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