Summary: The women report sighting Jesus after the Resurrection.
“the Women’s Tale” Jesus Sightings Part 1
“Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: “I have seen the Lord!” And she told them that he had said these things to her.” John 20:18 NIV
Intro: We are starting a new Sermon Series titled “Jesus Sightings.” There are at least 11 different places where Jesus appeared of Jesus after His Resurrection. We are going to take just a couple of those today as we begin with a sermon titled “the Women’s Tale.” There are many fascinating women in the bible. In fact there are at least 188 different named women. Some were queens, some were prophetess, some were deaconess, and some were leaders in the church. Others were women of bad reputation, some met grace and faith and their lives were changed and transformed and they went on to live a very changed life.
The Gospel of Mark 16:9 tells us about Mary Magdalene before she believed in Jesus. Mary Magdalene is an example of how God’s power can change a person’s life, how that God can take someone and just transform them into a new creation. The bible describes Mary’s situation. The bible describes her situation using the prime number here. It uses the number 7. It says that she had many problems. In other words she didn’t just have one demon. She didn’t have just one problem. She had 7 demons. She had a prime multiple of 7 she had many problems and many demons in her life. Which means she didn’t just have a few problems she had an infinite number of many problems? Hers’ is a story of a radically changed life.
We know that because of the status of women in ancient days she is not listed nor any of the other women and not listed with the men as disciples but she should have been none the less.
Women were the last one’s mentioned to be at the cross and they are the first ones to be at the empty tomb. Mary Magdalene is the first one to see the risen Easter Jesus. She saw him in the garden near the empty tomb. She is the very first person to speak to the risen Christ.
Let’s take a moment and really drill down on the phrase, “he had said.” The bible simply uses three words “he had said.” “Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: “I have seen the Lord!” And she told them that he had said these things to her.” John 20:18 NIV
That makes me wonder what where the things that Jesus had said to Mary Magdalene? At the center of the Greek interlinear transliteration of the phrase “he had said.” When you look at the Greek it uses the word: λέγω legó: (it almost sounds like “let go.” (Strong's Concordance) 3004 légō means to say "laying aside the argument. It is putting the argument to rest, bringing a closure; (see Curtius, Thayer) moving to a conclusion.” So when you look at those three little words. And you really understand, it doesn’t seem like they would mean very much, “he had said.” But what it really meant was that Mary had finally removed all doubts are fears from her life this woman had concluded that the things that Jesus had said before his death were true. “He had said” these things and she believed them and so she finally brought the argument to rest in her mind and in her heart. She could bring closure finally to all the things that Jesus said and taught. So she had moved to this conclusion. Jesus had done everything he said he would do and I have truly seen the risen Lord as proof! She carries this message to the disciples. I have been to the grave of Jesus. I have seen the stone rolled away. The tomb is empty. I went to the garden to pray. There I met the risen Saviour. Jesus called me by my name. I believe everything “he had said,” I have no doubts. I have no fears. I believe in the Easter Jesus! All of that meaning is wrapped up that tiny little phrase, “he had said.”
There is story about a woman who had lived way back up a holler. She came down out the holler and joined a local church and became well known for her prayer. She always prayed the same simple prayer. She would always pray the same simple prayer, "O my Lord, thank you Jesus.” When she was called on in Sunday school class she to pray the prayer she would always say that same simple prayer. "O my Lord, thank you Jesus." When asked to say the blessing food for a meal she would pray the same simple prayer. "O my Lord, thank you Jesus." Finally somebody asked her, "Why do you just pray that same little prayer?" She said, "Well, what I am doing is really combining the only two prayers I have ever known. We said, I live way back up in a holler. Some nights there would be people come up there and cause trouble. Maybe they were trespassers, or moon shiners and my husband would go out on the porch and he would take a shotgun while he was out there I would pray, 'O my Lord.' But when I wake up the next morning and everything was calm and would say, 'Thank you Jesus.' She would say it was a long ways for my daughter to walk in the dark to the end of road for me to take her to meet the school bus a pretty good ways down the holler so that she could go school. So, when I would take her to put my daughter on the bus I didn’t know what might happen that day I so I would always pray, 'O my Lord.' But when she would come home safe in the evening I would pray, 'Thank you Jesus.'" She said, "Those are the only two prayers I have ever known and when I got to church and saw how good God is and that I had found a community of faith filled with loving people I just put the two prayers together, "O my Lord, thank you Jesus."