2/8/12 V. 1, Just as dawn was breaking on Sunday morning the women who loved and followed Jesus returned to the tomb with the burial spices they had prepared. There wasn’t much reason for them to go that early except that they were so grieved over what had happened to Jesus. It’s a fitting picture of their devotion to Jesus.
They wouldn’t have known about the guard around the tomb, which Luke doesn’t talk about. John mentions that they were wondering who would roll the stone away for them. They would have really been concerned and perhaps not even gone to the tomb had they known it had been sealed with Roman seals.
V. 2-4, But they went knowing none of this. When they had arrived they found the stone rolled away already. They went in and not finding the body of the Lord Jesus (the only time the book of Luke refers to Jesus this way) they were perplexed. On top of everything else that had happened to their beloved master now even His body was gone.
Suddenly, though, two men appeared beside them in brilliant clothing.
V. 5-6, The women were terrified and dropped to the ground bowing before them. The angels asked rhetorically why they were looking for someone living among the place of the dead. He isn’t here. He has risen. How the angels must have enjoyed delivering that message! They went on to remind the women that Jesus Himself had told them all about this.
V. 7, The Son of Man was going to be given over to wicked people, be crucified, and on the third day rise again.
V. 8, Then the women recalled Jesus’ words, which is more than can be said of the disciple they told shortly thereafter.
V. 9, They believed the angels and returned and told the eleven and the rest, whoever they were.
V. 10, It was a group of women, among them Mary Magdalene, Joanna, and James’ mother also named Mary.
V. 11, Maybe it was the fact that it was women who bore the message that made the disciple reject the story. Wouldn’t Jesus this news have been given to them first, as Jesus’ especially chosen apostles? If so, then their desire for greatness was still alive and well.
Maybe it wasn’t the fact that it was women but just that the story seemed too fantastic. If so, then their belief in the power of God was still weak.
Whatever the underlying reason the disciples rejected the women’s story as nonsense and refused to believe it.
V. 12, Peter however, gave them the benefit of the doubt. He ran to the tomb to check it out for himself. The tomb would have been tiny, as all were. He bent down and according to John he went into the tomb. He found only the burial cloth there.
He returned “wondering” what had happened. This word is variously translated. NASB translates it “marveling.” It doesn’t necessarily indicate disbelief. It seems that Peter if he didn’t believe as least wasn’t opposed to believing. Indeed, he was ready to believe. He may have been just trying to process the event.