Unlimited: The Eye-Witnesses to the Burial
Jul 1, 2021 211
Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joseph saw where he was laid (Mark 15:47, NIV).
The greatest historical claim of Christianity is that Jesus Christ rose from the dead.
This was an absurd claim to make in an ancient culture that considered itself highly sophisticated and in which the concept of bodily resurrection did not exist at all.
That’s why the first believers in the resurrection of Jesus were always open to the attack that their faith was based on a lie.
And that’s also why the details that Mark adds to his gospel are so important. They highlight the factual authenticity to his account.
He told us that Joseph of Arimathea sealed the tomb of Jesus with a large stone. So, now look at what he writes next.
What Mark says here is that there is no doubt that Jesus was laid inside the tomb and that the tomb was sealed with the stone, because eyewitnesses saw it happen, and he makes the point of naming them.
Mark makes a big deal about the stone, because later he will point out that there were also eyewitnesses to the fact that the stone was rolled away on Sunday morning, and that Jesus was no longer there.
And when Mark wrote this, these weren’t just eyewitnesses in history, but real people, who were still alive, and who could be cross-examined.
However, there is something strange about these eyewitnesses. They were women, whose testimony had no legal validity in the courts of that culture.
And any testimony by Mary Magdalene in particular would have been even more rapidly discounted.
Yet, these were the key witnesses whom God chose for the resurrection of Christ.
– Eliezer Gonzalez
Eli’s Reflection: Think about the people whom God chooses to be his witnesses in the world. Why has he chosen you?