|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
16:9-13 Better news cannot be brought to disciples in tears, than to tell them of Christ's resurrection. And we should study to comfort disciples that are mourners, by telling them whatever we have seen of Christ. It was a wise providence that the proofs of Christ's resurrection were given gradually, and admitted cautiously, that the assurance with which the apostles preached this doctrine afterwards might the more satisfy. Yet how slowly do we admit the consolations which the word of God holds forth! Therefore while Christ comforts his people, he often sees it needful to rebuke and correct them for hardness of heart in distrusting his promise, as well as in not obeying his holy precepts.
Verse 9. - Now when he was risen early on the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, from whom he had cast out seven devils. St. Luke (Luke 8:2) mentions that "seven devils had gone out of her;" and St. Mark repeats it here, to show the power of love and penitence, that she was the first to be permitted to see the risen Savior. The vision of the angel had scared her, and she said nothing; but the actual sight of her risen Lord gave her confidence, and she went immediately, in obedience to his command, and told the disciples (see John 20:11-18). She had lingered about his tomb; her strong affection riveted her to the spot.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week,.... Though the word "Jesus" is not in the text, it is rightly supplied; for of the rising of no other, can the words be understood; and so the Persic version supplies "Messiah", or "Christ"; that Jesus rose from the dead on the first day of the week, agrees with the accounts of all the evangelists, and is here expressly affirmed; the phrase, "the first day of the week", is so indeed placed, as that it may be thought to connected with the following words; as it is by some; fancying there would otherwise be a disagreement with Matthew 28:1, whereas there is none; See Gill on Matthew 28:1 though it is true also, that he did appear on that day to Mary Magdalene, it being the same day he rose from the dead. But the true reading and pointing are as here placed; and the phrase belongs to, and points out the day of Christ's rising from the dead; and which ambiguity is removed in the Syriac version, which renders it, "now early on the first day of the week he rose"; and so the Persic version, "the Messiah", or "Christ, therefore on the morning of the, first day, rose from the dead": and that he rose early on that day, is clear from the women, who set out at the end of the sabbath, when that was past and over; and got to the sepulchre by the time the day dawned; and one of them, while it was dark, and all of them by break of day, at least by sunrising, and he was then risen:
he appeared first to Mary Magdalene; in the habit of a gardener, for whom she took him at first; and this was at the sepulchre, where she staid after the disciples were gone. That she was the very first person that Christ showed himself to, after his resurrection, may be concluded from hence, and from the account the Evangelist John has given, John 20:14, nor is there any reason to think, that before this, he appeared to his mother, of which the evangelists are entirely silent. This was a very great favour, and an high honour that was bestowed upon her; and who had received large favours from him before:
out of whom he had cast seven devils, see Luke 8:2. And if she had been a very wicked person, as she is commonly thought to be, and very likely she had been, since Satan had such a power over her, as to lodge seven devils in her, it is an instance of abounding grace, that Christ should heap up favours on such an one; and she should be the first that he should appear to and converse with after his resurrection.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
9. Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils—There is some difficulty here, and different ways of removing it have been adopted. She had gone with the other women to the sepulchre (Mr 16:1), parting from them, perhaps, before their interview with the angel, and on finding Peter and John she had come with them back to the spot; and it was at this second visit, it would seem, that Jesus appeared to this Mary, as detailed in Joh 20:11-18. To a woman was this honor given to be the first that saw the risen Redeemer, and that woman was NOT his virgin-mother.
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