Matthew 28:1
In the end of the sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre.
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(1) It will probably help the student to place before him, in their right order, the recorded appearances of our Lord Jesus after His resurrection:—

(1.) To Mary Magdalene, John 20:14; Mark 16:9.

(2.) To Mary Magdalene and the other Mary, Matthew 28:9.

(3.) To Peter, Luke 24:34; 1Corinthians 15:5.

(4.) To Cleopas and another disciple at Emmaus, Luke 24:13-35.

(5.) To the eleven, or more strictly, the ten Apostles at Jerusalem, Mark 16:14; Luke 24:36; John 20:19.

(6.) To the eleven Apostles at Jerusalem, John 20:26.

(7.) To the disciples—five named, and others—by the Sea of Galilee, John 21:1-24.

(8.) To the Eleven on a mountain in Galilee, Matthew 28:16; Mark 16:15.

(9.) To the five hundred brethren, possibly identical with.

(8), 1Corinthians 15:6.

(10.) To James the brother of the Lord, 1Corinthians 15:7.

(11.) To the Eleven at Jerusalem before the Ascension, Mark 16:19-20; Luke 24:50; Acts 1:3-12.

In the end of the sabbath.—Literally, late on the Sabbath; St. Mark, “when the Sabbath was over;” St. Luke, “very early in the morning.” St. Matthew’s addition, “as it began to dawn,” brings his narrative into harmony with St. Luke’s. The order of facts appears to have been as follows:—(1) Mary Magdalene and the other Mary, the mother of James the Little, watched the burial just before the Sabbath began on the evening of the day of the crucifixion. (2.) They stayed at home during the twenty-four hours of the Sabbath. (3.) On the evening of that day (the Sabbath-rest being over) they bought spices for the embalmment. (4.) At earliest dawn, say about 4 A.M., they set out to make their way to the sepulchre, and they reached it when the sun had risen (Mark 16:2).

Matthew 28:1. In the end of the sabbath — Or rather, After the sabbath, as οψε σαββατων may be properly translated. Thus, in Philostratus, οψε των Τρωικων signifies, after the Trojan war; οψε μυστηριων, after the mysteries were ended. And in other authors, οψε τουτων is, after these things; οψε νυκτος, after night; see many examples of this in Stephanus. And so this perfectly agrees with the other evangelists, who say what is here related was done when the sabbath was ended, Mark 16:1; or the first day of the week, Luke 24:1; John 20:1. And perhaps Matthew here mentions σαββατων, sabbaths, in the plural, because there were two sabbaths in that week, the paschal sabbath on Friday, and the ordinary sabbath on Saturday. As it began to dawn toward, &c. — Τη επιφωσκουση εις μιαν σαββατων, when it began to dawn into the first day of the week, that is, Sunday, or the Lord’s day; for μια των σαββατων always signifies the first day of the week, or the Lord’s day, or the day of his resurrection from the dead: and thus the word μια usually signifies in the Septuagint, when it is joined with days, weeks, or months; as Genesis 1:5, The evening and morning were, ημερα μια, the first day: Exodus 40:2; Ezra 3:6; Ezra 10:17, ημερα μια του μηνος, is the first day of the month. See note on 1 Corinthians 16:2. On this day, in the evening, Christ appeared to the eleven, John 20:19; and again, John 20:26; and to the two disciples, Luke 24:13.

Came Mary Magdalene, and the other Mary, (see on chap. Matthew 27:61,) to see the sepulchre — To see if all things were as they had left them the preceding evening. It appears from Mark 16:1, that they were accompanied by Salome: and from Luke 24:10, that they were soon joined by Joanna, and other female friends, who were to meet them there. These women had bought, and now brought with them, spices, which they had prepared to embalm the body of Jesus, to do which, it seems, was their principal reason for visiting the sepulchre so early this morning: from which it is evident, that notwithstanding Christ had repeatedly and explicitly foretold that he should rise from the dead the third day, they had no faith in his predictions. And yet they were truly pious women, and certainly genuine and very faithful followers of Jesus, evidently more attached to him than even the apostles themselves, and more bold and courageous in his cause. So slow of heart are the best disposed of mankind to believe what the Lord hath spoken.

28:1-8 Christ rose the third day after his death; that was the time he had often spoken of. On the first day of the first week God commanded the light to shine out of darkness. On this day did He who is the Light of the world, shine out of the darkness of the grave; and this day is from henceforward often mentioned in the New Testament, as the day which Christians religiously observed in solemn assemblies, to the honour of Christ. Our Lord Jesus could have rolled back the stone by his own power, but he chose to have it done by an angel. The resurrection of Christ, as it is the joy of his friends, so it is the terror and confusion of his enemies. The angel encouraged the women against their fears. Let the sinners in Zion be afraid. Fear not ye, for his resurrection will be your consolation. Our communion with him must be spiritual, by faith in his word. When we are ready to make this world our home, and to say, It is good to be here, then let us remember our Lord Jesus is not here, he is risen; therefore let our hearts rise, and seek the things that are above. He is risen, as he said. Let us never think that strange which the word of Christ has told us to expect; whether the sufferings of this present time, or the glory that is to be revealed. It may have a good effect upon us, by faith to view the place where the Lord lay. Go quickly. It was good to be there, but the servants of God have other work appointed. Public usefulness must be chosen before the pleasure of secret communion with God. Tell the disciples, that they may be comforted under their present sorrows. Christ knows where his disciples dwell, and will visit them. Even to those at a distance from the plenty of the means of grace, he will graciously manifest himself. The fear and the joy together quickened their pace. The disciples of Christ should be forward to make known to each other their experiences of communion with their Lord; and should tell others what God has done for their souls.In the end of the sabbath - The word "end" here means the same as "after" the Sabbath - that is, after the Sabbath was fully completed or finished, and may be expressed in this manner: "In the night following the Sabbath, for the Sabbath closed at sunset, as it began to dawn," etc.

As it began to dawn toward the first day of the week - The word "dawn" is not of necessity in the original. The word there properly means as the first day "approached," or drew on, without specifying the precise time. Mark says Mark 16:1-2 that it was after "the sabbath was past, and very early in the morning, at the rising of the sun" - that is, not that the sun "was risen," but that it was about to rise, or at the early break of day. Luke says Luke 24:1 that it was "very early in the morning;" in the Greek text, "deep twilight," or when there was scarcely any light. John Joh 20:1 says it was "very early, while it was yet dark" - that is, it was not yet full daylight, or the sun had not yet risen. The time when they came, therefore, was at the break of day, when the sun was about to rise, but while it was yet so dark as to render objects obscure, or not distinctly visible.

The first day of the week - The day which is observed by Christians as the Sabbath. The Jews observed the seventh day of the week, or our Saturday. During that day our Saviour was in the grave. As he rose on the morning of the first day, that day has always been observed in commemoration of so glorious an event.

Came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary - From Mary Magdalene Christ had cast out seven devils. Grateful for his great mercy, she was one of his firmest and most faithful followers, and was first at the sepulchre, and was first permitted to see her risen Lord. The "other Mary" was not the mother of Jesus, but the mother of James and Joses (Mark). Mark says that "Salome" attended them. Salome was the wife of Zebedee, and the mother of James and John. From Luke Luke 24:10 it appears that Joanna, wife of Chusa, Herod's steward (see Luke 8:3), was with them. These four women, Mark says Mark 16:1, having bought sweet spices, came to anoint him. They had prepared a part of them on the evening before the Sabbath, Luke 23:56. They now, according to Mark, completed the preparation and bought more; or the meaning in Mark may be merely that, "having bought" sweet spices, without specifying the time when, they came now to embalm him. John mentions only Mary Magdalene. He does this, probably, because his object was to give a particular account of her interview with the risen Saviour. There is no contradiction among the evangelists; for while one mentions only the names of a part of those who were there, he does not deny that "others" were present also. It is an old maxim, that "he who mentions a few does not deny that there are more."

To see the sepulchre - To see whether was as it had been left on the evening when he was laid there. To see if the stone was still there, by which they would know that he had not been removed. Mark and Luke say that the design of their coming was to anoint him with the sweet spices which they had prepared. Matthew does not mention that, but he does not "deny" that that was the ultimate design of their coming. It is not improbable that they might have known the manner in which he was buried, with a large quantity of myrrh and aloes; but that was done in haste - it was done by depositing the myrrh and aloes, without mixture or preparation, in the grave-clothes. They came that they might embalm his body more deliberately, or at least that they might "anoint the bandages" and complete the work of embalming.


Mt 28:1-15. Glorious Angelic Announcement on the First Day of the Week, that Christ Is Risen—His Appearance to the Women—The Guards Bribed to Give a False Account of the Resurrection. ( = Mr 16:1-8; Lu 24:1-8; Joh 20:1).

The Resurrection Announced to the Women (Mt 28:1-8).

1. In the end of the sabbath, as it began to dawn—after the Sabbath, as it grew toward daylight.

toward the first day of the week—Luke (Lu 24:1) has it, "very early in the morning"—properly, "at the first appearance of daybreak"; and corresponding with this, John (Joh 20:1) says, "when it was yet dark." See on [1384]Mr 16:2. Not an hour, it would seem, was lost by those dear lovers of the Lord Jesus.

came Mary Magdalene, and the other Mary—"the mother of James and Joses" (see on [1385]Mt 27:56; [1386]Mt 27:61).

to see the sepulchre—with a view to the anointing of the body, for which they had made all their preparations. (See on [1387]Mr 16:1, 2).

And, behold, there was—that is, there had been, before the arrival of the women.

a great earthquake; for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, &c.—And this was the state of things when the women drew near. Some judicious critics think all this was transacted while the women were approaching; but the view we have given, which is the prevalent one, seems the more natural. All this august preparation—recorded by Matthew alone—bespoke the grandeur of the exit which was to follow. The angel sat upon the huge stone, to overawe, with the lightning-luster that darted from him, the Roman guard, and do honor to his rising Lord.Matthew 28:1-8 Christ’s resurrection is declared by an angel to the women.

Matthew 28:9-10 Christ himself appeareth to them.

Matthew 28:11-15 The chief priests bribe the soldiers to report that

he was stolen by the disciples.

Matthew 28:16,17 Christ appeareth to the eleven in Galilee,

Matthew 28:18-20 and sendeth them to teach and baptize all nations.

We are now come to that part of the Gospel which treats concerning the resurrection of Christ, and the converse which he had upon the earth for forty days, Acts 1:3, until the time of his ascension into heaven. Matthew and Mark are the shortest in this narration. I shall therefore, only consider what Matthew saith, and what the other evangelists speak as to the same things which he mentions, leaving out what the other evangelists have (not at all mentioned by him) to be discoursed in their proper place. We heard before that Mary Magdalene and the other Mary had prepared spices and ointments to anoint the body of Christ, but the sabbath day being at hand, they would not by that unnecessary action profane the sabbath; as Luke tells us, Luke 23:56, they rested on the sabbath, according to the commandment: The sabbath ended with them at the setting of the sun. They did not go as soon as the sabbath was ended, but after it was ended,

as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week. The first day of the week began with them as soon as the sabbath was ended, so as the first day of the week was a third part spent; therefore Mark reports the time, Mark 16:1,2, And when the sabbath was past; and says that Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James and Salome, had bought sweet spices that they might come and anoint him. And very early in the morning, the first day of the week, they came unto the sepulchre at the rising of the sun. Luke saith, Luke 24:1, that upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulchre, bringing the spices which they had prepared, and certain others with them.

John saith, John 20:1, The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulchre. As to the time, three evangelists say it was upon the first day of the week, early in the morning; about sunrising, saith Mark; while it was yet dark, saith John: these now interpret Matthew’s oqe sabbatwn, which doth not signify, in the evening of the sabbath, but in the evening of the sabbaths, the end of the week. The Jews, in honour to the sabbath, called all the days of the week sabbaths, the first of the sabbath, the second of the sabbath, &c.; so as oqe sabbatwn is well translated by our translators, In the end of the sabbath, the evening or night following the sabbath, following the seventh day, which was the sabbath. Nor is oqe to be taken here strictly for that time of the night which we call the evening, but for the whole night, which must be reckoned to continue until the sunrising of the first day of the week; and so Matthew expounds himself, adding,

as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, that is, the first artificial day, as the day is accounted from sunrising to sun setting; otherwise it was upon the first natural day of the week, which began from the sun setting before. Matthew mentions the coming of Mary Magdalene, and the other Mary, who, Mark saith, was the mother of James and Salome, to the sepulchre. John mentions only Mary Magdalene, but it is not probable she went alone, and two other evangelists say also the other Mary. Luke saith there were certain others with them: there might be divers with them, though one only be named by John, two by Matthew and Mark as being the principal persons in the company. And though Matthew only mentions their going to see the sepulchre, yet Mark telleth us that they went also to anoint his body, and Luke saith they carried the spices prepared for that end; their faith, as it seemeth, was yet but weak as to our Saviour’s resurrection.

In the end of the sabbath,.... This clause is by some joined to the last verse of the preceding chapter, but stands better here, as appears from Mark 16:1, and intends not what the Jews call the sabbath eve, for that began the sabbath; but what they call , "the goings out of the sabbath"; and as Mark says, Mark 16:1, "when the sabbath was past": that is, when the sun was set, and any stars appeared. The Vulgate Latin, Arabic, and Ethiopic versions, and Munster's Hebrew Gospel render it, "the evening of the sabbath"; and the Persic version, "the night of the sabbath"; but must mean, not the evening and night, which preceded the sabbath, and was a part of it, but what followed it, and belonged to the first day.

As it began to dawn; not the day, but the night; a way of speaking used by the Jews, who call the night, "light": thus they say (y), , "on the light, or night of the fourteenth" (of the month Nisan) "they search for leavened bread", &c. And so the word is used, in Luke 23:54, of the eve of the sabbath, or the beginning of it, as here of the going out of it;

towards the first day of the week, or "sabbaths"; so the Jews used to call the days of the week, the first day of the sabbath, the second day of the sabbath, &c. take an instance or two (z).

"The stationary men fast four days in the week, from the second day to the fifth day; and they do not fast on the sabbath eve (so they sometimes call the sixth day), because of the glory of the sabbath; nor , "on the first day of the sabbath", or week, that they may not go from rest and delight, to labour and fasting, and die.''

On which the Gemara has these words (a);

"the stationary men go into the synagogue, and sit four fastings; , "on the second of the sabbath", or "week": on the third, and on the fourth, and on the fifth.''

Came Mary Magdalene, and the other Mary, the wife of Cleophas, and mother of James and Joses, with whom also was Salome, the mother of Zebedee's children, Mark 16:1. There seems to be some difference between the evangelists about the time of the women's coming to the sepulchre. Matthew says, it was "at the end of the sabbath, when it began to dawn; towards the first day of the week". John says, that "Mary Magdalene" came "when it was yet dark", John 20:1, and yet Mark says, that they came "at the rising of the sun", Mark 16:2. Though they all agree it was early in the morning: all they say is no doubt true, and may be reconciled thus. As soon as the sabbath was ended, the women set out on their journey, and as they went, bought spices and ointment to anoint the body with: they passed through the gates of the city before they were shut, and might stay some time in the suburbs; when Mary Magdalene, eager to be at the sepulchre, set out first, whilst it was dark, and came back and reported to Peter what she had seen, and returned again by such time the other women came, which was at sunrising. From all the accounts it is clear, that he rose, as is expressly said, Mark 16:9, on the first day of the week, and which was the third from his death: on the sixth day, which was Friday, he was crucified, and buried that evening; he lay in the grave all sabbath day, or Saturday; and rose early on the first day of the week, before the women got to the sepulchre; who came thither, as it is here said,

to see the sepulchre: not merely to see it, for they had seen it before, and where, and how the body of Christ was laid in it; but to see whether they could enter into it, and anoint the body with the spices and ointments, which they had prepared and brought with them for that purpose.

(y) Misn. Pesachim, c. 1. sect. 1. Vid. Maimon. & Bartenora in ib. (z) Misn. Taanilh, c. 4. sect. 3.((a) T. Bab. Taanith, fol. 27. 2. Vid. T. Bab. Nidda, fol. 4. 2. & 11. 1. & 67. 2.

In {1} the {a} end of the sabbath, as it {b} began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre.

(1) Christ, having routed death in the tomb, rises by his own power, as the angel immediately witnesses.

(a) At the going out of the sabbath, that is, about daybreak after the Roman manner of telling time, which considers the natural day to be from the rising of the sun to the next sunrise: and not as the Hebrews, which count from evening to evening.

(b) When the morning of the first day after the sabbath began to dawn: and that first day is the same as that which we now call Sunday, or the Lord's day.

Matthew 28:1. On the various ways of viewing and interpreting the story of the resurrection, see, as regards their critical aspect, Keim, III. p. 527 ff.; and on the apologetic side, consult Steinmeyer, Apolog. Beitr. III. 1871.

ὀψὲ δὲ σαββάτων] but late on the Sabbath, means neither … after the close of the Sabbath (Olshausen, de Wette, Baumgarten-Crusius, Ewald, Bleek), nor: after the close of the week (Severus of Antioch, Euthymius Zigabenus, Grotius, Wieseler, p. 425); for ὀψέ, sero, with a defining genitive (without which it occurs nowhere else in the New Testament) always denotes the lateness of the period thus specified and still current (τὰ τελευταῖα τούτων, Euthymius Zigabenus). Comp. in general, Krüger, § xlvii. 10. 4; Kühner, II. 1, p. 292. Take the following as examples of this usage from classical authors: Xen. Hist. ii. 1. 14; Thuc. iv. 93. 1 : τῆς ἡμέρας ὀψέ; Dem. p. 541, ult.: ὀψὲ τῆς ὥρας ἐγίγνετο; Luc. Dem. enc. 14, and de morte Peregr. 21 : ὀψὲ τῆς ἡλικίας. Hence by: late on the Sabbath, we are not to suppose Saturday evening to be intended,—any such misunderstanding being precluded both by the nature of the expression made use of, an expression by no means synonymous with the usual ὀψίας γενομένης (in opposition to Keim), and by what is still further specified immediately after,—but far on in the Saturday night, after midnight, toward daybreak on Sunday, in conformity with the civil mode of reckoning, according to which the ordinary day was understood to extend from sunrise till sunrise again. Lightfoot, comparing the Rabbinical expression בפיקי שובא, aptly observes: “ὀψέ totam noctem denotat.” Comp. so early a writer as Augustine, de cons. ev. 24. Consequently the point of time mentioned here is substantially identical with that given in Luke 24:1 : τῇ μιᾷ τῶν σαββάτων ὄρθρου βαθέος, and in John 20:1 : τῇ μιᾷ τῶν σαββ. πρωῒ σκοτίας ἔτι οὔσης; while, on the other hand, Mark 16:2 represents the sun as already risen. For ὀψέ comp. Ammonius: ἑσπέρα μὲν γάρ ἐστιν ἡ μετὰ τὴν δύσιν τοῦ ἡλίου ὥρα· ὀψέ δὲ ἡ μετὰ πολὺ τῆς δύσως.

τῇ ἐπιφωσκ. εἰς μίαν σαββάτων when it was dawning toward Sunday, i.e. as the light was beginning to appear on the morning of Sunday. Understand ἡμέρα after ἐπιφωσκ.; and for ἐπιφώσκει ἡ ἡμέρα, comp. Herod, iii. 86: ἁμʼ ἡμέρῃ διαφωσκούσῃ, also Mark 9:45. The participial expression without the ἡμέρα is similar to ἡ ἐπιοῦσα, and the like (Kühner, II. 1, p. 228). Keim supposes the evening to be intended, since, according to the Jewish mode of reckoning, the day began with the rising of the stars or the lighting of lamps, so that the meaning of our passage would be as follows: “In the evening after six o’clock, just when the stars were beginning to twinkle”[39] But to say nothing of the startling discrepancy that would thus arise between Matthew and the other evangelists, we would be under the necessity, according to Luke 23:54 (see on the passage), of understanding the words immediately following as simply equivalent to: τῇ μίᾳ σαββάτων ἐπιφωσκούσῃ; comp. ΣΑΒΒΆΤΟΝ ἘΠΙΦΏΣΚΕΙ, Ev. Nicod. 12, p. 600, Thilo’s edition. Nor, if we adopt Keim’s interpretation, is it at all clear what substantive should be understood along with τῇ ἐπιφωσκ. Ewald, Apost. Zeit. p. 82, unwarrantably supplies ἑσπέρᾳ, and, like Keim, supposes the reference to be to the evening lighting of the lamps, though he is inclined to think that Matthew intended summarily to include in his statement what the women did on Saturday evening and early on Sunday, a view which finds no support whatever in the text; as for the intention to embalm the body, there is no trace of such a thing in Matthew. Lastly, to suppose that in framing his statement as to the time here in question, the author of our revised Gospel has had recourse to a combination of Mark 16:1-2 (Weiss), is to give him but little credit for literary skill; for instead of taking the trouble to form any such combination, he had only to take Mark’s two statements and place the one after the other, thus: διαγενομένου τοῦ σαββάτου, λίαν πρωῒ τῆς ΜΙᾶς ΣΑΒΒΆΤΩΝ. But so far from that, he has proceeded in entire independence of Mark.

The expression ΜΊΑ ΣΑΒΒΆΤΩΝ corresponds exactly to the Rabbinical mode of designating the days of the week: אחד בשבת, Sunday; שני בשבת, Monday; שלישי בשבת, Tuesday, and so on. See Lightfoot, p. 500. Observe that ΣΆΒΒΑΤΑ denotes, in the first instance, Sabbath, and then week; and similarly, that the ἩΜΈΡᾼ to be understood with ἘΠΟΦΩΣΚ. is to be taken in the sense of day light (John 4:4; John 11:9; Romans 8:12; 1 Thessalonians 5:5).

ἡ ἄλλη Μαρία] as in Matthew 27:56.

In John 20:1 only Mary Magdalene is mentioned, whereas in the Synoptists we have an amplified version of the tradition as regards the number of the women, Matthew mentioning two, Mark three (Salome), while Luke (Matthew 24:10) gives us to understand that, in addition to the two Marys and Joanna, whom he specially names, there were several others. In dealing with such discrepancies in the tradition we should beware of seeking to coerce the different narratives into harmony with one another, which can never be done without prejudice to their respective authors. We see an illustration of this in the supposition that Mary Magdalene came first of all to the grave, and then hastened back to the city to inform Peter of what had taken place, and that during her absence Mary the mother of James, Joanna, Salome, and the other women arrived (Olshausen, Ebrard). Comp. on John 20:1. The same thing is exemplified by the other view, that Mary Magdalene went to the grave along with the rest of the women, but that on the way back she outran the others, etc. For the various attempts to harmonize the divergent narratives, see Griesbach, Opusc. II. p. 241 ff.; Strauss, II. p. 570 ff.; Wieseler, p. 425 ff.

ΘΕΩΡῆΣΑΙ ΤῸΝ ΤΆΦΟΝ] to look at the grave; according to Mark and Luke, to anoint the body. This latter statement is the more original and more correct of the two, though Matthew could not consistently adopt it after what he had said about the sealing and watching of the grave.

[39] This idea of Keim’s about the twinkling of the stars is an importation; for the expression ἐπιφώσκει, as applied to the evening, has reference only to the ordinary domestic lighting of the lamps. See in particular, Lightfoot on Luke 23:54.

Matthew 28:1-10. The open grave (Mark 16:1-8, Luke 24:1-11).

1. as it began to dawn] At the rising of the sun, or properly, “when the sun had risen” (Mark). Both St Mark and St Luke mention that they brought spices and ointments.

Ch. Matthew 28:1-8. The Resurrection

Mark 16:1-8; Luke 24:1-12; John 20:1-18The discrepancies are slight, and may be accounted for by the agitation of the witnesses of this momentous scene. To the women named in this Gospel St Mark adds Salome; St Luke, Joanna and other women; St John names Mary Magdalene only. St Luke and St John mention the visit of Peter to the sepulchre, St John adding “that other disciple.” This Evangelist also records the appearance of Jesus to Mary Magdalene in the garden.

The order of events was probably this: First, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary, having come early to the tomb, were addressed by the Angel and saw the empty sepulchre; they hasten to inform Peter and the other disciples; Peter and John visit the tomb and depart; Mary Magdalene, left alone, beholds her Lord, whom at first she does not recognise; soon afterwards the Lord appears a second time to Mary Magdalene, now in the company of other women.

Matthew 28:1. Ὀψὲ, after) i.e. after the Sabbath; cf. Mark 16:1. E. Schmidius compares with this expression that of Plutarch, ὀψὲ τῶν βασιλέως χρόνων, after the times of the king; and that of Philostrahis, ὀψὲ τῶν Τρωϊκῶν, after the Trojan war.[1220] Now with the new week very different matters arise.—σαββάτωνσαββάτων,[1221] genitive plural of σάββατον, the Sabbath) The Vulgate has Sabbati—Sabbati, genitive singular, in both places, and it does not stand alone.—σαββάτονσαββάτων, the first in the genitive singular, the second genitive plural, is the middle reading between these two.[1222]—Τῇ [sc. ἩΜΈΡᾼ] ἘΠΙΦΩΣΚΟΎΣῌ, as it began to dawn) When the period of death had elapsed, our Lord rose as quickly as possible.—εἰς μίαν [sc. ἩΜΈΡΑΝ] on the first day, i.e. the whole day, the first of the week. The first day of the week had already begun on the preceding evening; now the day, as opposed to the night, was dawning on that first day. The first remarkable mention of the Lord’s day is combined with the resurrection of our Lord. It is generally called ἡ μία (the first) with the article: see Mark 16:2; Luke 24:1; John 20:1; John 20:19; Acts 20:7, and on the other hand 1 Corinthians 16:2.[1223]—ΣΑΒΒΆΤΩΝ, of the days of the week) ἦλθε, κ.τ.λ., came, etc.) Such offices were performed by those who were not connected by the closest relationship; so that it is not wonderful that our Lord’s mother was not there with them.[1224]

[1220] We may translate the Greek words thus:—“On that day which commences from the evening after the Sabbath, and on the following morning dawns upon the first day of the week.” This was Sunday, very early in the morning.—Harm., p. 584, etc.

[1221] This too is the reading of E. M.—(I. B.)

[1222] In the original the passage runs thus:—“σαββάτωνσαββάτων, sabbati—sabbati) habet Lat. nec solus. σαββάτουσαββάτων, lectio media.

[1223] In the last instance the omission of the article may be accounted for by the presence of the preposition κατὰ, which, as is frequently the case in similar instances, renders μίαν σαββάτων anarthrous. See Middleton on the article, who observes also, that if two nouns be in regimen, and if one be anarthrous, the other will be so too; so that σαββάτων, being without the article, causes μίαν to drop the article, which it otherwise should have.—(I. B.)

[1224] It seems to be desirable to give the reader here a succinct history of this first Lord’s day, framed from a comparison of the Evangelists as instituted by Bengel, in such a way, however, as that the arguments are left in their own places to be investigated by the reader. The summary of events which the Harm. Ev., p. 584. etc, exhibits, amounts to this:—

The preparations for anointing Jesus, which had been begun before the Sabbath, having been continued and completed by the women after the end of the Sabbath, Mary Magdalene came to the sepulchre much sooner than the rest of the women; (for too long a space of time intervenes between the time preceding day-break [John 20:1] and the rising of the sun [Mark 16:2] to admit of our supposing that all the women at one time left home before day, and only reached the tomb at sunrise. Meanwhile the angel sent down from heaven rolled away the stone from the door of the sepulchre, whilst an earthquake accompanied his action, very much to the terror of the soldiers on watch. Mary Magdalene is the first of all who perceived the stone rolled away, and without having entered the sepulchre, she goes to tell tidings of the fact to Peter and John. Whilst these things are being carried on, the rest of the women, having entered the sepulchre, are thrown into a state of anxiety by not discovering the body of the Lord, and upon receiving the angel’s announcement concerning the resurrection, they depart quickly [Matthew 28:8]. Then Peter and John, coming to the sepulchre. and having seen the state of things there, believe that the body of the Lord has been carried away, and return home. But Mary, having now taken her stand at the sepulchre [John 20:11]; (for she had followed the Apostles hither anew after her first visit to it), gives vent to her tears, and after having beheld the two angels, to whom she scarcely pays attention, she sees Jesus Himself, who presently after appears to the rest of the women also, as they were preparing to carry on the tidings of the angels to the disciples also. (Whilst these were going away, the soldiers in watch of the sepulchre, having brought to the priests tidings of what had happened, are bribed with money.) By this time Mary, attended by the rest of the women, has come to the disciples; but not even on the part of Peter does she find faith in the good tidings which she announces. Our Lord, meantime, appears to Cleophas and his companion (and elsewhere to Peter also). But not even to these announcements do the disciples give faith, before that, upon the intervention of the apparition, which had, in addition, been vouchsafed to Simon, the reports were confirmed by reports. In fine, on that very evening, when the disciples were congregated together, and were conversing with one another on these subjects, the risen Lord presents Himself to their view.—E. B.

In his own Greek New Testament (4 to 1734) Bengel has σαββάτωνσαββάτων, and does not indicate the existence of any various reading. In his App. Crit., however, he writes in loc.:—“σαββάτων utrumque) sabbathi habet Lat. (passim) et alii.—(I. B.)

Besides Vulg. sabbati, sabbati is read by abc. LΔ and Syr. read σαββάτῳ. But ABD Orig. 1,440c read σαββάτωνσαββάτων with Rec. Text.—ED.

Verses 1-10. - Jesus rises from the dead, and appears to the holy women. (Mark 16:1-8; Luke 24:1-12; John 20:1-10.) It is to be noted that there are great and important variations in the four (or, with St. Paul's, 1 Corinthians 15, the five) accounts of the events of the Resurrection, which have given welcome occasion to the sceptic to cast doubts upon the whole transaction. The divergences in the narratives are plainly to be ascribed to the facts that the writers did not depend upon one another, nor draw their accounts from one source; that each gives only an incomplete history, introducing those details with which he was familiar, or which it suited his plan to recount. On all main points the agreement is perfect, and every difference could be easily reconciled, if we knew the whole of the circumstances and the exact sequence of each word and act during this momentous period. Attempts at harmonizing the various accounts have been made with more or less success by writers from St. Augustine to the present time; but as they vary in many particulars, and have no authoritative basis, dependence cannot be placed upon them. The narrative in St. Matthew is brief and imperfect, and we shall chiefly confine our remarks to the exposition of the actual text before us, without importing much matter from the other evangelists. Verse 1. - In the end of the sabbath; ὀψὲ σαββάτων: late on the sabbath; Vulgate, vespere sabbati. The expression is obscure. In the parallel passage of St. Mark we read, "When the sabbath was past." We must take it that St. Matthew is thinking of the sabbath as extending, not from evening to evening, but till the following morning. "So that it is not the accurate Jewish division of time, according to which the sabbath ended at six on Saturday evening, but the ordinary civil idea of a day, which extended from sunrise to sunrise (or at least adds the night to the preceding day)" (Lange). We have, then, now arrived at the commencement of the first Christian Easter Day. As it began to dawn toward the first day of the week; εἰς μίαν σαββάτων: in prima sabbati (Vulgate); literally, unto one day of sabbath; i.e. one day after the sabbath, the Jews reckoning their days in sequence from the sabbath, and Christians at first carrying on the same practice, as we see in Acts 20:7; 1 Corinthians 16:2. Later Christians named the days of the week in sequence from the Sunday, which was the first day, Monday being the second day, feria secunda, and so on. Came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary (see on Matthew 27:61) to see the sepulchre. Love cannot abandon its object, living or dead. There were probably other women with these two, or perhaps there were two separate bands of women who in this early morning visited the sepulchre. Among these Mary Magdalene stands prominently forward, first in love and first in care. She and the rest evidently knew nothing of the sealing of the stone or the posting of the guards. St. Matthew's expression, "to see (θεωρῆσαι, "to gaze upon," "contemplate") the sepulchre," conveys only a partial notice of the object of their visit. They came not only to take a view of the tomb, but also to embalm the Lord's body, for which necessary preparations had been made, the approach of the sabbath on the evening of the Crucifixion having cut short the arrangements. We know from St. Mark that they were perplexed about the difficulty of removing the stone, and St. Matthew may be referring to a preliminary inspection made in regard of this impediment. Our Gospel omits mention of the intention of embalming the corpse, as the Resurrection rendered it impracticable; and, indeed, the Lord's body had already been anointed for his burial by Mary of Bethany. Matthew 28:1
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