And they departed quickly from the sepulcher with fear and great joy; and did run to bring his disciples word.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)They departed quickly.—It is natural that independent narratives, given long years afterwards, of what had passed in the agitation of “fear and great joy “should present seeming, or even real, discrepancies as well as coincidences. The discrepancies, such as they are, at any rate, show that the narratives were independent. The best solution of the questions presented by a comparison of the Gospel narrative at this stage is that Mary Magdalene ran eagerly to tell Peter and John, leaving the other Mary and Joanna (Luke 24:10), and then followed in the rear of the two disciples (John 20:2). Then when they had left, the Lord showed Himself first to her (John 20:14), and then to the others (Matthew 28:9), whom she had by that time joined, and then they all hastened together to tell the rest of the disciples.
With fear and great joy - Fear because of:
1. the wonderful scenes which they had witnessed the stone rolled away, and the presence of an angel;
2. a confused state of mind, apprehensive, perhaps, that it might not, after all, be true.
The news was too good to be credited at once, yet they had sufficient faith in it to fill them with great and unexpected joy. Perhaps no language could better express the state of their minds - the mingled awe and rejoicing - than that which is used here.
from the sepulchre with fear and great joy—How natural this combination of feelings! See on a similar statement of Mr 16:11.
and did run to bring his disciples word—"Neither said they anything to any man [by the way]; for they were afraid" (Mr 16:8).
Appearance to the Women (Mt 28:9, 10).
This appearance is recorded only by Matthew.Mark 16:5-8, And entering into the sepulchre, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, clothed in a long white garment; and they were affrighted. And he saith unto them, Be not affrighted: Ye seek Jesus of Nazareth, which was crucified: he is risen; he is not here: behold the place where they laid him. But go your way, tell his disciples and Peter that he goeth before you into Galilee: there shall ye see him, as he said unto you. And they went out quickly, and fled from the sepulchre; for they trembled and were amazed: neither said they any thing to any man, for they were afraid.
Luke saith, Luke 24:3-11, And they entered in, and found not the body of the Lord Jesus. And it came to pass, as they were much perplexed thereabout, behold, two men stood by them in shining garments: and as they were afraid, and bowed down their faces to the earth, they said unto them, Why seek ye the living among the dead? He is not here, but is risen: remember how he spake unto you when he was yet in Galilee, saying, The Son of man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again. And they remembered his words, and returned from the sepulchre, and told all these things unto the eleven, and to all the rest. It was Mary Magdalene, and Joanna, and Mary the mother of James, and other women that were with them, which told these things unto the apostles. And their words seemed to them as idle tales, and they believed them not.
John saith, of Mary Magdalene only, John 20:2, Then she runneth, and cometh to Simon Peter, and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and saith unto them, They have taken away the Lord out of the sepulchre, and we know not where they have laid him.
Matthew in this relation omits many things more distinctly related by the other evangelists. When the women came to the sepulchre, they first entered in; so saith Mark and Luke. It was within that they saw the angel, habited as it were in a long white, shining garment. They were affrighted, (as we naturally are upon apparitions), they bowed down their faces to the earth. The angel bids them not to fear, he knew that they sought Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified;
Why seek ye the living among the dead? he is not here, but is risen; showeth to them the place where his body was laid; minds them of Christ’s words to them in Galilee, Matthew 18:23; bids them go tell his disciples (Mark adds, and Peter) that he was going before them into Galilee, and that there they should see him, as he had said unto them, Matthew 26:32 Mark 14:28.
They departed quickly from the sepulchre (as Matthew saith) with fear and great joy; Mark saith, trembling and amazed. John doth not say, unbelieving, but he saith it in effect, for he saith, that they said to Simon Peter, They have taken away the Lord out of the sepulchre, and we know not where they have laid him. The cause of their fear and amazement was doubtless the apparition of the angel. The cause of their sudden joy was the news that he was risen, told them by the angel. It appeareth that their joy was but a sudden flash of passion, not rising from the certainty of their souls as to the truth of what they heard, because they said to the disciples, that they did not believe it, but upon second thoughts concluded that somebody had removed our Saviour’s body: neither did the apostles themselves believe it, as appeareth by Luke; he saith they looked upon it as an idle tale.
John saith expressly, John 20:9, As yet they knew not the scripture, that he must rise again from the dead: they knew it notionally, but they did not give a firm and a fixed assent to it, they did not believe it. It was not, it seemeth, in the power of their wills to believe this article of Christ’s resurrection; for as they had a Divine revelation of the thing from Christ himself, so we cannot but think they had mind and good will enough to believe it. But God had not given them the power of faith as to this point. Mark 16:8, which shows, that they went into the sepulchre upon the invitation of the angel, and saw the place where the Lord lay; and here it was the angel gave them their instructions, and errand to the disciples; which as soon as they received, they quitted the sepulchre in all haste, partly in obedience to the angel's orders, and partly through surprise and fear; for Mark says, "they fled from the sepulchre", Mark 16:8, as persons terrified and affrighted: and it is added here,
with fear and great joy: a mixture of both these; with fear and dread, because of the vision they had seen, and with joy at the news of Christ's resurrection; and yet in this their faith might not be so confirmed, as to have no doubt about it: they might fear the body was taken away, and removed to some other place, and that this they had seen might be a deception and a delusion. However, between both joy and fear, they set out,
and did run to bring his disciples word; as Mary Magdalene ran to Peter, John 20:2, nor is running unusual for women, or unbecoming them on certain occasions; see Genesis 24:20. Their fright, as well as their joy, and their regard to the angel's order, might cause them to run, and make the quicker dispatch.And they departed quickly from the sepulchre with fear and great joy; and did run to bring his disciples word.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)Matthew 28:8 Μετὰ φόβου, ἐφʼ οἷς εἶδον παραδόξοις· μετὰ χαρᾶς δὲ, ἐφʼ οἷς ἤκουσαν εὐαγγελίοις, Euthymius Zigabenus.
μεγάλης] applying to both substantives. For similar instances of the mingling of fear with joy (Virg. Aen. i. 514, xi. 807, al.), consult Wetstein; Köster in the Stud. u. Krit. 1862, p. 351.Matthew 28:8-10. Appearance of Jesus to the women on the way to deliver their message.Matthew 28:8. Φόβου καὶ χαρᾶς μεγάλης, with fear and great joy) These emotions can coexist in spiritual matters.Verse 8. - They departed (ἐξελθοῦσαι, better ἀπελθοῦσαι) quickly from the sepulchre. At the angel's invitation (ver. 6), they, or some of them, had entered into the inner chamber of the tomb (Luke 24:3), and now came hurrying out. With fear and great joy. With a mixture of emotions - fear at the sight of the heavenly visitant, the supernatural presence, and joy at the assurance that their beloved Master had risen again, having burst the bonds of death. Did run. They did as they were bidden with all possible speed, acting as heralds of good tidings to the disconsolate disciples.
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