The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


The gift of Shabbat

From the mourning after crucifixion comes the astonishment of resurrection

No cock crowed and no birds chirped, only the scent of the new day. The women made their way to the tomb, wondering aloud who would roll the stone away so they could honor the body of their beloved with the spices and ointment they had prepared. Their steps quickened as their hearts swelled up with tenderness for the one who had loved them unreservedly.

But when they reached the tomb, the stone was rolled away and it was empty. Fear fraught their minds. Tears welled up in their eyes—and through the tears they saw what they couldn’t conceive: He was alive!

If apostles are those who are witnesses to Jesus’ life, death and resurrection, these women were the first apostles. This account is seen in all four Gospels, with few variations.

All speak of women standing at the foot of the cross, watching the body being laid in the tomb, and being the first to witness the emptied tomb and presence of the Resurrected One.

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