This week we will look at how the writers of the Gospels of Mark and Matthew deal with what happened immediately following the Resurrection. Mark and Matthew recorded different actions that followed the same event — the Resurrection. Read MARK 16:6-14 and MATTHEW 28:5-15 carefully as your prepare to answer the following questions:
1. In Mark 16:6, the angel told the women “Don’t be alarmed,” and called Jesus a Nazarene. Why do you think he told them not to be alarmed? Why did he call Jesus a Nazarene?
2. In Verse 7 the angel said “But go, tell his disciples and Peter.” Why do you think Peter was the only disciple whose name was called by the angel?
3. Verse 8 says the women were trembling and bewildered. As faithful followers of Jesus, why do you think the women trembled and were so bewildered?
4. Where in Scripture, other than Mark 9, is Mary Magdalene identified as having had seven demons?
5. Verse 14 says Jesus rebuked the Eleven for “their lack of faith and stubborn refusal to believe those who had seen him after he had risen.” Who do think the Eleven refused to believe and why did they refuse to believe them?
6. In Matthew 28:5-7 the person who spoke to the women is called an angel. In Mark 16:6 he is called a young man. Do you think this is the same person in both Gospels?
7. In Verse 8 the women were “afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his disciples.” But in Mark 16:8, it says the women did not say a word to anyone. Are these the same women? Why this difference between the two Gospels?
8. Verse 9 has an encounter between Jesus and the women that is not in Mark. Why do you think this encounter is so important to what happens next in Matthew?
9. Verse 11 says some of the soldiers who were guarding Jesus’ body went to the chief priests to report what happened. Why did the guards go to Jewish leaders and not their own Roman commanders?
10. Why do you think the Jewish priests and elders came up with their “plan” to create a lie and paid “a large sum of money” to soldiers?
11. Who was the governor that the Jewish leaders said they would satisfy to keep the soldiers out of trouble?
12. The last sentence in Verse 15 says, “And this story has been widely circulated among the Jews to this very day.” What do you think it means by this “very day”?