Note: This series is written as a first-person narrative to present Jesus in the context he walked in with the unknown disciple that narrates introducing my thoughts and sparking more ideas with his questions. Enjoy.
It’s been three days since Jesus was crucified. With the Sabbath yesterday, the women couldn’t put the spices on his body since the shops were closed. As dawn started cracking the sky with light, I watched as Jesus’ mother, Salome, Mary Magdalene, Joanna, and a couple of others left for the tomb.
Maybe an hour later they came running back, shouting over each other. John got them to calm down and tell us what happened.
“Where’s Mary Magdalene?”
“Still there,” Jesus’ mom answered.
Joanna started talking.
“We arrived at the tomb to find the stone rolled away, and the guards gone. Mary looked inside, and his grave clothes were in a pile on the slab.”
“And there was a flash of light, and suddenly two men were standing there,” Salome continued. “We fell to the ground and hid our faces. I was so scared.”
Jesus’ mother said, “One of them spoke, saying, “Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: ‘The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.'”
“Are you sure?” I asked.
“This sounds crazy,” Thomas remarked.
We turned away, but Peter and John raced out the door.
Later, they returned with Mary.
“He’s not there,” Peter said. “I was in the tomb. No sign of him.”
“Mary says she saw him. Tell them,” John said.
“I was standing outside the tomb, crying. I looked into the tomb and saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus’ body had been, one at the head and the other at the foot.
They asked me, “Woman, why are you crying?”
“They have taken my Lord away,” I said, “and I don’t know where they have put him.” I turned around and saw a man standing there, but I did not realize that it was Jesus.
He asked me, “Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?”
I thought he was the gardener, so I said, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.”
He said to me, “Mary.”
I realized who it was and cried out, “Rabboni!” I tried to grab him, but Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.‘”
I started running with the news: “I have seen the Lord!” I found Peter and John first.
“Could he truly be alive?”
“I don’t see how.”
“I need to clear my head,” Thomas said. “I’m taking a walk.”
Cleopas and a few others left to go home.
Later that day, after we got the news that Judas committed suicide in a field, there was a knock at the door. It was Cleopas and his friend. As soon as we opened it, they ran in.
“We saw Jesus!”
“What!?” Matthew said.
“We were going to Emmaus, talking about everything that happened. This man joined us.”
He asked us, “What are you discussing together as you walk along?“
We stopped, and I asked, “Are you the only one visiting Jerusalem who does not know the things that have happened there in these days?”
“What things?” he asked.
“About Jesus of Nazareth,” we replied. “He was a prophet, powerful in word and deed before God and all the people. The chief priests and our rulers handed him over to be sentenced to death, and they crucified him; but we had hoped that he was the one who was going to redeem Israel. And what is more, it is the third day since all this took place. In addition, some of our women amazed us. They went to the tomb early this morning but didn’t find his body. They came and told us that they had seen a vision of angels, who said he was alive. Then some of our companions went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but they did not see Jesus.”
The man said to us, “How foolish you are, and how slow to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Did not the Messiah have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?”
Beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to us what was said in all the Scriptures concerning the Messiah. It felt like my heart was on fire while listening to him.
We got to Emmaus, and he was going to continue on, but we persuaded him to stay at my home. I prepared some food, and when he was at the table with us, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to us.
Then we realized it was Jesus. I think I even saw the nail hole in his wrist. As soon as we realized it, he disappeared.
We had to come back.”
“Is he going to come here? Where will he go next?” I asked. No one knew.