To whom did Christ appear first, the women or His disciples? MATTHEW 28:9

MATTHEW 28:9—To whom did Christ appear first, the women or His disciples?

PROBLEM: Both Matthew and Mark list women as the first ones to see the resurrected Christ. Mark says, “He appeared first to Mary Magdalene” (16:9). But Paul lists Peter (Cephas) as the first one to see Christ after His resurrection (1 Cor. 15:5).

SOLUTION: Jesus appeared first to Mary Magdalene, then to the other women, and then to Peter. The order of the twelve appearances of Christ goes as follows:

THE ORDER OF THE TWELVE APPEARANCES OF CHRIST

PERSON(S)

SAW

HEARD

TOUCHED

OTHER EVIDENCE

1.

Mary
(John 20:10–18)

X

X

X

Empty tomb

2.

Mary & Women
(Matt. 28:1–10)

X

X

X

Empty tomb

3.

Peter
(1 Cor. 15:5)

X

X*

Empty tomb, Clothes

4.

Two Disciples
(Luke 24:13–35)

X

X

Ate with Him

5.

Ten Apostles
(Luke 24:36–49; John 20:19–23)

X

X

X**

Saw wounds, Ate food

6.

Eleven Apostles
(John 20:24–31)

X

X

X**

Saw wounds

7.

Seven Apostles
(John 21)

X

X

Ate food

8.

All Apostles
(Matt. 28:16–20; Mark 16:14–18)

X

X

9.

500 Brethren
(1 Cor. 15:6)

X

X*

10.

James
(1 Cor. 15:7)

X

X*

11.

All Apostles
(Acts 1:4–8)

X

X

Ate with Him

12.

Paul
(Acts 9:1–9; 1 Cor. 15:8)

X

X

Paul was not giving a complete list, but only the important one for his purpose. Since only men’s testimony was considered legal or official in the 1st century, it is understandable that the apostle would not list the women in his defense of the resurrection here.

[1]

 

* Implied

** Offered Himself to be touched

** Offered Himself to be touched

* Implied

* Implied

[1]Geisler, N. L., & Howe, T. A. (1992). When critics ask : A popular handbook on Bible difficulties (365). Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books.

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