JOHN 20
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9 For as yet they knew not the scripture, that he must rise again from the dead.

At long last, in the fulness of times, the grave was to be conquered. A path never before opened up was to be trod -- a path of hope right through the hitherto hopeless valley of the shadow of death, and out the other side.

No man had passed this way before.

True, there had been typical raisings from the dead before in manifestation and shadow of what was to come, but never a resurrection that shattered the power of the grave and cast off its shackles forever. Never man had passed this way before -- no man had ever lain in this tomb -- this glorious gateway from death to life.

Bro Growcott - Woman, Why Weepest Thou


16 Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master.

Mary was the first to whom he spoke in the hour of Resurrection and Life -- the first name he uttered beyond the grave.

How little we know of Mary! Her name occurs twelve times -- eleven times in connection with the events of the crucifixion and only once anywhere else. That one place is Luke 8:2, where we are told she was among those who went about with Jesus on his journeys, and ministered to him. We are told there, too, that Jesus had cast seven demons out of Mary -- that is, he had cured her of some terrible and overwhelming infirmity.

Bro Growcott - Woman, Why Weepest Thou



17 Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.

In the evening of that same day, the Lord suffered himself to be freely handled by the disciples. Consequently, there must have been a removal of the cause which led him to prevent Mary from touching him. He said to Mary he had not ascended to the Father. He must have made this ascent in the interim: but in what did the ascent consist?

It cannot have been ascent in space, because in less than half-an-hour, it had been performed, for he was embraced by the feet within that time by the group of women to whom the angels had appeared during Mary's absence. What other ascent could he have made? The Father is everywhere present. 

To rise from the low nature of the earthy to the high nature of the divine, is to ascend to the Father.

This ascent he must have performed after seeing Mary. The need for it will appear if we realise that he had emerged from the tomb a natural man, or body of life, according to the nature of Abraham and David. This had to be "changed in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye," from the natural to the spiritual, as in the case of his brethren, who are to be developed after the pattern of his example. Until this change had taken place, he was in the defilement which contact with death imparted to everything for those under the law of Moses. Mary was under this law; and therefore until the Lord was cleansed by change, there was a reason why she should not touch him.

Nazareth Revisited


After resurrection is ascension; but not necessarily instantaneously after. This is evident from the example given in the case of the Lord Jesus. He first came out of the sepulchre; and then, after a certain interval, "ascended to the Father;" an ascent which is not to be confounded with his assumption from the Mount of Olives, forty-three days after his crucifixion (John xx. 17; Acts i. 11).

He ascended to the Father before he was "taken up." The ascent was a necessary preparation for the taking up of the resurrected body; for a body such as he had, when he forbid Mary to touch him, was unfit for translation through the higher regions of our atmosphere, and the airless ethereal beyond. It was necessary that he should be "in spirit" and so become spirit, that he might be with the Father.

Eureka 4.1.3.


19 Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you.

A Special and private interview

On the first day of the creation-week God said, "Let there be light, and there was light;" so on the first day of the week "THE TRUE LIGHT" came forth from the darkness of the tomb "like dew from the womb of the morning."

This event constituted the day after the sabbath, or eighth day, the day of the Lord's resurrection; and therefore styled by His disciples "THE LORD'S DAY."

It is a day to be much remembered by them, because it assures them of their justification "in Him," of their own resurrection to life, and of the certainty of His ruling or "judging the world in righteousness" as Yahweh's king, when they also shall reign with Him as kings and priests of God (Rom. 4:25; 8:11; 1 Cor. 15:14-20; Acts 17:31; Rev. 5:9-10).

This day is also notable on account of the special interviews which occurred between Jesus and His disciples after His resurrection (John 20:19-26). He ascended to heaven on this day, even the forty-third from His crucifixion; and seven days after, that is the fiftieth, being that Lord's day styled "the day of Pentecost," the gift of the Holy Spirit was poured out upon the apostles, and the gospel of the kingdom preached for the first time in His name.

Elpis Israel 2.1.


22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the holy spirit:

When the breath of a man from the tomb is holy spirit, that man must have been corporeally quickened, or have become spirit...

Now some time in the interval between the dawn and the evening of the resurrection day, the cause for the interdict, " Touch me not," must have been removed ; in other words, the ascent from the lower nature, begotten to incipient life in the tomb, to the Father, " who is Spirit " (John iv. 24), must then have taken place.

This transition from the one nature to the other, when the fulness of the time is come, is " in the twinkling of an eye " : which instantaneous operation of Almighty power constitutes the putting on of incorruptibility and deathlessness; and confers upon the quickened being a life independent of the natural laws, by which " death is swallowed up in victory."

Anastasis



27 Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing.

What stronger proof can we need of the substantial and tangible nature of the Spiritual body? It is the animal body purified, not evaporated into gas, or vapour.

It is a bloodless body; for in the case of Jesus He had poured out His blood upon the cross. The life of the animal body is in the blood; but not so that of the Spiritual body: the life of this resides in that mighty power which suspends "the earth upon nothing," and is diffused through the immensity of space.

Elpis Israel 2.1