Why is John Different?


#1

In Matthew, Mark, and Luke three women go to Jesus's tomb, where they find the tomb empty and angels appear that tell them Christ is risen. In John, Mary Magdalene goes to the tomb alone, finds it empty, tells Peter and John, and then returns to the tomb, where Jesus appears to her. Whey are these two accounts so different.


#2

[quote="BrethrenBoy, post:1, topic:321026"]
In Matthew, Mark, and Luke three women go to Jesus's tomb, where they find the tomb empty and angels appear that tell them Christ is risen. In John, Mary Magdalene goes to the tomb alone, finds it empty, tells Peter and John, and then returns to the tomb, where Jesus appears to her. Whey are these two accounts so different.

[/quote]

John's gospel was written much later than the other three...John wrote it to supplement the other three, not contradict them.

The three women may have gone ahead of Mary Magdalene....not all at the same time.


#3

There's no reason to think that Mary Magdalene was alone in the account of John. One such clue lies in her telling Peter and John, "We cannot tell where they have taken him." [John 19:2b]
The Gospels each have a different focus. While one might skim over an event, another might expand upon that event. {e..g, Mark mentions that Jesus appeared to two disciples going out to the country. They went to the apostles, but they * did not believe them that it was Jesus. There isn't much detail. Luke, on the other hand, greatly details Jesus' appearance to the two disciples. He gives us almost the whole account of his visit. Matthew and John entirely skip over that part.}

Or, one Gospel might mention a lot of people, while another only mentions one or two of them {e.g., the Resurrection narratives}. The focus differs, but it doesn't mean the other people weren't there.*


#4

[quote="BrethrenBoy, post:1, topic:321026"]
In Matthew, Mark, and Luke three women go to Jesus's tomb, where they find the tomb empty and angels appear that tell them Christ is risen. In John, Mary Magdalene goes to the tomb alone, finds it empty, tells Peter and John, and then returns to the tomb, where Jesus appears to her. Whey are these two accounts so different.

[/quote]

John's Gospel only mentions Mary Magdalene by name, but it does not specifically say she was alone. You can say somebody did something or went somewhere, but to place a special emphasis on that person, you could only mention their name, but not who they were with.

We see elsewhere in the Gospels. for example, where it says Jesus did this or that, or went here or there. It only mentions him, but we know that he was not alone, as he traveled in the company of (at least) the 12 Apostles.

We could also extend this to daily life, as when I say I went to Mass last night for Easter Vigil. That is a true statement, but it's also true that my family was there as well.


#5

=BrethrenBoy;10560437]In Matthew, Mark, and Luke three women go to Jesus's tomb, where they find the tomb empty and angels appear that tell them Christ is risen. In John, Mary Magdalene goes to the tomb alone, finds it empty, tells Peter and John, and then returns to the tomb, where Jesus appears to her. Whey are these two accounts so different.

No:) Same account

But from an EYE Witness this time...

John Himself is the Apostle who outran Peter.

RE-read it and you'll find this reference twice.

John wishes to make sure we all understand its truth because he personally saw and testifies to this Truth:thumbsup:


#6

#7

What specifically is bothering you that doesn't "mesh?" Is it the number of women, is it the angels, is it the Apostles? Clearly the stories have a lot in common, but what differences are bothering you? People have tried to help you here but evidently it's not helping answer your questions so perhaps if we zero in on what is bothering you we can be of help?

As an aside, this is GOOD that you are asking questions! God's word and God's church contain the truth and so it is good that you are seeking! God bless you.


#8

Thank you!:slight_smile: I can’t quite work out how the angels could tell the three women Christ has risen when they first arrive at the tomb, but them have Mary Magdalene run back to tell Peter and John his body has been taken. Also, why didn’t the other two women see Jesus.


#9

[quote="BrethrenBoy, post:6, topic:321026"]
This makes sense, but I can't make the different accounts mesh together in my mind. :shrug: Can anyone tell me how they can?

[/quote]

Hmmm...try this:

There is an event....and there are different areas to view it.

On one side...you can only see two....on the opposite side, you can see three, in between the two sides....you can see one coming but not the others....so you assume she was the only one...you cannot see the angel on one side, the other side, the angel is visible...

Hope this makes sense.


#10

[quote="BrethrenBoy, post:8, topic:321026"]
Thank you!:) I can't quite work out how the angels could tell the three women Christ has risen when they first arrive at the tomb, but them have Mary Magdalene run back to tell Peter and John his body has been taken. Also, why didn't the other two women see Jesus.

[/quote]

They are trying to recall an event...in their excitement...and forgot the minute details....:shrug:


#11

[quote="Monicad, post:7, topic:321026"]
What specifically is bothering you that doesn't "mesh?" Is it the number of women, is it the angels, is it the Apostles? Clearly the stories have a lot in common, but what differences are bothering you? People have tried to help you here but evidently it's not helping answer your questions so perhaps if we zero in on what is bothering you we can be of help?

As an aside, this is GOOD that you are asking questions! God's word and God's church contain the truth and so it is good that you are seeking! God bless you.

[/quote]

The differences actually make the accounts more plausible.


#12

[quote="BrethrenBoy, post:6, topic:321026"]
This makes sense, but I can't make the different accounts mesh together in my mind. :shrug: Can anyone tell me how they can?

[/quote]

Remember that John was the only eye-witness. The others were reporters who had to depend on what others told him.


#13

=BrethrenBoy;10571473]Thank you!:) I can't quite work out how the angels could tell the three women Christ has risen when they first arrive at the tomb, but them have Mary Magdalene run back to tell Peter and John his body has been taken. Also, why didn't the other two women see Jesus.

Actually they did.

He appeared to Peter than the others.:)


#14

[quote="BrethrenBoy, post:1, topic:321026"]
In Matthew, Mark, and Luke three women go to Jesus's tomb, where they find the tomb empty and angels appear that tell them Christ is risen. In John, Mary Magdalene goes to the tomb alone, finds it empty, tells Peter and John, and then returns to the tomb, where Jesus appears to her. Whey are these two accounts so different.

[/quote]

The Synoptic Gospels mostly focus on the facticity of the Resurrection: look, it happened, and these women witnessed the empty tomb. But John is going a bit deeper, and trying to unpack what the theological significance of the empty tomb is. I think the reason he focuses only on Mary Magdalene rather than the three women is because he wants to bring out the Garden of Eden symbolism (hence, one man - Jesus - one woman, Mary).


#15

[quote="BrethrenBoy, post:8, topic:321026"]
Also, why didn't the other two women see Jesus.

[/quote]

None of the accounts say that the other women didn't see Jesus. It appears, however, the exchange between Mary and Jesus is emphasized. Remember, these are Gospel accounts we're talking about, not a blow-by-blow modern style narrative account. As Dei Verbum, the Vatican II document on Sacred Scripture, says:

The sacred authors wrote the four Gospels, selecting some things from the many which had been handed on by word of mouth or in writing, reducing some of them to a synthesis, explaining some things in view of the situation of their churches and preserving the form of proclamation but always in such fashion that they told us the honest truth about Jesus (DV 19)


#16

[quote="BrethrenBoy, post:6, topic:321026"]
This makes sense, but I can't make the different accounts mesh together in my mind. :shrug: Can anyone tell me how they can?

[/quote]

The historical facts are important but the Bible is not a history book, nor is it a record of facts. Scripture was given to us by God for exactly one reason....

**Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation*
DEI VERBUM
November 18, 1965

...since everything asserted by the inspired authors or sacred writers must be held to be asserted by the Holy Spirit, it follows that the books of Scripture must be acknowledged as teaching solidly, faithfully and without error that truth which God wanted put into sacred writings for the sake of salvation.*

Scripture is useful for many things, but God gave is his written word so that we can be saved, not so that we can know history or science. It should not cause a crisis of faith when a fact or a date doesn't line up or when there is an apparent contradiction.

Always ask, "What is it that God wants me to know in this verse/passage/chapter/book so that I can be saved?" Always ask what is God trying to say that will help us get to Heaven and spend eternity with Him.

That's the point of scripture, to help us get to Heaven. Everything else is interesting, and may be important, but it secondary to the real purpose of scripture which was given to us for the sake of salvation.

-Tim-


#17

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