Ver. 9,10. Matthew repeateth this very shortly. Mark saith, Mar_16:9-11, Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils. And she went and told them that had been with him, as they mourned and wept. And they, when they had heard that he was alive, and had been seen of her, believed not.
Luke saith, Luk_24:12, Then (that is, when Mary Magdalene and the other Mary had come and told the disciples what they had seen and heard, though at first they gave no credit to it) arose Peter, and ran unto the sepulchre, and stooping down, he beheld the linen clothes laid by themselves, and departed, wondering in himself at that which was come to pass.
John relates this more distinctly, in Joh_20:3-18: Peter therefore went forth, and that other disciple, ( whom Jesus loved, as Mat_28:2, and that was John himself, who wrote that Gospel, Joh_13:23), and came to the sepulchre. So they ran both together: and the other disciple did outrun Peter, and came first to the sepulchre. And he stooping down, and looking in, saw the linen clothes lying; yet went he not in. Then cometh Simon Peter following him, and went into the sepulchre, and seeth the linen clothes lie, and the napkin, that was about his head, not lying with the linen clothes, but wrapped together in a place by itself. Then went in also that other disciple, which came first to the sepulchre, and he saw, and believed. For as yet they knew not the scripture, that he must rise again from the dead. Then the disciples went away again unto their own home. But Mary stood without at the sepulchre weeping: and as she wept, she stooped down, and looked into the sepulchre, and seeth two angels in white sitting, the one at the head, and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain. And they say unto her, woman, why weepest thou? She saith unto them, Because they have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him. And when she had thus said, she turned herself back, and saw Jesus standing, and knew not that it was Jesus. Jesus saith unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou? She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away. Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master. 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. Mary Magdalene came and told the disciples that she had seen the Lord, and that he had spoken these things unto her. What there is particularly to be noted upon the several particulars in John’s relation, I shall observe when I come to that chapter of John; I have only at present transcribed it, that from the comparing it with the other evangelists we might understand the order of this history.
And as they went to tell his disciples. This seemeth to be their second going, and the order to be thus: When Mary and the rest came to the disciples, and told them they had been at the sepulchre, and what they had there seen and heard, they believed it not. But yet, it being close by the city, and not knowing what to think, Peter resolves to go and see, and so doth John. They both run, but John comes there first, but goes not into the sepulchre, but only looks in, and sees the linen clothes lying. Peter comes (for it was very near the gates of the city); he goeth in, seeth the linen clothes, and the napkin. Then John also adventures to go in, and saw and believed; he is the first is said to have believed. Then they went home. But Mary stayed weeping; and now and then looking into the sepulchre, she seeth not the clothes only, but two angels sitting, the one at the head, the other at the feet of the place where the body of Christ did lie. They ask her why she wept. She tells them, Because they had taken away her Lord, and she did not know where they had laid him. Now, saith John, when she had said thus, estrafh eiv ta opisw, we translate it, She turned herself back, and saw Jesus standing, Joh_20:14; which seemeth to contradict our evangelist Matthew, who saith,
As they went to tell his disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, All hail. Our translation now would make one think that Mary was still at the sepulchre, and there looking back she saw Jesus; and this seemeth either to assert that Mary saw Christ twice, once at the sepulchre, once in her return to the city, or else to contradict Matthew; but the Greek words may be translated, ‘She was turned backward’, that is, was going back to tell his disciples, and met Christ, who saluted her, saying, All hail.
Though Mary Magdalene be only named, and possibly all the women who were with her at first did not come back with her the second time, yet it is plain she was not alone, for Matthew saith, They came and held him by the feet, and worshipped him. He bids her be not afraid, but go and tell his disciples they should meet him in Galilee. For the other discourse betwixt him and Mary, we shall meet with it when we come to that chapter in St. John’s Gospel where it is mentioned. Mark saith, that when they had heard he was alive, and had been seen of her, they believed not. We do not read that the angels appeared either to Peter or John, much less that Christ as yet showed himself to them; so they had only the testimony of Mary as to these things, and their own view of the empty sepulchre, and the clothes lying by. How hard a thing it is to believe spiritual mysteries, above the reach of our reason! So hard, that no revelation of flesh and blood is sufficient to beget such a faith.