oa Conspectus : The Journal of the South African Theological Seminary - John versus the Synoptic Gospels on Mary Magdalene's visit to the tomb

Volume 14, Issue 09
  • ISSN : 1996-8167



In this article, a solution is proposed to an alleged contradiction between the Gospel of John, and the Synoptic Gospels - an apparent contradiction concerning whether or not Mary knew that Jesus was raised when she saw the disciples after her visit to the tomb. John appears to suggest that Mary did not know that Jesus was raised from the dead, whereas the Synoptic Gospels appear to indicate that she did know this. However, it is most likely that Mary Magdalene did not know Jesus was raised from the dead, but the other women did. Therefore, there is no contradiction, because Mary Magdalene and the other women made two different visits to two different groups of disciples. Mary Magdalene left the tomb by herself before the angels had appeared. Before anyone had realised that Jesus had been raised, she reported to Peter and the Beloved Disciple. The other women left the tomb after the angels had appeared, and hence, they did know Jesus was raised, and they reported to another group of disciples.

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