Resurrection moments—here and now

As we reflect upon the events of that Easter morning, may our hearts be full of the spiritual conviction and expectation that we, too, can experience the power of God.

It was resurrection morning and, according to the Gospel of John, Mary Magdalene had just been to Christ Jesus’ sepulcher and found that the giant stone at its entrance had been rolled away (see John 20:1–10). Her beloved Master was nowhere to be seen. Just imagine what that must have been like for her. Had someone taken him? That’s what she thought, and she was anxious to share the news. She went running to tell Peter and the disciple “whom Jesus loved” what she had discovered.

The Swiss artist Eugène Burnand (in the tradition that John was that disciple “whom Jesus loved”), depicted what happened next in his 1898 painting “The Disciples Peter and John Running to the Sepulchre on the Morning of the Resurrection.” This wondrous artwork, currently hanging in the Musée d’Orsay in Paris, has been described by some as the greatest Easter painting ever created. Burnand captured a poignant moment in the two men’s discipleship.

The artist’s rendering helps the viewer to imagine what may have been going through the minds of these disciples as they quickly made their way to Jesus’ tomb after encountering Mary Magdalene. Perhaps they were feeling unsettled concern. Were they remembering Jesus’ prophecy that he would be crucified and after three days rise again? They had to see for themselves, and they found only Jesus’ linen clothes and the cloth that had been around his head lying in the tomb. 

Enjoy 1 free Sentinel article or audio program each month, including content from 1898 to today.

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April 3, 2023

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