I’m just reading Matthew 28 in advance of Easter Sunday, and am noticing things I’d never paid attention to before…
- the seismic apocalyptic events shake both the earth (v2) and the guards (v4)
- the Roman condemners have become as dead (v4), while the crucified has become alive (v6)
- the guards are so (literally) shaken by the event that they realise they must announce it (v11 – same word used in Jesus’ instruction in v10)
- these guards are parallel, then, to the women: they move from fear to announcement
- the women experience fear and joy (v8), and the other disciples experience worship and doubt (v17)
- the guards are given silver; the disciples are given gold: ‘I will be with you always’
Here’s the conversation I’m now having with the text:
Text: Do not fear!
Matthew: Why would I? I’m far removed from these events.
Text: Are you? These events show that the world has begun turning upside down: the living are made dead and the dead are made alive – and this is just the firstfruits of the apocalypse
Matthew: Okay, I’m fearful
Text: Do not fear! Worship and announce!