The Women at the Cross - Easter Week - Episode 73

The Women at the Cross - Easter Week - Episode 73
Season 5 Sweet Selah Moments Podcas...

 
 
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Nicole and Sharon take a one week break from Ephesians in order to explore the lives of the women who were brave enough to stand at the cross and "be there" while Jesus suffered and died. That takes a special kind of courage and a definite and deep love. There's a lot to unpack as the story unfolds, and we made some sweet discoveries along the way. Join us for a fresh look at the greatest event in history from the eyes of some pretty amazing women.

Read the transcript for The Women at the Cross-Easter Week-Episode 73

Speaker 1 (00:03):

Is your world a little crazy and off kilter at the moment, feeling a bit frazzled? Well then, you’ve found the perfect place to regain some quiet today. Welcome to the Sweet Selah Moments Podcast, where we study his Word and encourage one another. The Sweet Selah Moment Podcast is a cooperative production of Word Radio and Sweet Selah Ministries.

Nicole (00:29):

Welcome to the Sweet Selah Moments Podcast and blessings on your Easter week coming up. How do you celebrate Easter? Does your church do a Maundy Thursday service or some kind of Good Friday remembrance? Do you wear extra nice clothes Easter morning? What about a sunrise service? Is that your favorite or something that is so early in the morning that it makes you shudder and hide under the covers? Write us a comment and let us know. We all have unique ways of celebrating this holy time of remembering that Christ suffered and died for our sins and rose again and saved us. Today we are going to walk away from our Ephesians study and focus on this special time of year. This episode, episode 73 is called The Women at the Cross.

Sharon (01:09):

You know, Nicole, I had no idea when I thought up this great idea that we should study the women at the cross, how complicated it would be.

Nicole (01:16):

Oh?

Sharon (01:17):

You know, I thought it’d be simple. (Nicole: Yeah) So I’m excited to dig in and study the details today women played an important role throughout Jesus’ ministry at a time when they were seldom mentioned or noticed elsewhere. (Nicole: Yep) It’s just amazing. And their role at the cross and the resurrection brings them great honor and blessing. I really love it, but oh, it must have been brutally hard to have been there. I can’t even watch movies with violence in them. Do you know the Princess Bride where they do the torture scene? I have to leave. I know it’s supposed to— I found nothing funny about it. I can’t handle it. I can’t, I have to close my eyes. I have to leave. (Nicole: Yeah. Poor Wesley) Right. I don’t even like when Bambi’s mother dies. How about you?

Nicole (02:01):

Oh, no. Yeah. I’m known for crying through most war movies. It’s pretty bad. It actually got a lot worse after having kiddos, Sharon, I used to be able to watch movies and it didn’t really bother me too much. But now that I’m a mom, it just goes right to my heart. I cry at certain Huggy commercials. It’s terrible. I’m just so weepy now at TV things but.

Sharon (02:18):

You cry at commercials.

Nicole (02:19):

I do. It’s terrible. The Subaru commercials, the baby commercials. But do you remember when that movie, The Passion came out? The one that pictures his crucifixion? (Sharon: Oh, yes) It’s such a good movie, but I’ve only ever seen it that once. (Sharon: Yeah) I’ve tried to watch it again and I just, can’t, it’s really hard to see it. And I, I can’t imagine being there in person and having known him personally and touched him and to watch him die that way it must have been just devastating, heart wrenching to be there.

Sharon (02:47):

Heart wrenching. They had such courage.

Nicole (02:49):

Oh my, to stay? Yeah! (Sharon: They did) I can’t even watch the movie again, like to stand there and watch, you know, it’s amazing. I’m excited to read more about these women.

Sharon (02:58):

Yes. Yes. I’m so impressed by them. I am, you know, when we watched The Passion, we watched it in a movie theater first. (Nicole: Oh yeah) And we didn’t speak, I don’t think for several hours after the movie, we walked out in silence. We got in the car in silence. (Nicole: Yeah) We drove home in silence and we walked away from each other. (Nicole: )h yeah) It just was so powerfully impactful and I’ve never wanted to see it again either.

Nicole (03:23):

I know. It’s like, I feel like I should, but probably I can’t. I don’t know if I can.

Sharon (03:27):

Yeah, unbelievable.

Nicole (03:28):

Yeah. It’s a lot.

Sharon (03:29):

But they went, they went and I admire them who went and everyone that made herself go, just wanting to lend their support, you know, to be there. (Nicole: Yeah) They, what trumped the, ‘I don’t wanna see such a gross sight’ was that ‘maybe my presence will help in some way’.

Nicole (03:44):

Oh yeah, be a comfort, yeah.

Sharon (03:46):

And you know, Nicole, I didn’t realize how much someone’s presence meant until my mother-in-law died. And then later Dad Gamble, you know, (Nicole: Yeah) ten, fifteen years later, there really is a comfort in someone being present. Even if they don’t say a word, the bewilderment and the overwhelmingness of being at a funeral of someone you loved dearly really messes with you. It’s really hard. You’re like on half speed. I literally don’t remember what anybody said at either of those funerals. But I remember them being there so much, especially cause both of them were in Massachusetts, which is an hour drive south (Nicole: Oh wow) from New Hampshire. (Nicole: Yeah) So not a lot of my friends came and I understand it and they’re all forgiven and I love them. But the drive itself was a gift. (Nicole: Yeah) For Dad Gamble’s in particular cause it was during a snowstorm.

Nicole (04:37):

Oh no.

Sharon (04:39):

You know, and they didn’t have to say a word. (Nicole: Yeah) They, they were there. They were present in my grief. (Nicole: Mm) It meant the world. It really did. So presence matters. (Nicole: Yeah) In sorrow and grief and they were more familiar with crucifixions where you’re basically attending somebody being killed. We don’t do that anymore. Right. We don’t go attend someone being killed.

Nicole (05:00):

Right.

Sharon (05:01):

Right?

Nicole (05:01):

Right.

Sharon (05:02):

But they did. And they knew presence mattered. (Nicole: Right) That they were standing there near him, hurting with him. Even if he didn’t notice it a whole lot. (Nicole: Right) Which Jesus did cause he was God.

Nicole (05:15):

Right.

Sharon (05:16):

So, there we go.

Nicole (05:18):

Oh, they were amazing. I know. It’s what you said about presence. It really does. It’s so true. You know, when I was younger, I didn’t understand that. And I would beat myself up for not having the right words to comfort people, but going through my own troubles and sorrows and especially during the loss of one of our babies, you know, having people just be there and help, you know, hold me when I cried or just listen, it meant the world to me. Yes. You know, and no words can take away (Sharon: No) you know, the pain. No words can comfort at a time of that deep sorrow. But just being with someone somehow makes the burden feel a little lighter.

Sharon (05:50):

Yeah. It brings me back to last week’s episode, Better Together.

Nicole (05:53):

Yeah. Even in death and suffering (Sharon: Right) and slow, painful death.

Sharon (05:57):

Right, Job’s friends were at their best when they said nothing.

Nicole (06:00):

That’s true. Yeah.

Sharon (06:00):

For seven whole days.

Nicole (06:02):

They got in trouble when they started talking, Oh man.

Sharon (06:08):

So presence matters.

Nicole (06:09):

Yeah.

Sharon (06:10):

And those women were present.

Nicole (06:11):

Yes, Oh.

Sharon (06:13):

So all four gospel accounts talk about women being at the cross. I think that’s interesting. (Nicole: Mm) Maybe it was unique for women to be at the cross. I don’t know. (Nicole: Oh yeah) but it was note worthy enough that Matthew, Mark, Luke and John mentioned women specifically being at the cross. (Nicole: Yeah) Now Luke just leaves it at that. There were women at the cross.

Nicole (06:34):

He’s very direct.

Sharon (06:34):

That’s it. That’s right. He doesn’t bother to name them. And I kind of wonder if it’s because Matthew and Mark and John all named some of the same women, but some different ones. So maybe Luke who liked precision is like, you know what, we don’t actually really know who was there. So I’m just not going to name them all.

Nicole (06:50):

There were women.

Sharon (06:51):

Yeah. And if you think about it, when you go to an event, like if you going to a wedding, you pretty much know the bride and groom are there and maybe their family, but you don’t necessarily notice the guests.

Nicole (07:03):

Right.

Sharon (07:03):

Right? That’s not the focus.

Nicole (07:04):

There’s so many and they’re all mulling about, you know.

Sharon (07:06):

Exactly. Well, they went to an event, the crucifixion. (Nicole: Right) And they knew there were three crosses and there were thieves hanging there and they probably knew there were Roman soldiers, but they weren’t necessarily cognizant of all the people that were watching as witnesses.

Nicole (07:21):

Right. Cause you’re especially watching Jesus. Right.

Sharon (07:23):

You’re watching Jesus. And you’re numb. Right?

Nicole (07:25):

Right.

Sharon (07:25):

So it makes such sense to me that the names are different.

Nicole (07:31):

Right.

Sharon (07:31):

You know, that people remember different names, but the women, themselves being there was significant enough that they were all spoken of, their presence mattered. So we’re gonna read the three accounts that name the women, and kind of grin at the differing names mentioned, and going, ‘well—?’. And if someone actually had wanted to make the Bible tidy because they thought that it had been made up like a good story (Nicole: Right) they would’ve fixed this part. Right? You know, if I wanted to tidy up the Bible, I would definitely not have had different accounts at the cross.

Nicole (08:01):

If it wasn’t the spoken word of God, true as it is, right, you would try to make it better to sell it better because—? Oh, yeah.

Sharon (08:06):

Yeah, you would, yeah. I actually think it adds to the veracity of the scripture that there’s confusion here. That different people remember different people being there. It makes sense. (Nicole: Huh) It just does. (Nicole: Yeah) Just like there would be today if we asked different people who was at a certain event.

Nicole (08:17):

That’s very true.

Sharon (08:18):

Yeah. Yeah.

Nicole (08:19):

It’s a great point.

Sharon (08:20):

Yeah. The truth will set you free. That’s the truth. (Nicole: Yeah) That different people remember different women there, but they all knew the women were there.

Nicole (08:26):

Right.

Sharon (08:26):

So why don’t you read Matthew? I’ll read Mark and you read Luke and then we’ll end together with John, and then we’re gonna focus on the women from John’s perspective.

Nicole (08:34):

Nice. All right. So Matthew 27:50-56, “Then Jesus shouted out again and he released his spirit. At that moment the curtain in the sanctuary of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook. Rocks split apart and tombs opened.” (Nicole: That’s so wild) “The bodies of many godly men and women who had died were raised from the dead. They left the cemetery after Jesus’ resurrection, went into the holy city of Jerusalem and appeared to many people. The Roman officer and the other soldiers at the crucifixion were terrified by the earthquake and all that had happened. They said, this man truly was the son of God. And many women who had come from Galilee with Jesus to care for him were watching from a distance. Among them were Mary Magdalene, Mary, the mother of James and Joseph, and the mother of James and John, the sons of Zebedee.” So the three women listed here, although Matthew says there were more, were Mary Magdalene, Mary, the mother of James and Joseph, not sure who she was, but, and then James’ and John’s mom. So John was at the cross and so was his mother. And I wondered who James and Joseph were so I looked them up and @gotquestions.org it said that James was the same James that was known as one of the twelve disciples.

Sharon (09:52):

Interesting.

Nicole (09:52):

The same one that wrote the book of James. That’s kind of cool. So I’m assuming that Joseph is his brother, but I couldn’t find much on Joseph. So I’m not sure what he did, but he cared enough about Jesus to be at his crucifixion.

Sharon (10:03):

He did.

Nicole (10:04):

And their mom was there too. (Sharon: Yeah, yeah) So it’s just kinda interesting, you know?

Sharon (10:07):

Very, very interesting. Yeah. Yeah. Okay. And so Mark 15:37-41 says, “Then Jesus uttered another loud cry and breathed his last and the curtain in the sanctuary of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. When the Roman officer who stood facing him, saw how he had died he exclaimed ‘this man truly was the son of God’. Some women were there watching from a distance, including Mary Magdalene, Mary, the mother of James, the younger and of Joseph and Salome. They had been followers of Jesus and cared for him while he was in Galilee. Many other women who had come with him to Jerusalem were also there. You know, Nicole, I’m looking at this and it says, Mary, the mother of James, the younger and of Joseph, it doesn’t say necessarily they were there. Maybe they were there. Maybe they weren’t.

Nicole (10:54):

I think you’re right.

Sharon (10:56):

I just realized that ,so—

Nicole (10:58):

Oh, maybe they weren’t there.

Sharon (10:59):

They might not have actually been there. Now we know John was there because Jesus talks to him.

Nicole (11:03):

Yes. Maybe that’s what I was thinking.

Sharon (11:04):

Yeah. Yeah. I’m just looking at that going, wow, that’s kind of interesting. So, but he, so basically Mark lists some of the same people, Mary Magdalene shows up again and Mary, who was mom to James and Joseph and then Salome who, according to most Bible scholars was James’ and John’s mother, (Nicole: Oh) the sons of Zebedee. So she was mentioned without her name, (Nicole: In the first, section) the first one, yeah, yeah.

Nicole (11:24):

Huh? Interesting.

Sharon (11:25):

So mom and wife, mom to the sons of thunder.

Nicole (11:28):

Right.

Sharon (11:29):

And wife to Zebedee.

Nicole (11:31):

What a woman.

Sharon (11:31):

So we got her name thanks to Mark who knew that little detail, which the other one didn’t.

Nicole (11:35):

So you kind of get a big picture.

Sharon (11:37):

I’m like, this is so the way a true story would be written with different accounts.

Nicole (11:39):

Oh, it’s true. You would have a different perspective than me. You kind of put it all together and put a bigger picture of that one person’s personality or whatever.

Sharon (11:45):

Exactly. And God allowed four gospels, you know, because we need, you know, all the pieces to fit together. Right?

Nicole (11:52):

Yes.

Sharon (11:53):

So, so, and then Mark also pointed out that there were many other women there as well. So quite a little crowd (Nicole: Yeah) of faithful, mourning women to support Jesus.

Nicole (12:04):

That’s amazing.

Sharon (12:04):

I love their courage.

Nicole (12:06):

I know this is kind of neat. I like reading about them.

Sharon (12:08):

Yeah.

Nicole (12:09):

So let’s look at Luke and see what Luke says about their mention. So Luke 23:26-31, and then I’m gonna read verses 44 and 49. “As they led Jesus away, a man named Simon who was from Cyrene happened to be coming in from the countryside. The soldiers seized him and put the cross on him and made him carry it behind Jesus. A large crowd trailed behind including many grief stricken women. But Jesus turned and said to them, ‘daughters of Jerusalem, don’t weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. For the days are coming when they will say fortunate indeed are the women who are childless, the wombs that have not born a child and the breasts that have never nursed. People will beg the mountains, fall on us, and plead with the hills, bury us. For if these things are done when the tree is green, what will happen when it is dry?’ By this time it was noon and darkness fell across the whole land until three o’clock. The light from the sun was gone and suddenly the curtain in the sanctuary of the temple was torn down the middle. Then Jesus shouted, ‘Father, I entrust my spirit into your hands’. And with those words, he breathed his last. When the Roman officer overseeing the execution, saw what had happened he worshiped God and said, ‘surely this man was innocent’. And when all the crowd that came to see the crucifixion saw what had happened they went home in deep sorrow, but Jesus” friends, including the women who had followed him from Galilee, stood at a distance watching.”

Sharon (13:41):

Hmm. Two very different passages with a whole lot of stuff that happened in the middle.

Nicole (13:45):

Yeah. I know. I love this. I like this one because it’s kind of cool that he spoke to the women that followed him as he trudged along, you know, behind, you know, Simon as he carried his cross because he was too weak, even in his weakness, he noticed the women.

Sharon (14:00):

I know. Isn’t that beautiful.

Nicole (14:01):

Cause, you think, when you’re in pain, sometimes all you can focus on is your next breath. If you’re in really deep pain.

Sharon (14:06):

Yes. And he was in deep pain. He couldn’t even carry his own cross.

Nicole (14:09):

Yeah. He was so weak he couldn’t walk with it. (Sharon: Yeah, yeah) So I just, you know, he noticed them, he spoke to them, like what a kind God we serve.

Sharon (14:16):

I Know it.

Nicole (14:17):

You know, and he does it so many times in scriptures, he speaks special messages to the lowest, the people, you know, back in those days who were overlooked or even disdained. You know women were not held in any place of honor.

Sharon (14:27):

No. No.

Nicole (14:28):

So for him to go out of his way to speak to these women in the middle of his pain, it’s just truly touching.

Sharon (14:33):

It is. It is and what he speaks to them about is too. (Nicole: Yeah) He’s like maybe feeling his own pain makes him realize what incredible pain they are going to feel.

Nicole (14:43):

Oh yeah.

Sharon (14:43):

Because in A.D.70, that’s when Titus, if I’ve got this right, my historian husband would say, ‘how do you not know this for sure’ absolutely destroyed Jerusalem. Destroyed it. Jesus knows this is coming because he’s like, oh, you’re weeping for me. I’m weeping for you.

Nicole (15:01):

Oh, I Know.

Sharon (15:02):

You know, sorry for those of you, who’ll be nursing during that horrible, horrible time and have to flee. And so instead of being focused on his own screaming pain (Nicole: Oh, my word, yeah) he’s like, I hurt for you now at what is coming.

Nicole (15:18):

Yeah. Wow.

Sharon (15:19):

What! Who does that? I know. Yeah. Oh, that was beautiful.

Nicole (15:23):

It’s incredible. Yeah. That’s I like this.

Sharon (15:25):

Oh, I like that part too. And even if Luke is not as specific.

Nicole (15:28):

Right????

Sharon (15:29):

Clearly there were women.

Nicole (15:31):

Yeah, there were some women, but.

Sharon (15:32):

He’s the only one that talks about Jesus speaking to them on the way to the cross.

Nicole (15:36):

Oh, that’s true though.

Sharon (15:37):

You know? So each gospel has a detail about the women that’s unique to it, which is why we of course, had to read all four accounts.

Nicole (15:44):

Yes.

Sharon (15:44):

So, yeah. So, okay. Let’s read John 19 together, John 19:20. Is that the one we’re reading together? No, that’s one I’m reading.

Nicole (15:52):

We’ll do that now and then we’ll do it at the end. There’s another long section in John.

Sharon (15:55):

Oh, that’s the one we’re reading together. I’ll read this one and you can read the long one at the end with me.

Nicole (15:59):

Okay, perfect.

Sharon (16:00):

Okay, John 19:25-30, “Standing near the cross were Jesus’ mother and his mother’s sister, Mary, the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother standing there beside the disciple he loved, he said to her, ‘dear woman here is your son’. And he said to this disciple, ‘here is your mother’. And from then on this disciple took her into his home. Jesus knew that his mission was now finished. And to fulfill scripture, he said, ‘I am thirsty’. A jar of sour wine was sitting there so they soaked a sponge in it, put it on a hyssop branch and held it up to his lips. When Jesus had tasted it, he said, ‘it is finished’. Then he bowed his head and he gave up his spirit.” I always loved that last little bit. He gave up his spirit. He chose it.

Nicole (16:45):

Yeah, he did that. That’s so crazy.

Sharon (16:46):

So cool. Yeah. So in this account we hear of three Marys. (Nicole: Yeah) How confusing is that?

Nicole (16:52):

I know.

Sharon (16:52):

Now, fiction writers know better. They don’t name everybody the same name. Right? Everybody has a different name, a distinctive personality so you can figure out what’s going on in the story. This is not fiction.

Nicole (17:04):

Right.

Sharon (17:05):

They all happen to have the same name. It was a common name back then. (Nicole: Yep) So how confusing is that for us? Oh, my word. Now we have two Mary’s who’ve appeared before, Jesus’ mom and Mary Magdalene. And now we have Mary, the wife of Clopas, whoever that was. (Nicole: Yeah) In my translation it says she was basically Jesus’s aunt in some fashion. I thought that was so fascinating. Was she Mary’s sister? I don’t think so. cause they really probably wouldn’t have the same name.

Nicole (17:31):

Oh, that’s true. You don’t name your kids the same name.

Sharon (17:32):

Yeah. But some translators think perhaps she was a sister-in-law and that either Clopas was Mary’s brother or Joseph’s brother.

Nicole (17:39):

Oh, okay. Yeah.

Sharon (17:39):

So she had been kind of an aunt. (Nicole: Yeah) Or, this Mary was actually Joseph’s sister. Right? Cause Joseph might have had a sister. So she’d have been an aunt that way too. Other translators, make it more confusing saying, it could have been a cousin. What? Why?

Nicole (17:53):

Oh man.

Sharon (17:53):

Because they didn’t define that relationship well in those days.

Nicole (17:56):

Oh, okay.

Sharon (17:57):

So I love the fact that the translators have no idea or the commentators didn’t have a clue.

Nicole (18:03):

It could, she could be one of ten different things. We’re not quite sure.

Sharon (18:05):

We don’t know, but there she was.

Nicole (18:07):

But she was there.

Sharon (18:07):

There were a lot of Mary’s at the cross, the end.

Nicole (18:11):

There were a lot of Mary’s there.

Sharon (18:12):

So Mary was a common name. I think we can ascertain that too. (Nicole: Yes) Right. So very cool. So there we are. Four accounts, all telling us that women were there at the cross. Some of them named. We’re gonna focus on the two that are universally agreed upon. Everybody says that Mary Jesus’ mother and that Mary Magdalene were there. Oh my goodness could two women be more different?

Nicole (18:36):

Oh, I know.

Sharon (18:37):

There’s Mary, the mother of Jesus who, as a teenager, lets go of every plan and desire that she might have had and says, may it be to me as you have said, (Nicole: Yeah) I will bear Messiah in my womb. I will be looked at as an unwed mother. Yeah. (Nicole: Yeah) And then we have Mary Magdalene who was tormented by demons, seven demons possessing her. I can’t imagine the abyss you would be in when your body was controlled by pure evil.

Nicole (19:07):

Something so vile and you had no control over it. (Sharon: None) I just—her heartbreak.

Sharon (19:13):

Oh, just a horrible life she lived (Nicole: Oh yeah) before Jesus redeemed her. The only thing that they had in common was their love for Jesus. They both loved Jesus. (Nicole: Oh yeah) They really did. And in special ways, so right. Let’s start with Mary, the mother of Jesus. And then we’ll move on to Mary Magdalene. What are your thoughts, Nicole, on her the mom, being at the cross?

Nicole (19:35):

Can you even imagine?

Sharon (19:36):

No.

Nicole (19:36):

Having to watch your son?

Sharon (19:37):

I know. No.

Nicole (19:38):

I always remember way back in the beginning of Jesus’ birth when she went to the temple with baby Jesus and Simeon had come up and made that prophecy about Jesus and the last part about the sword piercing Mary’s soul.

Sharon (19:50):

Yes, he did. He told her right from the start.

Nicole (19:52):

He did. And I think that was always kind of back there and maybe she didn’t know, it would end, I don’t know if she knew or not it would in his gruesome crucifixion, but it was always kind of there. And I think for her to stand there and see it, like, this is the moment this is it. You know?

Sharon (20:05):

This is what Simeon meant.

Nicole (20:06):

Right.

Sharon (20:07):

Yeah, yeah.

Nicole (20:07):

And it just must have been, I don’t know for her just like, how do you express those emotions that have come full circle through that? You know, like just the heartbreak to finally be there and witness his death. (Sharon: Yeah) And watch your son who never sinned, do this for you and for everyone around him that was mocking him still and spitting. It just must have been —? God must have just held her upright.

Sharon (20:29):

Absolutely.

Nicole (20:30):

To be there (Sharon: Absolutely) you know, and not wanna just go and like rip him off the cross and beat up the guards.

Sharon (20:35):

Yes. The mama bear.

Nicole (20:36):

Stab a few people, you know?

Sharon (20:36):

He’s innocent. Oh. When your child is hurting and they’re innocent? Everything in you wants to rise up.

Nicole (20:42):

You will fight to the end. But for her to not fight must have been so submissive to God’s plan and she knew.

Sharon (20:47):

And she just, her presence was her present (Nicole: Yes) to her son.

Nicole (20:51):

Just being there with her son to the end.

Sharon (20:53):

Uh, uh, uh!

Nicole (20:53):

Oh my word, just amazing. It’s —I know. And then, you know, and I love, it’s so sweet how Jesus to make sure that she was taken care of.

Sharon (21:02):

Wasn’t that precious?

Nicole (21:02):

Like at the very end, he just— and something so sweet, like this is your new son, this is your mama. Take care of her for me, you know.

Sharon (21:08):

It’s so beautiful.

Nicole (21:08):

Like how beautiful at the end he thought of her. Like he knew she was there, he felt her presence then to make sure she was taken care of.

Sharon (21:14):

Right. Right.

Nicole (21:15):

I just love that part.

Sharon (21:16):

Yeah. And so again, he’s thinking of somebody else. At the cross.

Nicole (21:19):

Yeah. Almost at the very end of his death too, you know,

Sharon (21:22):

Yeah, yeah. Unbelievable. So beautiful.

Nicole (21:24):

It is.

Sharon (21:24):

And John must have felt pretty special too. I mean, John always thought he was special. I’m the one Jesus loved.

Nicole (21:30):

I love how he added that in all the time.

Sharon (21:33):

He was like, I really am your best friend, aren’t I? I got Mary.

Nicole (21:35):

I got your mama, so.

Sharon (21:37):

But what an honor for him. (Nicole: Oh yeah) To be entrusted with his mom. Just so, (Nicole: That’s pretty special) very, very cool. Well, let’s finish up now by looking Mary Magdalene. So Mary, the mother withstood it and was there, it was a beautiful thing. I’m gonna read about her first encounter with Jesus in Luke 8:1-3, “Soon afterward Jesus began a tour of the nearby towns and villages preaching and announcing the good news about the kingdom of God. He took his twelve disciples with him, along with some women who had been cured of evil spirits and diseases. Among them were Mary Magdalene from whom he had cast out seven demons; (Sharon: That’s how we know that she’d been possessed) Joanna, the wife of Chuza, Herod’s business manager; (Sharon: That’s an interesting detail) (Nicole: Yeah) Susanna; and many others who were contributing from their own resources to support Jesus and his disciples.” (Nicole: Huh?) Isn’t that interesting?

Nicole (22:30):

It’s really neat to hear that.

Sharon (22:32):

I think that’s so cool that women supported Jesus.

Nicole (22:35):

Yes. That’s really cool.

Sharon (22:36):

Yeah. Talk about radical, even today that’s radical.

Nicole (22:40):

I know.

Sharon (22:41):

So what do you learn about Mary from this first? And then let’s talk a little bit about those women, but —

Nicole (22:45):

I know that’s cool. Yeah. So it says here that Mary was traveling with him and the other women and that she had had seven demons cast out of her, (Sharon: Yeah) so I mean, and diseases too. So Mary had had a great healing from God. So I think she felt that (Sharon: Yeah) like thank you, I’ll follow you to the ends of the earth feeling.

Sharon (23:04):

Oh my goodness, yes.

Nicole (23:04):

You know, to be free from such darkness and to literally walk in the light with the Light of the World. I mean, she must have been a very faithful follower.

Sharon (23:12):

She must have been. Yeah. And she experienced darkness like you and I never have.

Nicole (23:17):

No, I was gonna say the level of darkness—

Sharon (23:18):

It was in her.

Nicole (23:18):

Right. Consuming.

Sharon (23:19):

We talked about the spirit being in us. (Nicole: Right) She had evil in her. (Nicole: Yeah) So the contrast must have been unbelievable. (Nicole: Right) And her story, another person to sit down with in heaven.

Nicole (23:31):

Oh, for real, that’s gonna be so exciting to talk to her.

Sharon (23:32):

How did that happen? Right.

Nicole (23:33):

So yeah. So that’s really neat. And she faithfully followed him. And it’s just kind of neat that she followed along and kind of took care of and helped out.

Sharon (23:39):

Isn’t that precious?

Nicole (23:40):

Yeah.

Sharon (23:40):

Yeah. And I do think it’s precious that Jesus did what God called him to do, which was preach and heal.

Nicole (23:47):

Yes.

Sharon (23:47):

And he was confident enough in that, that it didn’t bother him that women were supporting (Nicole: Yeah) them. He was letting them do their part of the puzzle.

Nicole (23:57):

Right. Maybe figure, cause if he’s, he didn’t have a plan like, oh, I’m gonna stay at this hotel and go through here, he was homeless and food less and he probably didn’t have like one outfit to wear. So they were probably able to come around him and think about those details (Sharon: Yes, yes) that he may probably, he could spent more time healing people or talking to people.

Sharon (24:15):

Exactly, and he knew that was their purpose. That’s the body.

Nicole (24:16):

Yes. And they kept him physically going with food and rest and water.

Sharon (24:20):

Yes, yeah. They had a part (Nicole: Yeah) in the journey.

Nicole (24:23):

That’s amazing.

Sharon (24:23):

And it was actually a provision part which is traditionally a man part.

Nicole (24:28):

Right.

Sharon (24:28):

But in this situation they had the money to contribute. So very fascinating.

Nicole (24:34):

That’s so interesting. What an interesting switch of roles there.

Sharon (24:35):

Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah. So just fun. Okay.

Nicole (24:38):

It is fun.

Sharon (24:39):

All right. So we hear the story of the seven demons also repeated in Mark 16:7 and it says this in Mark 16:7, “After Jesus rose from the dead early on Sunday morning, the first person who saw him was Mary Magdalene, the woman from whom he had cast out seven demons.”

Nicole (24:56):

Maybe seven was just abnormally high.

Sharon (24:58):

I feel like it might have been.

Nicole (24:58):

I don’t know how many demons they normally casted out but that’s—?

Sharon (24:59):

Yeah, yeah.

Nicole (25:00):

Oh my word, poor woman.

Sharon (25:00):

But I think that Mark, at least recognized all the ‘Mary’s’ floating around and wanted to make sure we got the right one.

Nicole (25:08):

Right? That one with the seven demons.

Sharon (25:09):

That one, the seven demon one. Which now leads us to the important role, Mary a woman and not a fancy woman at that, but a woman who had been tormented by seven demons was given. I love how Jesus honored this woman who was brought from the terror and despair of demon possession into the kingdom of light so much. Also Easter is all about the resurrection. We’ve spent time with these women as they grieved. We’re gonna end on a triumphant note and read about the blessing given to Mary and the perfect Son of God, walking out of the grave and conquering death. So we’re gonna celebrate Easter and we’re gonna celebrate the honor given to a woman to be the first one.

Nicole (25:54):

Yeah.

Sharon (25:55):

So why don’t you start with verse one and we’ll go back and forth in John 20:1-18?

Nicole (26:00):

All right. “Early on Sunday morning while it was still dark Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and found that the stone had been rolled away from the entrance.”

Sharon (26:08):

“She ran and found Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, (Sharon: Didn’t we just mention that?) she said, ‘they have taken the Lord’s body out of the tomb and we don’t know where they’ve put him’.”

Nicole (26:19):

“Peter and the other disciples started out for the tomb.”

Sharon (26:23):

“They were both running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first.”

Nicole (26:28):

“He stooped and looked in and saw the linen wrappings lying there, but he didn’t go in.”

Sharon (26:33):

“Then Simon Peter arrived and went inside. He also noticed the linen wrappings lying there.”

Nicole (26:38):

“While the cloth that had covered Jesus’s head was folded up and lying apart from the other wrappings.”

Sharon (26:43):

“Then the disciple who had reached the tomb first, also went in and he saw and believed.”

Nicole (26:49):

“For until then they still hadn’t understood the scriptures that said, Jesus must rise from the dead.”

Sharon (26:54):

“Then they went home.”

Nicole (26:56):

“Mary was standing outside the tomb crying. And as she wept, she stooped and looked in.”

Sharon (27:02):

“She two white robed angels, one sitting at the head and the other at the foot of the place where the body of Jesus had been lying.”

Nicole (27:10):

“Dear woman, why are you crying, the angels asked her? Because they have taken away my Lord, she replied, and I don’t know where they have put him.”

Sharon (27:18):

“She turned to leave and saw someone standing there. It was Jesus, but she didn’t recognize him.”

Nicole (27:24):

“Dear woman, why are you crying? Jesus asked her, who are you looking for? She thought he was the gardener. Sir, she said, if you have taken him away, tell me where you have put him. And I will go and get him.”

Sharon (27:36):

“Mary, Jesus said, she turned to him and cried out, Rabboni, which is Hebrew for teacher.”

Nicole (27:45):

“Don’t cling to me Jesus said, for I haven’t yet ascended to the Father, but go, find my brothers and tell them I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.”

Sharon (27:55):

Mmm.

Nicole (27:56):

Oh, I love that part.

Sharon (27:57):

Oh, I do too so much. “Mary Magdalene found the disciples and told them, I have seen the Lord. Then she gave them his message.” I don’t know! This is just so beautiful. We’re falling apart here.

Nicole (28:12):

It is. It gets me every time!

Sharon (28:14):

Just so incredible. And I can see why she didn’t recognize him at first. She’s weeping. She’s not turned towards him cause that’s when she turns. She’s just so miserable and all he has to say is, Mary.

Nicole (28:25):

Oh, her name once. It gets me every time.

Sharon (28:27):

Yes. It really does to me too.

Nicole (28:28):

He calls her name.

Sharon (28:29):

And then the fact, tell them that I’m going to my Father and now your Father, my God and now your God, because I’ve conquered death and I’ve paid the price for your sins. Now he’s yours.

Nicole (28:42):

I know. I think that part is so beautiful. I know. This is a good one to end on.

Sharon (28:45):

Oh my goodness. Yeah, yeah. And then the first words out of her mouth, I have seen the Lord. And that should be—

Nicole (28:53):

She knew.

Sharon (28:54):

Yeah. Yeah. And that’s our testimony too. We’ve seen him in the way he’s worked in our lives and the way he speaks to us through scripture.

Nicole (29:02):

She recognized him.

Sharon (29:02):

And that’s what we need to say too to the world.

Nicole (29:04):

Absolutely.

Sharon (29:05):

You know. We need to testify. Like she did.

Nicole (29:07):

I know, I love this cause she stayed too. She found all this, like everyone kind of came and ran and went and she stayed. She was there.

Sharon (29:15):

You know what? She did.

Nicole (29:16):

She was in her grief like weeping, but just, she was there for a while longer. And I wonder what kept her there a little bit longer. (Sharon: Yeah) And Jesus found her there, you know?

Sharon (29:24):

I love that.

Nicole (29:24):

It’s really interesting.

Sharon (29:24):

I hadn’t thought of that before, but yes, she kind of outstayed everybody else who were like, right, he’s gone. Let’s go home and talk about it.

Nicole (29:30):

Right. Hey, let’s figure this out. But she’s just there, there at the garden just trying to figure it out. So I don’t know. I just love that. I love that he gave her that honor.

Sharon (29:38):

That honor.

Nicole (29:39):

Tell your brothers.

Sharon (29:41):

Yeah. Yeah. And of the two Mary’s I mean, his mom was worthy of it in a human sense. (Nicole: Right) Much more in terms of her reputation and character and everything. (Nicole: Right) But little Mary Magdalene who had had seven demons, who had gone from darkness to light and then was probably thrust into such terrible darkness when he died.

Nicole (29:58):

Right.

Sharon (29:59):

Is the first one to see the risen Lord, the Light of the World. (Nicole: Wow) Praise God. (Nicole: That’s so beautiful) Let’s pray. Oh Father, the scriptures about the resurrection of Jesus Christ, Son of God, Holy One, King of Kings, Lord of Lord’s, stir us. May we be moved this Easter over and over. May we never tire of what you did. We praise you, Lord Jesus. We agree that your name should be lifted to the highest place, that you are worthy of all glory and honor and praise. Worthy are you the Lamb that was slain and who conquered death. Hallelujah. Amen.

Nicole (30:47):

Amen. Well friend, please remember this Easter week all that Christ did for you and for me, and if you’re a woman, nestle into the thought that Jesus honored women in many ways, you are seen, you are noticed and you are deeply loved. Write us anytime @sweetseleh.org/podcast, donate @sweetselah.org/donations and come back next week for episode 74. We’ve called it A Boatload of Advice. Now that sounds fun.

Speaker 1 (31:19):

We are so glad you stopped for a while with us. The Sweet Selah Moments Podcast is a cooperative production of Word, Radio and Sweet Selah Ministries. More information about this podcast can be found at SweetSelah.org. Thank you for joining us.

 

You can download and print the transcript here.

2 Responses to “The Women at the Cross - Easter Week - Episode 73”

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  1. Marsha Dykshorn says:

    Our church does a Good Friday service. Also we celebrate Easter with three services on Sunday. My husband and I sing in the choir for all of it.
    He is risen. He is risen indeed!✝️🙌

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