The Crucified Christ, by Witness Lee

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The one who experienced the Lord’s resurrection was also a Mary. Many people followed the Lord but did not love the Lord. After they saw that the Lord died and was buried, they all went home. However, there was one among them, Mary, who came early to the tomb while it was yet dark on the day of the Lord Jesus’ resurrection. Did she not know that the Lord was in the tomb? Yes, she knew. So why did she still go there? She did so because of her love for the Lord. She thought that even if she could not see the Lord, it would still be sweet to see His tomb. Mary was the first one who discovered that the stone was taken away from the Lord’s tomb. The tombs of the Jews were caves dug out in a hill, and in the caves they put the dead. Mary saw that the stone was taken away from the tomb and ran to the disciples and told them that someone had taken the Lord out of the tomb. Then Peter and John ran to the tomb, but when they saw that the dead body was no longer there, they went back to their own homes. Mary was the only one who stood outside the tomb weeping (John 20:1-11).

A person who really loves the Lord will love Him to such an extent that he would not care for his own status nor count the cost. In fact, love that does not confuse you is not real love. Many saints’ love for the Lord is too clear and calm, and as a result they do not receive the real light. When the two disciples saw that the Lord was not in the tomb, they went away because they were too calm and too clear. Mary, however, was there weeping. As she wept, both light and revelation came. While she was weeping, she saw two angels, and then she saw Jesus. The Lord asked her why she was weeping. Thinking that He was the gardener, she said to Him, “Sir, if You have carried Him away, tell me where You have laid Him, and I will take Him away” (vv. 11-15).

It was at that moment Jesus said to her, “Mary!” Once this voice was expressed, she knew that it was the Lord. When the Lord was on the earth, He had called her with that same voice. The word of the Lord Jesus was so dear and lovely to her. He said, “Do not touch Me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father; but go to My brothers and say to them, I ascend to My Father and your Father, and My God and your God” (vv. 16-17). In principle, the Lord’s resurrection should not have been seen by anyone, but because Mary was so earnest in her pursuing, the Lord had to appear first to her.

Many Christians quote Romans 9:16, which says, “So then it is not of him who wills, nor of him who runs, but of God who shows mercy.” Many who quote this verse are slothful and loose persons because all those who really know the Lord are determined seekers. Only Mary rose up early while the sky was yet dark. Do not think that this was an easy matter. At that time Jewish girls were supposed to stay home. It would have been very dangerous for her to run to the tomb early in the morning. If something bad had happened to her that day, the brothers would have said that this sister had lost her protection because she had not submitted to authority. God will let only those who love Him know His birth, His death, and His resurrection. Only this kind of person can experience Christ and know Christ. Only a “Mary” can know the Lord’s death and experience the Lord’s resurrection.

(The Crucified Christ, Chapter 9, by Witness Lee)