(Note: for a summary of the events of this chapter from the resurrection at dawn to Jesus’ first appearances to Mary Magdalene and the other women, please see post at this link. After the resurrection, Jesus – as He had told the disciples in Matthew 26:32 that He would meet them there – would be with them at the Sea of Galilee, and at a mountain there that He directs them to. But several other events occur before and after this, the details of which are interspersed throughout the gospels in Luke 24 and John 20. And events in a single chapter are in some cases separated by days, and even weeks, as Jesus remained for forty days before the ascension.)
Then some of the guard that had been on watch at the tomb went to the chief priests to tell them what had happened. After deliberating, they gave money to the guards to have them say that His disciples had come and stolen the body while they were asleep, promising to keep them out of trouble if word got back to Pilate. Their acts of unbelief in the face of these eyewitness accounts is stunning, but such was their love for power that they would not let it be jeopardized.
Jesus meets His apostles in verse 16 on the mountain in Galilee that He had directed them to. In verses 18-20, Jesus gives the eleven chosen ones the Great Commission – to go and make disciples of ALL nations “baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.” Jesus has confirmed that His Kingdom is open to everyone. Because this is the end of Matthew, some confuse this event with the time of the ascension. But that comes later at at a different mountain – Mount Olivet, after they returned to Jerusalem.
some images © V. Gilbert & Arlisle F. Beers
Please note: I did not design the reading plan that I am following in my blog. All of my comments in this blog, however, are solely my responsibility. When reading ANY commentary, you should ALWAYS refer first to the scripture, which is God’s unchanging and unfailing word. Reading schedules, as well as a link to the site where you can get the reading plan that I’m currently following for yourself can be found on the “Bible Reading Schedules” page of my website at http://graceofourlord.com. For questions and help, please see the “FAQ” and “Summaries” pages there.