If the Resurrected Jesus had the Power to Walk Through Locked Doors, Why did He Need an Angel to Open his Sealed Tomb?

Image result for image of angel rolling back the stone from the tomb

After the sabbath, as the first day of the week was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb. And suddenly there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord, descending from heaven, came and rolled back the stone and sat on it.

–Gospel of Matthew

 

Gary:  I’d really love to hear the Christian explanation for this little Bible conundrum!  If anyone has it, please share in the comment section below.  Liam?  Liam??

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22 thoughts on “If the Resurrected Jesus had the Power to Walk Through Locked Doors, Why did He Need an Angel to Open his Sealed Tomb?

  1. Just put a tiny bit of thought to it…

    Nobody ever said Jesus exited through the door. The door was open for the benefit of others.

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    1. Why? What benefit did it provide? As proof to the women of the Resurrection? That doesn’t make sense because Jesus appears to them just minutes later in the Garden and let’s them touch him to verify he is real.

      If the author wanted the empty tomb to be proof of a resurrection, he would have had the Jews going to the tomb with a crowd of witnesses to squelch the rumor that Jesus was risen, breaking the seal of the door, rolling back the door, and everyone seeing an empty tomb with burial linen neatly folded to one side. But nope, an angel rolls back the door to let Jesus out so that he can appear to the women.

      You ASSUME that the angel rolled back the stone for the benefit of others.

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    2. Here you go bro.,
      John 20:19, Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you.

      “Notice that Jesus Christ walks through a closed door (see notes on Luke 24:43 below) This means the stone was rolled away from the tomb to let the disciples in, not to let Him out. He could have walked out through the stone because He managed to go down into the bowels of the earth, several thousand miles, and come back up without anything prohibiting Him (Eph. 4:9).-Ruckman

      *Luke 24:43, And he took it, and did eat before them.

      The marvels of the resurrection body go unnoticed by most of the commentators and critics of the AV. Luke 24:36-43 describe the body with which every born-again child of God will wind up (see Rom. 8:29; 1 Cor. 15:42-54; Phil. 3:20-21; 1 John 3:1-3).

      “This supernatural body can become visible and invisable at will (Luke 24:31). It can pass through solid objects (John 20:19, 26). It can travel at least 150 times faster than the speed of light (see comments on John 20:17). It can consume food without having to digest it or eliminate it (vss. 42-43). And it cannot experience sickness,disease, old age, or death (Rev. 21:4). In short, God promises to give the sinner (free!-Rom. 5:16-18) who trusts His Son, everything that science and education have worked for six millennia to give mankind and have never attained.”-Ruckman

      John 20:17, Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.

      “All the blind commentators and teachers at apostate Bible Colleges and Universities will tell you that Jesus did not say ‘Touch me not’ to Mary; He was simply telling her to stop touching Him. This is non-sense, though, given what happened two hours later in Matthew 28:9.

      *The fact is that Jesus was about to ascend after Mary left Him to go see the disciples (vs. 18). He would go up and then come back down in time to appear to the other women in Matthew 28:9.

      (He would later go back up again in Acts 1:9.)

      Whatever He did in the interim allowed Him to be touched. What is involved in these verses is that while Jesus was on the cross, He became ‘sin for us’ (2 Cor. 5:21; Heb. 9:28). When He was buried, He dumped our sins in Hell (Acts 2:27-31) after making the atonement.

      He stands before Mary sinless, with no blood, preparing to ascend to the Father in Glory to present Himself as the propitiation for our sins (Rom. 3:35; 1 John 2:2).

      He does not go up to Heaven with His blood (as all scholars read Heb. 9:12) to put on any mercy seat because He hasn’t got any when He comes up from the grave (Luke 24:39). He went through His blood going through the universe (Heb.9:14. 23-24).” -Ruckman

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  2. But the text is emphatic that the doors were locked, ft: “That Sunday evening the disciples were meeting behind locked doors because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. Suddenly, Jesus was standing there among them!” (John 20.19). You’ll note too that there’s no mention of his ‘exiting’ – it’s his entrance that is through locked doors.

    So are you saying the gospel writer you’re so desperately and hoplessly trying to defend got it wrong? That actually you know better?

    Or is that you don’t really believe this stuff yourself and so just make up crap as you go along?

    Put some thought into it, ft!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. got WHAT wrong????

      Look, Gary said “I’d really love to hear the Christian explanation for this little Bible conundrum! ”

      What’s the conundrum?????

      Gary says “you ASSUME that the angel rolled back the stone for the benefit of others”, and yes, that would be correct. And, the reason for the assumption is that we are told about the moment when the stone is rolled away in Matthew, but that is NOT the moment that Jesus emerges. So EVIDENTLY, the stone was rolled away for SOME OTHER REASON. And, if it wasn’t for the benefit of Jesus, then, yes, I assume it was for the benefit of somebody else….

      And now, YOU (Neil) are now talking about a whole different set of doors, and… WHAT???

      Exactly WHAT is this big “problem” you’re seeing???

      Man, you guys are nutzo…

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      1. No, the angel rolled back the stone to let Jesus escape the tomb as an invisible spirit, or even as a vapor or gas, so that in the cover of invisibility, he could then *pop* out of nowhere in bodily form, right in front of the women, a few feet away in the Garden, to create a more dramatic appearance experience for them, than if he had simply walked out, which would have been boring.

        It’s all about making a good reading experience for your readers. The more fantastical, the more interesting the read. That is why “Matthew” went to town embellishing “Mark’s” boring Empty Tomb story with angels, earthquakes, appearances, and dead saints shaken awake to crawl out of their tombs!

        Did they have Pulitzer’s back then?

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      2. You are so disingenuous, ft. Here’s the discussion so far which you profess now not to understand:

        Gary’s original point was that if Jesus could walk through locked doors he didn’t need an angel to roll away the stone of his tomb – he could’ve just passed through it.

        You then disputed that Jesus ever walked through locked doors – according to you he only ‘exited’ through a door left open for others.

        I quoted John 20.19 that states Jesus magically appeared in a room to which all the doors were locked.

        Gary’s original point therefore remains valid, and, at least by you, unanswered.

        What is it about this you don’t understand? If you think you’re making the case that biblical accounts of the resurrection can be trusted then be advised your obfuscation and dishonesty are having just the opposite effect.

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        1. Neil –

          First of all, I never once disputed that Jesus ever walked through locked doors. Ever.

          Second, I never said he “exited” a door left open for others. Ever.

          What I said was this: “Nobody ever said Jesus exited through the door. The door was open for the benefit of others.” This was in response to the question posed originally:

          “If the Resurrected Jesus had the Power to Walk Through Locked Doors, Why did He Need an Angel to Open his Sealed Tomb?”

          As you see there, the QUESTION is in regards to the sealed tomb – Why did he need an angel to open THAT door?

          The answer: He didn’t. Why? “Nobody ever said Jesus exited through the door. The door was open for the benefit of others.”

          Jesus could have left the tomb before it was opened by the angel. In the same fashion that he could enter a room with locked doors.

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  3. oh, well, granted, it’s all about making a good reading experience…

    but dang, even good writers want you to use your head. I mean, sheesh.

    you got the stone rolled away in front of a bunch of guards in Matthew, but there’s no Jesus appearing anyplace. Yeh, sure, if you wanna think Jesus came out invisible or like a vapor or something, you can.

    but dang… If Jesus can just pop into a room with locked doors later on, that oughtta be a clue, Sherlock… He didn’t *need* anybody to open doors – or tombs – for his sake.

    man… At least, back then, the writers were writing for an audience that actually used some *intelligence* when reading. These days? My guess is it’s a result of too much time spent reading tweets on an iPhone… The brain just doesn’t engage…

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    1. Anyone with an education and some knowledge about ancient literary genres can see that these stories are allegories, in the tradition of the alleged allegories of Jesus. The author is trying to teach his audience a theological lesson about Jesus using a fantastical, fascinating, fictitious story, just as Jesus often did. There were no angels, no earthquakes, no “in the flesh” appearances. Yes, the author believed that Jesus had risen from the dead and had appeared to some of his followers in some fashion. But all the detailed specifics are most probably literary fiction.

      Everyone in the first century would have known this when reading this book because that is what all writers of first century Greco-Roman biographies did.

      This is what any educated person who knows something about first century literary genres would assume upon reading for the first time these four accounts of the same alleged event. Only someone who really wants this supernatural tale to be true attempts to harmonize the four stories into one. These stories are religious allegories. They are not historical accounts. A few of the early Christians experienced mystical accounts of a risen Jesus, in some form, whether in “visions” (dreams or hallucinations), mistaken identities, or illusions. To attempt to use these four ancient stories as evidence for a literal reanimation of a first century brain-dead corpse is silly. Educated society really must stop giving any respectability to this superstition.

      FYI: I’m really tired of your personal insults. Knock it off, or you are out of here permanently. Got it?

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  4. So, basically, it’s your contention that readers in the first century would have *known* that the story of the resurrection was just some kind of theological allegory?

    When, in your educated view, did this change, such that people began to understand the story of the resurrection as something historic?

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    1. I believe the belief that Jesus had risen from the dead began very early: days, weeks, or months after his crucifixion. I believe at some point prior to Paul’s conversion, the “risen” concept had morphed into a “bodily resurrection” concept.

      I believe that it is very probable that the first readers of Mark, Luke, and Matthew understood that not every detail in a Greco-Roman biography was literal historical fact. As long as the central historical claim (that Jesus had risen from the dead and appeared in some fashion to some of his followers) remained intact, embellished details were perfectly acceptable (and made for much more interesting reading). At some point in the next two centuries, after the Jewish Christian church at Jerusalem was destroyed, the mostly Gentile Church accepted these stories as more literally true.

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  5. BTW – as far as insults go, you begin your last post with a very condescending “Anyone with an education and some knowledge about ancient literary genres can see that these stories are allegories, in the tradition of the alleged allegories of Jesus. ”

    Your implication is that if I don’t see these writings as you do, then I am uneducated and lacking knowledge.

    I’m really tired of your condescension. Especially when I don’t see any particular evidence that you have any greater education than I do.

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    1. My reply WAS meant as an insult to you for your non-stop nasty personal attacks. I had had enough.

      Stick to the topic of the posts.

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  6. re: “I believe the belief that Jesus had risen from the dead began very early: days, weeks, or months after his crucifixion. I believe at some point prior to Paul’s conversion, the “risen” concept had morphed into a “bodily resurrection” concept.”

    I believe that the “risen” concept was, in fact, the original story.

    re: “I believe that it is very probable that the first readers of Mark, Luke, and Matthew understood that not every detail in a Greco-Roman biography was literal historical fact. ”

    I would agree. “Not every detail”. Especially among the Jews, the many references to the OT would have been understood as being presented in a context that was meant to shed light on the OT scriptures, and not to bolster the view of Jesus himself. I think that, in this sense, Marks use (in particular) of many OT concepts was indeed “allegorical”. Like, for instance, he mentions some guy running away from Jesus’ arrest, naked – “A certain young man was following him, wearing nothing but a linen cloth. They caught hold of him, but he left the linen cloth and ran off naked.”

    This seems to go back to Amos, where it says “the naked shall flee away in that day, says the Lord.”

    But, note the context in Mark: This statement (about the naked guy) comes AFTER the pericope says “All of them deserted him and fled.”. So, in context, it’s like this:

    “All of them deserted him and fled. A certain young man was following him, wearing nothing but a linen cloth. They caught hold of him, but he left the linen cloth and ran off naked.”

    It is as if Mark is simply “waxing poetic” here, referring to the Amos scripture in the same fashion that one might say something like this:

    “Yep, old Bob – he became an alcoholic just like his Dad. ‘Sins of the father…'” We see this kind of “allegorizing” in many forms of literature and song. In the case of Mark’s use of Amos, it doesn’t mean the *story* being told simply isn’t true, or is entirely allegorical itself. Jesus *was* arrested, after all.

    re: “As long as the central historical claim (that Jesus had risen from the dead and appeared in some fashion to some of his followers) remained intact, embellished details were perfectly acceptable (and made for much more interesting reading).”

    I would agree.

    And, I would agree that the “literalist” background, from which you came, was a much later development.

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    1. I wonder if the “young man” encountered by the women in the Empty Tomb, in Mark, isn’t the same young man who ran off naked during the arrest, also only found in Mark.

      We can only wonder…

      I will bet that the “young man” motif in both scenes is allegorical, not literal, but we will never know for sure.

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  7. Mark starts his gospel talking about John the Baptist… He quotes Isaiah, the scripture about “I will send a messenger ahead of you” (and, he openly references Isaiah here)

    Then, he goes on to talk about how John was “clothed with camel’s hair and wore a belt around his waist”, which was clearly an allusion to a scripture in 2 King: 1, where it says (of Isaiah) “He was a man with a garment of hair and with a leather belt around his waist.”

    But, I’ve got a theory: In Greek, they simply didn’t have the punctuation that we have.

    My re-write of Marks passage would be like this:

    John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. And all the country of Judea was going out to him, and all the people of Jerusalem; and they were being baptized by him in the Jordan River, confessing their sins. John was “clothed with camel’s hair and wore a leather belt around his waist”, and his diet was locusts and wild honey. And he was preaching, and saying,…(etc)

    Simply putting the quote marks in there indicates, to US (modern readers) that Mark was alluding to something else – namely, the scripture in 2 Kings. As such, it doesn’t mean he was literally clothed in camel’s hair (etc), but rather, like Isaiah, he was a “rustic” figure.

    It wouldn’t surprise me if the “he ate locusts and wild honey” thing wasn’t some kind of colloquial expression used to describe somebody who lived “outback”, and “roughed it”.

    At any rate, my thought is that a first-century Jew who knew the scriptures might understand the allusion (to Isaiah) quickly, and understand it *as* an allusion.

    I think there might be a lot of this going on in Mark. Maybe in Matthew, too. In Luke? Luke was gentile, not likely to have the knowledge of Jewish readers, so he might have made the same mistake modern gentiles make, so when he was “borrowing” from Matt and Mark, he may not have *known* the allusions being made.

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    1. Very possible.

      If you read Raymond Brown’s “The Death of the Messiah”, Brown points out just how complex and layered the four Gospels are. The authors of these four books were skilled writers. They used all kinds of complex literary techniques in their works. They frequently alluded to passages and stories in the OT without being obvious and saying, “As is stated in Isaiah such and such”.

      People should appreciate the literary beauty of these books and stop reading them as messages from a god.

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  8. ooopppsss….. I made an error… In the first paragraph of my previous post, I said that scripture about “I will send a messenger ahead of you” was from Isaiah, but it’s not… It’s from Malachi

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  9. re: “People should appreciate the literary beauty of these books and stop reading them as messages from a god.”

    Yeh, I’ve held that particular position for decades. That doesn’t mean I don’t think they’re *about* God, or that Jesus wasn’t raised from the dead. But, neither do I think that the books themselves were “inspired” to the degree that Christians usually claim, and I certainly don’t think they were inerrant.

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