How Did John Present the Resurrection of Jesus?

The resurrection of Jesus Christ is one of the most significant events in Christian history. It is a symbol of hope and faith, and it represents the power of God over death and sin.

John, one of the four Gospels in the New Testament, presents a unique perspective on the resurrection of Jesus. In this article, we will explore how John presented the resurrection of Jesus through his writing.

The Context

Before we dive into John’s presentation, it’s essential to understand the context in which he wrote. John was one of Jesus’ closest disciples and witnessed many of his miracles, teachings, and ultimately his crucifixion.

He wrote his Gospel decades after Jesus’ death, around 90 AD. By that time, Christianity had spread throughout the Roman Empire, and John’s Gospel was written to provide a theological perspective on Jesus’ life.

John’s Presentation

John presents the resurrection as a pivotal moment in human history. He begins by describing how Mary Magdalene went to visit Jesus’ tomb on the third day after his crucifixion and found it empty.

“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.”

This description sets up an atmosphere of mystery and anticipation. The fact that Mary visited early in the morning shows her dedication to Jesus even after his death.

John then goes on to describe how Mary runs back to tell Peter and another disciple about what she has seen.

“She ran and found Simon Peter and the other disciple, whom Jesus loved. She said,’They have taken away our Lord out of the tomb.'”

This passage highlights Peter’s importance as a leader among Jesus’ disciples. It also shows John’s humility by referring to himself as “the other disciple whom Jesus loved.”

After hearing about what Mary found, Peter and the other disciple ran to the tomb to see for themselves. John’s description of their race to the tomb adds a sense of urgency and excitement to the story.

“They started out, running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first.”

When they arrived at the tomb, they found it empty just as Mary had said. However, John adds a crucial detail that sets his Gospel apart from the other three.

“He saw and believed—for until then, they still hadn’t understood the Scriptures that said Jesus must rise from the dead.”

This passage indicates that John believes in Jesus’ resurrection based on faith rather than physical evidence. It also shows how Jesus’ resurrection fulfilled prophecies in the Old Testament.

Finally, John ends his account of Jesus’ resurrection with an encounter between Jesus and Mary Magdalene. When Mary returns to the tomb after Peter and John have left, she sees two angels who ask her why she is crying. Then she turns around and sees Jesus standing there but doesn’t recognize him at first.

“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.'”

However, when Jesus calls her by name, Mary recognizes him immediately. This scene highlights Jesus’ divine knowledge and love for his followers.


John’s presentation of Jesus’ resurrection is unique because it emphasizes faith over physical proof. He also highlights how Christ’s resurrection fulfills prophecies in Scripture while adding an atmosphere of mystery with details like Mary visiting early in the morning and Peter racing to see for himself. Overall, John’s account adds depth to our understanding of this pivotal moment in Christian history.