Why Are Accounts of Jesus Resurrection Different?

The resurrection of Jesus Christ is a central event in Christianity. The Bible records the event in four different Gospels, namely Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. However, the accounts of Jesus’ resurrection are different in each Gospel.

Why are the accounts of Jesus’ resurrection different?

The differences in the Gospel accounts can be attributed to several reasons. Firstly, it is important to note that each Gospel writer had a unique perspective and audience. For instance, Matthew wrote his Gospel primarily for Jewish readers, while Luke wrote for Gentile readers.

Additionally, the Gospel writers had different sources and witnesses. For example, Mark’s account is believed to have been based on the testimony of Peter while Luke’s account was based on interviews with eyewitnesses.

Another reason for the differences is that some details may have been omitted or added for theological purposes. For instance, John’s Gospel emphasizes the divine nature of Jesus and his victory over death.

The Differences in the Resurrection Accounts

Matthew’s Account

Matthew’s account of Jesus’ resurrection records that Mary Magdalene and another Mary went to visit Jesus’ tomb on Sunday morning after his crucifixion. They found that the tomb was empty and an angel told them that Jesus had risen from the dead.

Mark’s Account

Mark’s account is similar to Matthew’s but adds more details about the women who went to visit Jesus’ tomb. He also records that they were afraid and did not tell anyone about what they had seen.

Luke’s Account

Luke’s account includes details about two disciples who encountered Jesus on their way to Emmaus after his resurrection. He also records that Jesus appeared to all eleven apostles in Jerusalem.

John’s Account

John’s account is unique as it includes details about Mary Magdalene encountering Jesus at the tomb. He also records that Jesus appeared to his disciples twice in Jerusalem.


In conclusion, the differences in the resurrection accounts can be attributed to several factors such as the Gospel writer’s perspective and audience, their sources and witnesses, and theological purposes. However, despite these differences, all four Gospels agree on the central fact that Jesus rose from the dead on the third day after his crucifixion.