Since AD 30, was the Jerusalem church saying the risen Jesus appeared to the Easter women—including Mary?

“Yes, after all…
  • All reports on her seeing Jesus say she's 1st

    A woman joyfully raises her arms in celebration as she stands in front of a line of men.

    Jesus's appearing to Mary is multiply attesed and in all cases where we read of this, it is clear that Jesus appears to her and her group before anyone else (e.g. before the male apostles).

    A full page will debate these 4 arguments:

    • Mary and her opinion on issues everpresent to the Jerusalem church.
    • Mary is listed in all gospels.

    This is relevant because, if Mary was not known in the 1st church (and churches) as the first witness, then there is nothing else that would’ve later recommended her so strongly to all sources as being the first witness. Any attempt to introduce it would’ve been met with extreme resistance (e.g. “how have we not heard about this before?”)

    1. Samuel Byrskog: “Why was she [Mary Magdalene] accorded such an importance? Hengel suggests that her reputation of being the first one to see the risen Lord was the decisive factor. Schüssler Fiorenza agrees. (Schüssler Fiorenza, In Memory of Her, p. 139.) And Esther de Boer, though without a detailed analysis of texts, also speaks of her as a ‘key witness’ to Jesus death, his burial and the empty tomb with the revelation that goes with it.(Boer, Mary Magdalene, pp. 45-55.) Truly, other plausible explanations are hard to find.” [Story as History—History as Story (Brill, 2002), 79.]
      Bart Ehrman: “It is also significant that Mary Magdalene enjoys such prominence in all the Gospel resurrection narratives, even though she is virtually absent everywhere else in the Gospels. She is mentioned in only one passage in the entire New Testament in connection with Jesus during his public ministry (Luke 8:1–3), and yet she is always the first to announce that Jesus has been raised. Why is this? One plausible explanation is that she too had a vision of Jesus after he died.” [“The Inerrancy of the Bible? And Those Who Doubt. Readers’ Mailbag October 2, 2016” at ehrmanblog.org]
    2. And contra some scholars, Mk was not attempting to deal with this by saying concluding his gospel with, “and the women said nothing to anyone.”
  • Mt 28 & Jn 20 independently attest to it

    Both the Gospel of Matthew (chapter 28) and the Gospel of John (chapter 20) reprort on Jesus's appearing to Mary, and they do so without one having borrowed from the other.

    On this page we can debate this evidence:

    This is relevant because Jn and Mt date to around AD 40-90, and so their independent attestations are indicative of a branching from a common older tradition that predates them both. During these early years, the Jerusalem church held primary and dominating sway.

    But no, Plausibly…

  • Mary was herself saying “Jesus visited me”

    A woman kneels grabbing on to the robe of Jesus who is facing her. Another woman is in check behind them.

    Mary Magdalene was herself testifying that Jesus appeared to her alive from the dead. This is factors into the discussion because if Mary was herself saying this then in all likely the Jerusalem church--which she was a part off--was also saying it.

  • In general, 1st church was saying Jesus visited the witnesses

    jerusalem-church-say-jesus-appear

    On this page we can debate these 6 examples and this evidence:

    This is relevant because the AD 30 Jerusalem church was well-poised to know Jesus bio (i.e. so they’d know of these persons and naturally list them as witnesses of the risen Jesus).

“No, after all…
  • Mary is absent in sources that would’ve mention her

    Jesus’s alleged appearance to Mary absent in sources that would’ve mentioned it (if the 1st church knew of it).

    The appearance to Mary is absent multiple expected sources:

    • 1 Cor 15 list would’ve included Mary.
    • Mk 16 would’ve recorded the visit to Mary.
    • Lk 24 would’ve recorded the visit to Mary.
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