The Gospel According to John

Chapter 20

Mary comes to the sepulcher, 1, 2; so do Peter and John, ignorant of the resurrection, 3-10. Jesus appears to Mary Magdalene, 11-18, and to his disciples, 19-23. The incredulity and confession of Thomas, 24-29. These written signs are sufficient to salvation, 30, 31.

1 On the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene comes to the sepulcher early, when it was yet dark, and sees the stone taken away from the sepulcher. 2 Then she runs and comes to Simon Peter and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and says to them, "They have taken away the Lord out of the sepulcher and we do not know where they have laid him." 3 Therefore, Peter and that other disciple went forth and came to the sepulcher. 4 And they both ran together, but the other disciple outran Peter and came to the sepulcher first. 5 And he, stooping down, saw the linen cloths lying, yet he did not go in. 6 Then Simon Peter comes following him and went into the sepulcher and sees the linen cloths lying, 7 And the cloth that was around his head not lying with the linen cloths, but wrapped together in a place by itself. 8 Then that other disciple who came first to the sepulcher also went in, and he saw and believed. 9 For as yet they did not know the Scripture, that he must rise again from the dead. 10 Then the disciples went away back to their own home.

11 But Mary stood outside at the sepulcher weeping. And as she wept, she stooped down to look into the sepulcher, 12 And sees two angels in white sitting, one at the head and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain. 13 And they say to her, "Woman, why do you weep?" She says to them, "Because they have taken away my Lord and I do not know where they have laid him." 14 And when she had said this, she turned herself around and saw Jesus standing, and did not know that it was Jesus. 15 Jesus says to her, "Woman, why do you weep? Whom do you seek?" She, supposing him to be the gardener, says to him, "Sir, if you have carried him from here, tell me where you have laid him and I will take him away." 16 Jesus says to her, "Mary." She turned herself and says to him, "Rabboni," (which is to say, Master). 17 Jesus says to her, "Do not touch me, for I have not yet ascended to my Father. But go to my brothers and say to them, 'I ascend to my Father and your Father, and to my God and your God.'" 18 Mary Magdalene came and told the disciples that she had seen the Lord and that he had spoken these things to her.

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, Jesus came and stood in the midst and says to them, "Peace be to you." 20 And when he had said this, he showed his hands and his side to them. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord. 21 Then Jesus said to them again, "Peace be to you. As my Father has sent me, even so I send you." 22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and says to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive the sins of anyone, they are forgiven, and if you retain the sins of anyone, they are retained."

24 But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came. 25 The other disciples therefore said to him, "We have seen the Lord." But he said to them, "Unless I see in his hands the print of the nails and put my finger into the print of the nails and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe."

26 And after eight days again his disciples were inside, and Thomas with them. Then Jesus came, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, "Peace be to you." 27 Then he says to Thomas, "Reach here with your finger, and behold my hands. And reach here with your hand and thrust it into my side. And do not be faithless, but believing." 28 And Thomas answered and said to him, "My Lord and my God." 29 Jesus says to him, "Thomas, because you have seen me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed."

30 And truly Jesus did many other signs in the presence of his disciples which are not written in this book. 31 But these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life through his name.


Matthew Henry Commentary - John, Chapter 20[➚]


[v.1] - Gospel Link: Matthew 28:1; Mark 16:1-2; Luke 24:1.

[v.6-7] - Gospel Link: Luke 24:12.

[v.9] - "the Scripture" - From John Gill's Exposition: "Meaning not some particular passage of Scripture, but the writings of the Old Testament in general, and the various places in it, which spoke of the resurrection of Christ, either in a way of type, or prophecy; such as Genesis 22:3 and though our Lord had often referred to some of them, at least as in Matthew 12:40 yet such was the dulness of the disciples, or such their prejudices in favour of the Messiah being to continue, and set up a temporal kingdom, that even John, who leaned on his breast, and Peter, who was so inquisitive and desirous of knowing our Lord's meaning in everything, did not understand the sense of his words, nor of those places of Scripture he had reference to."

[v.11-13] - Gospel Link: Matthew 28:2-7; Mark 16:5-7; Luke 24:3-7.

[v.18] - Gospel Link: Matthew 28:8; Mark 16:8-10; Luke 24:8-10.

[v.23] - From the Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary: "In any literal and authoritative sense this power was never exercised by one of the apostles, and plainly was never understood by themselves as possessed by them or conveyed to them. The power to intrude upon the relation between men and God cannot have been given by Christ to His ministers in any but a ministerial or declarative sense—as the authorized interpreters of His word, while in the actions of His ministers, the real nature of the power committed to them is seen in the exercise of church discipline." From the Geneva Bible study notes: "The publishing of the forgiveness of sins by faith in Christ, and the setting forth and proclaiming the wrath of God in retaining the sins of the unbelievers, is the sum of the preaching of the gospel."