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Luke 24

Chapter Twenty-four:

Vs. 1-2: In my harmony of the gospel accounts of the Resurrection,[1] I have the women visiting the tomb twice:  on the first visit, they notice the stone has been rolled away, and on the second visit they enter the tomb and meet the angels.  I think Luke wants to focus on the second visit here; thus, he compresses the events of the day in such a way that the women’s discovery that the stone has been rolled away seems to fall immediately before their meeting with the angels inside the tomb.  Perhaps Luke felt compelled to mention the stone’s being rolled away (because otherwise readers would be asking how the women got inside) but did not want to dwell on the events between this discovery and their meeting with the angels.

v. 4: Matthew mentions one angel; Mark mentions one angel “sitting on the right side;” Luke mentions two angels standing “beside them,” and John mentions two angels “sitting where the body of Jesus had been lying, one at the head and the other at the feet.”  In my harmony of the gospel accounts of the Resurrection,[2] I assume that the two angels who are sitting become transfigured into the two angels who are standing, but there might also have been four angels: two standing beside them and two sitting on the burial slab.

Whether more than one of these angels actually spoke to the women, or whether only one was the actual spokesman is up for debate.  Since Matthew and Mark mention only one angel, I suspect that only one of them spoke, and that this was the one “sitting on the right” side (either the head or the foot) of the burial slab.

[1] See notes on Matthew 28.

[2] See notes on Matthew 28.


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