Following the death of Jesus, Joseph of Arimathea asks Pilate for permission to take his body. Pilate grants him permission. He is assisted by an interesting figure – Nicodemus. This is the same Nicodemus who comes to Jesus at night (John 3) and who will come to Jesus’ defense (John 7). This reemergence of Nicodemus seems to reflect a growing connection to Jesus. Three days later, Jesus comes back to life! The empty tomb is first discovered by Mary Magdalene, then verified by Peter and John. Although Peter and John return home, Mary Magdalene stays behind. This sets the stage for her encounter with Jesus. She initially thinks he is the gardener. It is only when he says her name that she recognizes him (echoes of John 10:3 … “He calls his own sheep by name”).
Passage: John 19:38-20:18