Today's Bible Study Lesson
“Mary Magdalene: A Faithful Disciple”
Aim: Discern Mary Magdalene’s motivation for committing her life to Jesus, Appreciate the sacrifices Mary Magdalene made in order to follow Jesus, Embrace a lifestyle of wholehearted discipleship.
Background: Mark 15:40; 16:1-9; Luke 8:1-3; John 20:10-18
Bible Lesson: Luke 8:1-3; Mark 15:40; John 20:10-18
“And it came to pass afterward, that he went throughout every city and village, preaching and shewing the glad tidings of the kingdom of God: and the twelve [were] with him,
And certain women, which had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities, Mary called Magdalene, out of whom went seven devils,” Luke 8:1-2 KJV
- Much like today, Mary is a very popular name given to many baby girls. In our culture last names may be used to distinguish one Mary from another; however, in many Biblical accounts only the first name is used. Magdalene was not Mary’s last name, but rather it identifies Mary’s hometown, Magdala on the western shore of the Sea of Galilee.
- Our study opens after Jesus had attended a meal with Pharisees where a woman of a sinful lifestyle anointed Jesus’ head and feet with expensive perfume. Jesus forgave her sins leaving the Pharisees asking the question, “Who is this who even forgives sins?”
- As Jesus went about towns and villages preaching and announcing the Good News about the Kingsdom of God, his twelve disciples accompanied Him along with several women who had been freed from evil spirits and healed of diseases. Mary Magdalene, who was freed from seven demons, Joanna, the wife of an administrator for the son of Herod the Great and Susanna (nothing known about her besides her name) were a few of these women. It is further recorded that they were not just followers. They also personally contributed of their own resources to support the ministry of Jesus.
- At the Crucifixion, when “Jesus cried with a loud voice and gave up the ghost,” and the Centurion confessed his belief in Jesus with the statement: “Truly this man was the Son of God.” There were women looking on from afar. They did not desert the Master even at this horrific unjust execution. Again Mary Magdalene is present. With her on this occasion were Mary, Jesus’ mother’s sister, Salome, the mother of the disciples, James and John. These women demonstrated their loyalty by being present to witness the sacrificial death of Jesus Christ.
- At the Tomb, the site of Jesus’ Resurrection, Mary Magdalene came early on the first day of the week following the Crucifixion and found the stone rolled away from the mouth of the Tomb. She reported to the disciples that Jesus’ body had been taken. Peter and John rushed to the Tomb with Mary Magdalene and confirmed that Jesus’ body was no longer there. Peter and John left; however, Mary Magdalene tarried weeping and she was blessed to see the appearance of two comforting angels and to witness the first appearance of Jesus Himself after His Resurrection. She did not recognize Jesus initially, but Oh, when Jesus called her name she was overcome by the joy of knowing that Jesus was alive. Her first word of acknowledgement was “Rabboni!” (which is Hebrew for “Teacher’).
- Mary Magdalene was not allowed to cling to Jesus as she probably would have liked, instead she was given the assignment to go tell His brethren “I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.” In obedience to the Master, she found the disciples and gave them His message.
- Loyalty to Christ has great rewards; however, it requires patience, dedication, perserverence, and a heart of expectancy that He is true to His Word.
- Remembering what God has done for us should cause us to yearn to learn more about Him and to share the Gospel with all whose paths we cross.
- Discipleship to Jesus requires that we devote our time, talent, and treasures in the building of God’s kingdom on earth.
Bible Verses to Keep in Mind:
“And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.” Deuteronomy 6:5 KJV
“Then Jesus said to his disciples, If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me.” Matthew 16:24 NLT
“Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” Matthew 6:19 - 21 KJV