42 It was Preparation Day (that is, the day before the Sabbath). So as evening approached, 43 Joseph of Arimathea, a prominent member of the Council, who was himself waiting for the kingdom of God, went boldly to Pilate and asked for Jesus’ body. 44 Pilate was surprised to hear that he was already dead. Summoning the centurion, he asked him if Jesus had already died. 45 When he learned from the centurion that it was so, he gave the body to Joseph. 46 So Joseph bought some linen cloth, took down the body, wrapped it in the linen, and placed it in a tomb cut out of rock. Then he rolled a stone against the entrance of the tomb. 47 Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joseph saw where he was laid.
The Burial of Jesus
Joseph of Arimathea baffles me. Why would s leader who was a member of the council bury Jesus? It’s not that he couldn’t be a believer, but why didn’t he speak up? Perhaps he did, but his voice was buried at the trial. Perhaps he didn’t speak up because of fear, but now he repents and his commitment to the dead Jesus is going to make up for his lack of commitment to the live one. I tend to think that, being a kangaroo court, certain members like Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus were intentionally left out. It did take great courage to approach the Roman leader and as for the body of one who had been killed for sedition. Joseph’s commitment to the Kingdom of God was genuine.
his passage seems to have been included to counter revivalist theories. Maybe Joseph of Arimathea stole the body of a swooning Jesus and then, after Jesus was revived, Jesus walked among the witnesses who subsequently saw him. Also, Mark guards against another fallacy, that the women went to the wrong tomb. The tomb that they visit, which is empty, must be that of Jesus. They saw him laid there.
We believe you were buried. We believe that you were dead. In joining you in your death, we renounce the sin that you carried. We declare ourselves dead to it and that we will embrace it no more.
- Who takes Jesus’ body for burial?
- What do you think motivated him?
- Why are the women included at the end of the burial narrative?
- Do you believe Jesus was dead?
- What is the significance of Jesus’ death as opposed to his new life?