Lesson 101: John 20:2-8 – Running To Spread The News

by Pastor Ricky Kurth

You're listening to Lesson 101 from the sermon series "The Gospel of John" by Pastor Ricky Kurth. When you're done, explore more sermons from this series.



Mary didn’t run to spread the good news of the resurrection, she ran to spread the bad news that the Lord’s body had been moved. But she’d come to serve the Lord by anointing His body, and nothing would stop her. Do you feel the same way about serving the Lord?

Since the Lord cast 7 devils out of her (Mark 16:9) that makes her a type of that generation of Israel (Mt.12:43-45). The Lord cast the devil out of Israel at the Cross (John 12:31), but Israel needed to be filled with the Spirit at Pen-tecost. When she refused to be, Satan was ready to move back in with 7 other devils when the dispensation of grace interrupted his plans. But after the Rapture he’ll move back into Israel with 7 other devils. Who might they be?

The beast will have 7 heads (Rev.12:3), which are the 7 historic oppressors of Israel (Rev.17:7-9). Five were fallen in Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Media-Persia and Greece, one was then present in Rome, and Antichrist’s kingdom was yet to come. When the devil re-enters Israel, it will be with the spirit of all those oppressors. They are worse than he in that Satan is always sneakier when working through peo-ple. We see a picture of them being cast out of Israel at the 2nd Coming in Mary coming to the Lord’s tomb, which represents Israel’s resurrection, with 7 devils cast out of her

It is significant that Peter ran to the tomb. His last name was Barjona (Mt.16:17), which means “son of jona” (Jo.1: 42). Peter was the son of a man named after Jonah, who ran from the Lord, and like him, Peter ran from the Lord when He was arrested, but here we see him running to the Lord. If you are running from Him, turn around like Peter!

There was a symbolic reason why John outran Peter. The Lord’s death was a baptism (Luke 12:50), and the Lord told James and John they’d have to be baptized with death too (Mark 10:38) rather than take the mark of the beast (Mt. 10:39). So here the sepulcher was a type of the Lord’s death and the death Jews will have to die to be saved in the Tribulation. So when John got to the grave before Peter,

you’d think it symbolized how John would die before Peter.

But Peter actually went into the grave before John (John 20:5,6). This fits what the Lord told Peter about how he’d die first (John 21:19-22). John didn’t live till the Lord came because prophecy was interrupted by the age of grace, but this makes John a type of Jews who will live through the Tribulation to see the Lord’s coming and Peter a type of Jews who will die in the Tribulation and go to their graves and have to be raised to enter the kingdom.

“Napkins” (John 20:6,7) covered the face of the dead (Jo.11:43,44). “Wrapped” doesn’t mean “neatly folded.” The Greek word means rolled as a helix (Rev.6:14 cf. IIKi.2:8 cf. Mt.26:59) and referred to how they wrapped the dead (Acts 5:5,6). This helps us understand why John “believed” when he saw the grave clothes not unwound but empty (Jo.20:8). He’d already believed the gospel, of course; here he believed the Lord rose.

This destroys the theory that the disciples stole the body (Mt.28:12-15). They couldn’t have re-wrapped it into that empty cocoon shape. This is the reason why both Matthew and Mark say the angels pointed to the grave clothes (Mt.28:5,6; Mark 16:6), for they are the proof He rose, not the empty tomb.

Joseph was a type of this. He was falsely accused of a crime and cast into prison, as the Lord was accused of our crimes and cast into the prison of death and the grave. When Joseph got out he changed his clothes (Gen.41:14), and the Lord changed His graveclothes for righteousnesess (Isa.59:17). That’s a picture of what will happen to you if you die before the Rapture. You’ll drop your graveclothes too. If you live to see the Rapture, you’ll drop your clothes like Elijah did (IIKi.2:11-13). God will replace your old clothes with eternal righteousness (cf.Ps.132:9) as part of the Bride (Rev.19:8).

The Lord left His grave clothes behind to symbolize Romans 6:9, and that will be true of you too, but Paul’s point is that you should live that way now (Ro.6:11), leaving the grave clothes of sin behind you!

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