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John 20 - An Understandable Version (2005 edition)

The Empty Tomb

1. Now early [in the morning], while it was still dark on the first day of the week [i.e., Sunday], Mary from Magdala went to the [cave-like] tomb and saw the stone [had been] removed from [the entrance of] the tomb.

2. So, she ran and came to Simon Peter and to the other disciple, whom Jesus loved [i.e., probably the apostle John], and said to them, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb and we do not know where they have put Him.”

3. So, Peter and the other disciple left [hurriedly] and went to the grave site.

4. The two of them ran together, but the other disciple outran Peter and arrived at the grave site first.

5. He stooped down and looked inside [the cave-like tomb] and saw the linen cloths lying there [i.e., these were wrappings used to hold embalming spices against the body], but he did not go in.

6. Then Simon Peter, who had been following him, also arrived and went [straight] into the cave-like tomb and saw the linen cloths lying there.

7. Now the cloth that had been around Jesus’ head was not lying with the [other] linen cloths, but was rolled up by itself.

8. Finally, the other disciple, who had arrived at the cave-like tomb first, went on into it. And [when] he saw [the grave clothes, but no body], he believed [in Jesus’ resurrection].

9. But these disciples still did not understand the Scripture that [predicted] Jesus must rise again from the dead.

10. So, the disciples went back home again,

Jesus Appears to Mary Magdalene

11. but Mary [from Magdala] was standing outside of the cave-like tomb crying. While she was [still] crying she stooped down to look in the tomb,

12. and there she saw two angels [dressed] in white [clothing] sitting where Jesus’ body had lain, one at His head and one at His feet.

13. They said to Mary, “[My dear] woman, why are you crying?” She answered, “They have taken my Lord away, and I do not know where they have put Him.”

14. After she said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but did not know it was Him.

15. [Then] Jesus said to her, “[My dear] woman, why are you crying? Who are you looking for?” Assuming He was the grounds keeper, she said to Him, “Sir, if you have carried Him away from here, tell me where you laid Him, and I will go and get Him.”

16. [Then] Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned toward Him and replied in the Hebrew language, “Rabboni” which means “Teacher.”

17. Jesus said to her, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not ascended to the Father yet [Note: Apparently Jesus was discouraging Mary from embracing Him in worship as was done in Matt. 28:9, and thereby causing a delay of when the rest of the disciples would learn of His resurrection], but go to my brothers and tell them [I said] ‘I am [about] to ascend to my Father and to your Father, and to my God and your God.’”

18. So, Mary from Magdala went and told the disciples, “I have seen the Lord,” and that He had said these things to her. [See Matt. 28:7-10].

Jesus Appears to His Disciples

19. So, when it was evening on that day, [which was] the first day of the week [i.e., Sunday] and the doors [of someone’s house], where the disciples were gathered, were closed [i.e., probably locked] for fear of the Jewish authorities, Jesus came and stood among them. [Note: Probably Jesus passed through the closed door miraculously]. He said to them, “May there be peace in your hearts.”

20. After saying this, Jesus showed them His hands and His side, so they rejoiced when they saw the Lord [i.e., now convinced that He had indeed risen from the dead].

21. Jesus said to them again, “May there be peace in your hearts. Just as the Father has sent me, so I am sending you.”

22. Upon saying this, Jesus breathed on the disciples and said to them, “[Be willing to] receive the Holy Spirit.” [Note: This “breathing” served as a pledge of the Holy Spirit which actually came on these apostles a few weeks later. See Acts 1:5-8; 2:4].

23. Whosever sins you forgive, they will be forgiven [by God]. And whosever sins you do not forgive, they will not be forgiven [by God].” [Note: Actual forgiveness would result only when people personally responded, by faith, to the Gospel message. See Acts 2:37-38].

Jesus Appears to Thomas

24. But one of the twelve apostles, named Thomas, [and also] called “The Twin,” was not with them when Jesus came.

25. So, the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.” But he replied to them, “I will not believe [it] unless I see the scars of the nails in His hands, and put my finger on the nail scars, and put my hand in His side.”

26. Eight days later [i.e., the following Sunday], Jesus’ disciples were inside [the house] again, [but this time] Thomas was with them. The doors were [still] closed when Jesus [suddenly] stood among them [See note on verse 19] and said, “May there be peace in your hearts.”

27. Then He said to Thomas, “Put your finger here [i.e., to touch the nail scars] and look at my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side [i.e., where the spear had pierced Him]. Stop doubting and believe [that it is really I].”

28. Thomas replied to Him, “My Lord and my God.”

29. Jesus said to him, “Have you believed [that I am alive] because you have seen me? Those who have not seen me and yet believe are [even more] blessed.”

The Purpose of John’s Gospel

30. Jesus performed many other [miraculous] signs in front of His disciples which are not recorded in this book [i.e., in the Gospel of John].

31. But these [signs] are written down so that you will believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that when you believe [this], you will have [never ending] life in His name [i.e., through His person and work].





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