We have a wonderful example from scripture in the person of Mary Magdalene. She understood commitment. She possessed the God-given character attributes that flow from commitment: bravery, faithfulness, strength and devotion. She was one of the few followers who stood with Mary, Jesus’ mother, as He was crucified. She stayed and watched the horror of it. We can only imagine her profound grief in seeing the One who gave her life, the One who mercifully cast out seven demons from her body, the One who found her worthy to serve, and the One who loved her unconditionally, suffering and crying out to His Father.
Commitment to God
Commitment requires sacrifice. In Mark 15:40-41, we find Mary Magdalene was one of a group of women who not only followed Jesus, but one who was committed to Him by supporting His work and caring for His needs. So it was not surprising that she would be one of the women who prepared spices for Jesus’ body when she visited His tomb (Luke 23:55-56; 24:1).
John’s depiction of what happened at the grave is powerful. In John 20:1-18 we get a bird’s eye view of what took place.
Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance. So she came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put him!” So Peter and the other disciple started for the tomb. Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. He bent over and looked in at the strips of linen lying there but did not go in. Then Simon Peter came along behind him and went straight into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, as well as the cloth that had been wrapped around Jesus’ head. The cloth was still lying in its place, separate from the linen. Finally the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw and believed. (They still did not understand from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead.) Then the disciples went back to where they were staying.
Mary Magdalene was at the tomb first. She sees the stone rolled away and runs back to tell Peter and John. They accompany her back to the tomb to find only the strips of cloth that clothed the body of Jesus. Not fully understanding at that moment about the resurrection, they leave and go back home. But not Mary.