Jesus said to her, Woman, why weep you? whom seek you? She, supposing him to be the gardener, said to him…
1. Woman has had many reasons for weeping since the fall.
2. Jesus went to His death amid weeping women, and on His rising He met a little company of them.
3. The first words of a risen Saviour are to a weeping woman.
4. He who was born of woman has come to dry up woman's tears.
5. Observe the wise method followed by the Divine Consoler.
(1) Magdalene is to state the reason of her weeping. Often sorrow vanishes when it is defined. It is wise to chase away mystery and understand the real cause of grief.
(2) He helps her also by coming nearer to her grief in the second question. She was seeking Him. He was Himself the answer to His own inquiries.
6. In all cases Jesus is the most suitable Comforter and comfort. Let us put this question in two ways.
I. IS IT NATURAL SORROW?
1. Art thou bereaved? The risen Saviour comforts thee, for He —
(1) Assures thee of the resurrection of the departed.
(2) Is with thee, thy living Helper.
(3) Sympathizes with thee, for He once lost His friend Lazarus; yea, He Himself has died.
2. Are thy beloved ones sick? Sorrow not impatiently, for He —
(1) Lives to hear prayer for healing.
(2) Waits to bless them if they are dying.
3. Art thou thyself sick? Be not impatient, for Jesus lives —
(1) To moderate thy pains.
(2) To sustain thy heart under suffering.
(3) To give life to thy body, as He has done to thy soul.
4. Art thou poor? Do not murmur, for He —
(1) Lives, and is rich.
(2) Would have thee find thine all in Himself.
(3) Will never leave thee nor forsake thee.
5. Art thou of a sorrowful spirit? Do not despond, but see —
(1) Where His sorrows have brought Him.
(2) How He came to the sorrow, and how He cometh still. What He does in His consoling ministry, and imitate Him by cheering others. Thus thou shalt thyself be comforted.
II. IS IT SPIRITUAL, SORROW?
1. Distinguish. See whether it be good or ill. Is it
(1) Selfish? Be ashamed of it.
(2) Rebellious? Repent of it.
(3) Ignorant? Learn of Jesus, and so escape it.
(4) Hopeless? Believe in God and hope ever.
(5) Gracious? Then thank Him for it.
2. Declare. Tell Jesus all about it.
(1) Is it sorrow for others? He weeps with thee.
(a) Are loved ones abiding in sin?
(b) Is the Church cold and dead?
(2) Is it the sorrow of a seeking saint? He meets thee.
(a) Dost thou miss His presence?
(b) Hast thou grieved His Holy Spirit?
(c) Canst thou not attain to holiness?
(d) Canst thou not serve Him as much as thou desirest?
(e) Do thy prayers appear to fail?
(f) Does thine old nature rebel?
(3) Is it the sorrow of one in doubt? He will strengthen thee. Come to Jesus as a sinner.
(4) Is it the sorrow of a seeking sinner? He will receive thee.
(a) Dost thou weep because of past sin?
(b) Dost thou fear because of thine evil nature?
(c) Art thou unable to understand the gospel?
(d) Dost thou weep lest thou grow hardened again?
(e) Dost thou mourn because thou canst not mourn?Conclusion:
1. He is before thee: believe in Him, and weeping will end.
2. He accepts thee: in Him thou hast all thou art seeking for.
(C. H. Spurgeon.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Jesus saith unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou? She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away.
WEB: Jesus said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping? Who are you looking for?" She, supposing him to be the gardener, said to him, "Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away."