Mary Magdalene was the recipient of one of Jesus Christ’s miracles. He cast seven devils out of her, as recorded in Luke 8:2. She and a number of other women followed Jesus as He and the apostles went to various villages preaching. She often helped minister to Him.
When Jesus was crucified, Mary and other women sat at a distance and witnessed the results of the crucifixion, including the earthquake and the renting of the veil of the temple.
Mary Magdalene was one of the first to learn of the Savior’s resurrection. The gospels differ somewhat in their accounts, but in Luke 23 and 24, we are told that as Jesus was placed in the sepulcher, the women, including Mary Magdalene watched. They went home to prepare spices and ointments, but then waited for the Sabbath day to end.
At that time they went to the sepulcher very early in the morning to prepare the body. However, they found the stone rolled away from the sepulcher. When they entered, the body was missing. As they worried about this, two men appeared to them in shining garments. Mark mentions only a single man sitting on the right side in a long robe who also told them Jesus had risen from the dead and who instructed the women to tell Peter and the others. The women were frightened, but the men asked them why they were looking for the living among the dead. They reminded the women that Jesus had said He would be resurrected the third day. They remembered this and went to tell the eleven remaining apostles, who did not believe the women. However, Peter ran to the sepulcher and found the burial clothing, but not the body and began to wonder what was to happen.
John’s report says that Mary went alone to the sepulcher and ran to tell Peter that the body was missing and she didn’t know where it had gone. He states that Peter and another apostle ran to the sepulcher and found it empty, as Mary had told them. The men left, but Mary remained, crying. As she cried, she bent down to look into the sepulcher and saw two angels, one at the head and one at the foot of the place where the body had once been.
They asked her why she was crying and she said it was because someone had taken Jesus’ body and she didn’t know where it was. She turned around then and became the first person to see the resurrected Christ. However, she didn’t immediately recognize Him and thought He might be the gardener. He also asked her why she was crying and whom she was looking for. She asked Him if He knew where the Savior had been taken. He spoke her name and when she turned toward Him, she recognized Him. He warned her not to touch Him because He hadn’t yet been to His Father, although He was about to do so. Jesus told her to tell the others He was going to God now. She was not believed until Jesus appeared to some of the disciples Himself.
*This article was adapted from the LDS Bible Dictionary and Every Person in the New Testament by Lynn F. Price (Horizon Publishers, , 25-26).