54 “Now when the centurion, and they that were with him, watching Jesus, saw the earthquake, and those things that were done, they feared greatly, saying, Truly this was the Son of God.”
55 “And many women were there beholding afar off, which followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering unto him:”
56 “Among which was Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James and Joses, and the mother of Zebedee’s children.”
Searching the other Gospel accounts gives us a more detailed list of the other women that were among that faithful group at the Cross.
Mark 15:40, “There were also women looking on afar off: among whom was Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James the less and of Joses, and Salome.”
John 19:25, “Now there stood by the cross of Jesus his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalene.”
Luke 24:10, “It was Mary Magdalene, and Joanna, and Mary the mother of James, and other women that were with them, which told these things unto the apostles.”
There is no record of the disciples at the crucifixion, some commentators think they weren’t even there. These faithful women were there and the Lord honored them by recording their names and their examples of ministry and worship for all of eternity.
They had ministered to the Lord, one anointed the Lord and wiped His feet with her hair, the highest act of worship recorded. They even brought the news of the Lord Jesus to the apostles.
We have great examples set before us.
These women believed and followed to the point of watching the final outplaying of their Savior’s life on earth. It was a bloody, gory sight, not fit for any human eye, and these women braved it all, beholding Jesus, the author and finisher of their faith.
Beholding is to view attentively, to perceive with the eyes, to enjoy the presence of one, to discern, to ascertain or find out by seeing.
How could they bear that sight?
How did they not faint in adversity?
How were they not emotionally destroyed the rest of their lives for the cruel, wicked scene they chose to behold?
They experienced the miraculous transformation that takes place when we all stand before the Cross, beholding Jesus, understanding it was for OUR sin that He bore the cross.
He took the stripes we deserve. He took the suffering that we deserved. He did it because of His great love for His Father and His desire to be obedient unto death. He did it because He loved the world and desired to make a way for us all to enjoy the fellowship with the Father that He enjoyed.
They could behold the suffering, because they basked in His love.
Are you a woman beholding?