This verse is translated in the New King James Version as, "Now when He rose early on the first day of the week, He appeared. . . ." The King James Version translates it, "Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week, He appeared. . . ." Finally, The Interlinear Bible, in its word-for-word translation, renders it, "having risen And early on the first of the week, He appeared. . . ." Does this verse say the resurrection was early on the first day of the week?
Here is another instance of the translators mistranslating a verse because of their preconceived beliefs, arising from the "traditions of men"! The commentators admit the construction of the sentence is unusual, but refuse to acknowledge its plain sense. The literal translation, with only slight modification, gives the best rendering: "And having risen, early on the first day of the week He appeared. . . ."
The Greek word translated "having risen" (anastas, an active aorist participle) suggests an action completed prior to the time of the main verb, in this case, "appeared." Thus, Jesus was resurrected sometime before He appeared to Mary Magdalene early on the first day of the week. That is all that Mark is trying to say! Placing a simple comma after "rose" (NKJV) or "risen" (KJV) is the easiest way to resolve the matter. The words of the angel to the women, "He is risen!" (Matthew 28:6; Mark 16:6; Luke 24:6) also give the sense that He was raised at some point prior to His Sunday morning appearances.
So we see that this verse neither proves nor disproves a Sabbath or a Sunday resurrection! The clues about when He really was raised from the dead—Sabbath at sunset—are found in other verses.
Richard T. Ritenbaugh
'After Three Days'