This article is part 3 of a 5 part series on the resurrection.
Christ appeared to the apostles and restored their hope. He set their hearts in the right direction once again. Christ self-disclosure was like balm on their wounds and brought peace and jubilation back into their hearts and renewed their ailing faith.
Keep in mind that while Christ appeared to His disciples, no less than 11 different times, it was not personal faith that caused the sudden change in their attitudes. Rather it was the undeniable presence of Christ to so many on so many different occasions that produced in them that personal assurance that He had indeed returned from the dead and is truly the Son of God! The fact of the resurrection superimposed itself on their weak faith. Previous to Christ appearances they had lost hope. Now their risen Savior eating, talking, performing miracles, appearing suddenly and disappearing, the inescapable reality is that Jesus had risen and that there is no other possible conclusion that can be formulated. Christ had appealed to all their senses so that their souls were overwhelmed with joy. Only the self-disclosure of Christ would suffice to restore their failing hearts.
Read the text carefully from Mat.28:2 and discover for yourself that the stone and the earthquake happened simultaneously as a sign pointing to a great event, a sign to indicate that something truly amazing had occurred. The indisputable conclusion is that Jesus had already risen and that the shaking of the earth and the rolling of the stone pointed to this remarkable feat.
Yet, even with these amazing signs, it was absolutely needful for Christ to appear among them in order to defuse their doubts. Even though inanimate objects and forces of nature gave witness to the truth of the resurrection, it was Christ appearance to his followers that finally convinced them of the indisputable truth of the Resurrection.