It seems that it was the women who woke up their spirits,
frozen as they were by a brush with an agonising tortured death.
As they hid behind locked doors in fear, the women challenged them.
Jesus might be dead, but his mission, his spirit, could live on.
This was not a time to give up and hide. They had a job to do.
They were called to take up the mantle that Jesus had shed.
The focus of the new radical faith may have been lost,
there was not even a body around which they could gather,
but the ideas, of equality and justice and sharing and love, lived on.
So, as they sat there in that closed room, Jesus came to them.
As they remembered his life, they were given new hope,
new vigour to go out and to continue his work.
They were encouraged by others with the same vision,
and, though some of their number needed further encouragement,
they were ready to go out to the world with fresh courage, new spirit.
This was the resurrection of Christ, of Christianity,
of ideas that undermined the ethos of cooperating with Roman rule,
that were antithetical to the principles of those who rule in the Temple,
those who later commissioned Paul to destroy the embryo revolution;
a task that he achieved by changing its nature
rather than by destroying its followers.
So Christ became an idol to be worshipped,
instead of a leader to be followed,
and Christianity became an empire
instead of a challenge to one.