The Jesus and Lazarus story was recorded only by one of the four gospel writers. John saw the importance of recording this incredible story. Matthew, Mark and Luke however, mostly wrote about the events which took place in Galilee.
While Jesus rose others from the dead in the Bible, there was something unique and special about the resurrection of Lazarus. John saw how unique and special this story was and committed an entire chapter with fifty seven verses to it.
When something is really important like the story of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead, the writer need to take time to deliver the information in full details.
It is obvious that this information was delivered in full details by the Apostle John. Even though the other Apostles (Matthew, Mark and Luke) left this incredible miracle out of their writings, John took pains to include it and it's indeed a blessing to us all.
Martha and Mary the sisters of Lazarus sent message to Jesus telling Him that His friend Lazarus was sick. Jesus and Lazarus were very good friends, but so were He and the two sisters.
This Mary was the same Mary that anointed the Lord with ointment and wiped his feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick. verse 2
When Jesus heard the news, the Scripture said that He remained in the same place that He was for approximately two more days.
Many persons asked the question: "why didn't Jesus go immediately when He got the news that His best friend was sick?"
To answer this question, we need to look at the spiritual aspect of the whole story. Jesus is omniscient, which means that He knows everything. Therefore, He already knew that all of this would took place even before it did. Therefore He told His disciples that the sickness was not unto death.
In other words, Lazarus had to die a temporary death, so that Jesus could perform the miracle of calling him back to life. Therefore the reason why Jesus did not move instantly when He got the message; was because God was supposed to get some glory out of it all.
The disciples kept questioning Jesus about going to Bethany where His friend Lazarus was buried. They didn't want Him to go back there, because of fear for His life, for the last time He was there the Jews tried to stone Him.
To this Jesus replied; "Are there not twelve hours in a day? If any man walketh in the day he stumbleth not, because he seeth the light of the world. But if a man walketh in the night, he stumbleth, because there is no light in him. John 11:9 & 10
Jesus spoke this in parable as He always do when He talked. However, He was not talking about a natural daylight and a natural night. Jesus was talking about the fact that His time to die, (which the night represents) had not yet come.
The day however, which represents His life, was still in action, and the time for the night, (although it wasn't far) was not there as yet. Therefore Jesus had to do the work of Him who sent Him while it was yet day light.
Jesus said that He was glad that Lazarus died. He was not rejoicing over the death of the man, Jesus was glad because it would increase His disciple's faith and belief in Him.
Jesus said that He was glad that He was not there when the man died, because if He was there, He would not die, because He would have healed him from the disease before it got a chance to take his life.
When Jesus arrived at the home of Lazarus, he was already buried in the tomb for three long days.
Bethany was very close to Jerusalem, and a lot of Jews came to mourn with Mary and her sister Martha. However, The Scripture said: when Martha heard that Jesus had arrived on the scene, she immediately ran to meet Him.
When she saw Him she said: "Lord, if you were here, our brother would not die." She said this because she knew that Jesus is the great Physician and there is no sickness that He cannot heal.
Jesus therefore said unto her: "I am the resurrection and the life, he that believeth in Me, though he were dead, yet shall he live. And whosoever liveth and believeth in Me shall never die." John 11:25 & 26
Then he asked her if she believe that and she said yes Lord.
Mary however, when she heard the new that Jesus was there, she did not come out to meet Him but sat in the house grieving both over her loss and the fact that Jesus took so long to come.
However, after Martha finished talking with the Lord, she went and told Mary that Jesus was there and was calling her. Mary hesitated no longer, but went quickly to the Lord Jesus, and the Scripture said that she fell down at His feet crying: "Lord if You were here my brother would not die."
When Jesus saw her and everyone else weeping over the death of Lazarus, the Scripture said: Jesus wept. John 11:35
When Jesus saw the lamentations and the sorrowful protest of the people due to the death of their brother Lazarus, He wept also and asked that they show Him where the tomb was that they laid his body.
At this point some of the people were saying: "Could not this man which openeth the eyes of the blind, have caused that even this man should not have died?
Jesus could hear every conversation and he knew every thought and understand all of their concerns and pain, so again He groaned in Himself as He approached the cave where Lazarus's body was laid.
Jesus therefore commanded that the stone be removed from the mouth of the cave and immediately it was done.
The Scripture said: Martha, the sister of Lazarus, said unto Jesus, "Lord, by this he stinks, because he had been dead four days." John 11:39
However Jesus answered her and said: "Did I not tell you, that, if you would only believe, you would see the glory of God?" John 11:40
After Jesus finished talking with Martha, He prayed this prayer: "Father, I thank Thee that Thou hast heard me. And I know that Thou hearest me always: but because of the people which stand by I said it, that they may believe that Thou hast sent me."
After the prayer, Jesus cried with a loud voice:
"Lazarus, come forth." John 11:43
The Scripture said: "And he that was dead came forth, bound hand and foot with grave clothes, and his face was bound about with a napkin. Jesus said unto them, "Loose him, and let him go."
Then many of the Jews which came to Mary, and had seen the things which Jesus did, believed on Him.
But some of them went their ways to the Pharisees, and told them what things Jesus had done.
After the resurrection of Lazarus, many of the Jews believed on Jesus. In other words they became new converts, which was the commencement of their salvation.
However there were some who did not believed on Him and so they went and told the Pharisees all the things which Jesus did.
This Jesus and Lazarus study has some great lessons to take away. One of the main lessons is that "the glory belongs to God."
With everything that took place throughout the course of this story we realized that without God we are nothing. Without God we cant even live, because He hold our lives in His hand, and in Him we live and move and have our being.
Another take away lesson is, In everything you will find people who are with you and people who are against you. Because there were believers as well as unbelievers.
This was evident when Jesus performed the miracle of resurrecting Lazarus from the dead.
Thank you for reading. I hope something that you read have encouraged you even a little in the Lord.
God bless you.
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