Our reading today includes the account of Jesus raising Lazarus in John 11:1 – 44. Many commentators identify this story as the climax of Jesus’ public ministry. It is also the most dramatic miracle that John reveals in his gospel and more compelling than the resurrections performed by Jesus in Luke’s gospel (the widow’s son in Luke 7:11-16 and Jairus’s daughter in 8:40-56)

A few things that strike me as I read this passage: 1) In verse 25 and 26, we read one of Jesus’ “I AM” statements:  I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Jesus then asked Martha if she believed what Jesus had just said and she responded positively. Jesus is also asking us this same question. How will you respond?

With this statement, Jesus moved Martha from an abstract belief in the resurrection that will take place ‘on the last day’ to a personalized trust in Him who alone can raise the dead. (Quoted from the MacArthur study Bible)

In verse 35, is that famous verse, “Jesus wept.” Why did Jesus weep at this time? Was He mourning for His dear friend Lazarus, who was about to be raised to life after spending four days in the grave? More likely, this was the grief of the Son of Man for a fallen world that was stricken with sin and death. The world He would soon give His life for. This verse brings to mind the words of Isaiah, “He was …a Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. (Is. 53:3)

by Paul Schmidt, Elder

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