The Lord hears of Lazarus
1: Now a certain man was sick, named Lazarus, of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha. 2: (It was that Mary which anointed the Lord with ointment, and wiped his feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick.) 3: Therefore his sisters sent unto him, saying, Lord, behold, he whom thou lovest is sick. 4: When Jesus heard that, he said, This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby. 5: Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus. 6: When he had heard therefore that he was sick, he abode two days still in the same place where he was. 7: Then after that saith he to his disciples, Let us go into Judaea again. 8: His disciples say unto him, Master, the Jews of late sought to stone thee; and goest thou thither again? 9: Jesus answered, Are there not twelve hours in the day? If any man walk in the day, he stumbleth not, because he seeth the light of this world. 10: But if a man walk in the night, he stumbleth, because there is no light in him. 11: These things said he: and after that he saith unto them, Our friend Lazarus sleepeth; but I go, that I may awake him out of sleep. 12: Then said his disciples, Lord, if he sleep, he shall do well. 13: Howbeit Jesus spake of his death: but they thought that he had spoken of taking of rest in sleep. 14: Then said Jesus unto them plainly, Lazarus is dead. 15: And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, to the intent ye may believe; nevertheless let us go unto him. 16: Then said Thomas, which is called Didymus, unto his fellowdisciples, Let us also go, that we may die with him.
The Lord comforts Mary & Martha
17: Then when Jesus came, he found that he had lain in the grave four days already. 18: Now Bethany was nigh unto Jerusalem, about fifteen furlongs off: 19: And many of the Jews came to Martha and Mary, to comfort them concerning their brother. 20: Then Martha, as soon as she heard that Jesus was coming, went and met him: but Mary sat still in the house. 21: Then said Martha unto Jesus, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died. 22: But I know, that even now, whatsoever thou wilt ask of God, God will give it thee. 23: Jesus saith unto her, Thy brother shall rise again. 24: Martha saith unto him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day. 25: Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: 26: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this? 27: She saith unto him, Yea, Lord: I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world. 28: And when she had so said, she went her way, and called Mary her sister secretly, saying, The Master is come, and calleth for thee. 29: As soon as she heard that, she arose quickly, and came unto him. 30: Now Jesus was not yet come into the town, but was in that place where Martha met him. 31: The Jews then which were with her in the house, and comforted her, when they saw Mary, that she rose up hastily and went out, followed her, saying, She goeth unto the grave to weep there. 32: Then when Mary was come where Jesus was, and saw him, she fell down at his feet, saying unto him, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died. 33: When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews also weeping which came with her, he groaned in the spirit, and was troubled, 34: And said, Where have ye laid him? They said unto him, Lord, come and see. 35: Jesus wept. 36: Then said the Jews, Behold how he loved him! 37: And some of them said, Could not this man, which opened the eyes of the blind, have caused that even this man should not have died?
This is the next Messianic sign. The Jews had long thought that when a man dies the spirit remains around for three days in case someone might raise the dead man from the dead. But they also thought that after three days the spirit returns to God and then only the Messiah himself would be able to raise the dead from four days and onward. Lazarus a close friend of Christ falls sick and dies. Messages are sent to Jesus but strangely he doesn’t come when called. Christ waits for the fourth day. When he does arrive the people are mourning and the sisters of Lazarus say, If you had been here our brother would not have died but even now we believe that God will hear you. Jesus gave her hope saying he will rise again. Martha replied, we know that he will rise again in the resurrection (the resurrection of the righteous prior to the Kingdom) then Jesus surprised her saying, ‘I am the resurrection, and the life’. Then we went on to explain that those who are believers in Christ is safe in Christ’s care even if they die. He said, ‘he that believes in me, though he dies yet he shall live again’. And then he added, ‘and whoever lives and believes in me will never die – Do you believe this’? This prophecy has a double fulfillment. It applies to those who are believers in Christ who are facing the Tribulation period. But it also applies to those who at this time were not revealed in the purposes of God, who will constitute the Church which is his body. They will be also called to heaven but before the Tribulation. For both groups of believers Christ says that those who are believers who die before Christ’s coming will be raised and those who are alive at his coming will be transformed and never die. Martha replied that she knew that Jesus was the Christ – the Son of God. Then she left to run to Mary because Christ sent her to fetch her. When Mary arrived and Jesus saw the Jews weeping he was overcome with emotion and he wept with them. The Jews wondered whether Jesus could have prevented his death yet they did not think that now after four days Jesus could raise Lazarus. Only Israel’s Messiah could do that.