Dying, Crying, And A Resurrection

Dying, Crying, And A Resurrection

John 11:17-44

Your Brother Will Rise Again

Mary and Martha's home in Bethany was only two miles from Jerusalem, making it easy for many mourners to visit. Martha left the crowd to meet Jesus when she heard he was approaching, while Mary decided to stay in the house. Martha's statement about Jesus not being there when Lazarus was ill may not necessarily be a reproach, as Lazarus might have already passed away by the time the message reached Jesus. However, in verse 22, Martha expresses her unwavering belief that Jesus could have healed Lazarus. Jesus tells Martha that Lazarus will rise (v. 23). She assumes it will happen on the last day, when everyone else will also be raised (v. 24). However, Jesus clarifies that he is the resurrection and the life (vv. 25-26), while also affirming that a resurrection will indeed occur on the last day.

I Am The Resurrection And The Life

What is the meaning of Jesus being referred to as the "resurrection and the life"? This title is connected to the prophecy of Israel's restoration, where the return from exile is portrayed as a resurrection from the dead in passages like Hosea 6:2 and Ezekiel 37. Jesus affirms that he is the one who fulfills this promise by being the embodiment of the resurrection since he possesses life within himself (John 1:4; 5:26). Believing in Jesus means being united to the one who has eternal life and cannot be defeated by death. Even though believers in Jesus may pass away physically, it will not be the end, and they will be saved from ultimate destruction (as mentioned in Rev. 20:6). Jesus meant this message in John 11:26 when he said that believers in him will never truly die.

Based on later events in the story, it is clear that Martha did not fully understand the significance of what Jesus had said to her. When Jesus asks if she believes in him (verse 26), she responds by acknowledging him as "the Christ, the Son of God, who is coming into the world" (verse 27). This shows that she believed Jesus was pre-existent, had been anticipated, was descended from David, and was uniquely God's son. However, her reaction in verse 39 suggests that she had yet to fully grasp the meaning of Jesus' previous statements in verses 25-26.

Jesus Wept

The story in John 11 shows that Jesus loved Martha, Mary, and Lazarus, as mentioned in verse 5. Despite knowing in advance that Lazarus would be raised from the dead, Jesus still had an emotional response to the pain and sorrow of death. He did not remain detached from the situation. Jesus is not indifferent toward the difficulties of life. Death is a tragic result of sin, and Jesus is deeply affected by the sorrow and suffering it causes. He doesn't act as an unsympathetic judge who believes people deserve their fate; instead, he is moved to tears. Despite knowing what will happen in this situation, Jesus mourns alongside those grieving. Jesus' love for humanity is demonstrated in his willingness to weep with and for them.

Lazarus Come Out!

Jesus instructs to remove the stone, but Martha seems to misunderstand and believes that Jesus only wants to mourn over Lazarus's body. However, Jesus meant that removing the stone would lead to overcoming death, restoring Lazarus to life, and showcasing his love and power to help as the Messiah. Jesus prays—he is not just reciting prayers without thought but is sharing what is always on his heart and mind in his ongoing connection with the Father. Jesus commands Lazarus to come out, and his voice, through which the worlds were created, babies are formed in their mother's womb, everything is held together, and everyone will be judged, cries out the words that will reverse the greatest curse known: he made the world with his word and with his word he defeated death. Lazarus emerges, and Jesus says, "Unbind him and let him go."





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