Heavenly Father, we claim the promise that when two or more are gathered in Your name, You will be with us in our midst. Hear us when we pray, in Jesus, name, Amen.
John 11:1-35, Resurrection and the Life, the 5th I AM.
VV 1-3, 1 Now a man named Lazarus was sick. He was from Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. 2 (This Mary, whose brother Lazarus now lay sick, was the same one who poured perfume on the Lord and wiped his feet with her hair.)3 So the sisters sent word to Jesus, “Lord, the one you love is sick”.
Mary, Marta, and Lazarus lived in Bethany. Mary and Marta sent a message to Jesus in Bethabara saying “the one You love is sick’’, speaking of Lazarus. They expected Jesus to come urgently but He did not. Greek for love is “phileo” which means friendship love.
VV4-8, 4 When he heard this, Jesus said, “This sickness will not end in death. No, it is for God’s glory so that God’s Son may be glorified through it.” 5 Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. 6 So when he heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed where he was two more days, 7 and then he said to his disciples, “Let us go back to Judea.” 8 “But Rabbi,” they said, “a short while ago the Jews there tried to stone you, and yet you are going back?”
Commenting that Lazarus’ sickness would not end in death, Jesus stayed back in Bethabara for 2 more days. Jesus loved Marta, Mary, and Lazarus. Greek for love is ‘’agape’’, the unconditional love of God. Jesus’ delay was not a denial. He had a reason to delay. After 2 days, Jesus announced His decision to return to Bethany, even though the Jews in Judea plotted to kill Him.
VV 9-16, 9 Jesus answered, “Are there not twelve hours of daylight? Anyone who walks in the daytime will not stumble, for they see by this world’s light. 10 It is when a person walks at night that they stumble, for they have no light.” 11 After he had said this, he went on to tell them, “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep, but I am going there to wake him up.” 12 His disciples replied, “Lord if he sleeps, he will get better.” 13 Jesus had been speaking of his death, but his disciples thought he meant natural sleep. 14 So then he told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead, 15 and for your sake, I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.” 16 Then Thomas (also known as Didymus) said to the rest of the disciples, “Let us also go, that we may die with him.”
Daylight speaks of life. You must do God’s work when it is still “day” for you. Night speaks of death. When you are dead, you cannot do God’s work. Jesus said Lazarus was asleep, meaning that he was dead. Thomas exclaimed, ‘’let us go and die with him’“.
VV 17-26, 17 On his arrival, Jesus found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb for four days. 18 Now Bethany was less than two miles from Jerusalem, 19 and many Jews had come to Martha and Mary to comfort them in the loss of their brother.20 When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went out to meet him, but Mary stayed at home. 21 “Lord,” Martha said to Jesus, “if you had been here, my brother would not have died. 22 But I know that even now God will give you whatever you ask.”
23 Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.” 24 Martha answered, “I know he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.” 25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; 26 and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?”
Marta was not disappointed with Jesus’s delay in returning to Bethany. Jesus assured Marta that Lazarus will rise again. Martha thought that Lazarus would rise again in the resurrection at the end of the age. John 11:35 is the 5th I AM, “I am the resurrection and the life”. Christians will rise at the rapture, 1 Thess 4: 16, “For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first”. The body of a Christisn who died will be buried or cremated, but the soul and spirit lives on eternally with Jesus in heaven.
VV 27-35,27 “Yes, Lord,” she replied, “I believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, who is to come into the world.” 28 After she had said this, she went back and called her sister Mary aside. “The Teacher is here,” she said, “and is asking for you.” 29 When Mary heard this, she got up quickly and went to him. 30 Now Jesus had not yet entered the village, but was still at the place where Martha had met him. 31 When the Jews who had been with Mary in the house, comforting her, noticed how quickly she got up and went out, they followed her, supposing she was going to the tomb to mourn there. 32 When Mary reached the place where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet and said, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.”
33 When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come along with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled. 34 “Where have you laid him?” he asked. “Come and see, Lord,” they replied. 35 Jesus wept.
Mary worshiped at Jesus’ feet and said, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” John 11:35 is the shortest verse in the gospel, “Jesus wept”. God created Adam and Eve for eternity. But when sin entered the human race, death entered and sin reigned. Jesus identified with our sorrows. Isaiah 53:3, “He was despised and rejected,ma man of sorrows, acquainted with deepest grief. We turned our backs on him and looked the other way. He was despised, and we did not care”. When we weep, Jesus weeps with us. God collects our tears into a bottle when we weep, Psalm, 56:8, “You number my wanderings, Put my tears into Your bottle, Are they not in Your book?”
Heavenly Father, thank You that when we weep, You weep with us. You collect our tears in a bottle and records them in Your book. This is how much You loved and cared for us, in Jesus’ name, Amen.