Question 2

Let’s begin by reading John 11:1-35 – “Now a certain man was sick, named Lazarus, of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha.  (It was that Mary which anointed the Lord with ointment, and wiped his feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick.) Therefore his sisters sent unto him, saying, Lord, behold, he whom thou lovest is sick. 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. Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus. When he had heard therefore that he was sick, he abode two days still in the same place where he was. Then after that saith he to his disciples, Let us go into Judaea again. His disciples say unto him, Master, the Jews of late sought to stone thee; and goest thou thither again? 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. But if a man walk in the night, he stumbleth, because there is no light in him. 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. Then said his disciples, Lord, if he sleep, he shall do well. Howbeit Jesus spake of his death: but they thought that he had spoken of taking of rest in sleep. Then said Jesus unto them plainly, Lazarus is dead. And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, to the intent ye may believe; nevertheless let us go unto him. Then said Thomas, which is called Didymus, unto his fellowdisciples, Let us also go, that we may die with him. Then when Jesus came, he found that he had lain in the grave four days already. Now Bethany was nigh unto Jerusalem, about fifteen furlongs off:  And many of the Jews came to Martha and Mary, to comfort them concerning their brother. Then Martha, as soon as she heard that Jesus was coming, went and met him: but Mary sat still in the house. Then said Martha unto Jesus, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died. But I know, that even now, whatsoever thou wilt ask of God, God will give it thee. Jesus saith unto her, Thy brother shall rise again. Martha saith unto him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day. Jesus 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. Believest thou this? She saith unto him, Yea, Lord: I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world. 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. As soon as she heard that, she arose quickly, and came unto him. Now Jesus was not yet come into the town, but was in that place where Martha met him. 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. 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. When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews also weeping which came with her, he groaned in the spirit, and was troubled,  And said, Where have ye laid him? They said unto him, Lord, come and see. Jesus wept.”


Luke 11:35 is the shortest verse in the Bible, but it is a powerful and instructive verse.  This is the remarkable story of how the Lord’s friend, Lazarus had died.  If we read farther into the chapter, we would see that the Lord Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead after he had been dead for four days.  How wonderful to know that our savior has power over death and the grave.


There are a couple of things to consider here.  One is the fact that Jesus, the son of God, is also God the son.  As God, he knew of Lazarus’ impending death.  Secondly, as God, he know that after he died that Lazarus was in the glory.  It might be good to point out that this Lazarus in not the same Lazarus that is spoken of in Luke 16:19-31, in the account of Lazarus and the rich man.  The accounts of the lives of these two men named Lazarus are very different.

Now, since the Lord Jesus knew that Lazarus was now in the glory, in perfect peace, joy, and health,

then why did he cry at Lazarus’ tomb?  Let’s read Hebrews 4:15 – “For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.”  In Hebrews 3:1; 4:14; and 6:20, we are told that our high priest is the Lord Jesus.  So, as high priest, we learn in Hebrews 4:15 that He is touched with the feelings of our infirmities, or our weaknesses.  Simply put, when we hurt, the Lord hurts.  Not only does he sympathize with our feelings, he empathizes with them.  That means that he knows exactly how we feel, and he is touched when we are touched by our infirmities.  So, we find the Lord Jesus suffering along with Lazarus’ sisters.  Mary and Martha felt a sense of great loss and sadness over the death of their brother.  The Lord cried right along with them, understanding the pain they felt.  It’s a blessing to realize that the Lord also understands our pain when we suffer.

In Genesis 39, we have the interesting account of how Joseph was sold into slavery, bought by Potiphar to oversee his house.  He was falsely accused of trying to seduce Potiphar’s wife and thrown into prison.  Although the Lord did not spare Joseph the experience and pain of these things, we read four times in Genesis 39 that the Lord was with Joseph.  We have a promise from the Lord in Hebrews 13:5 where he says, “I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.”  We have a great high priest who will never leave us and who is touched by the feelings of our infirmities.  As we sometimes sing, “Hallelujah, what a savior”.