Summary: A different look at the resurrection of Lazarus. Was it just a miracle or was there a much more dramatic reason for this occurance?
The Proof In Lazarus Resurrection
Luke 10:38-42. At the home of Martha and Mary.
Jesus and His disciples were traveling when they came to a village (Bethany) where a woman named Martha opened her home to Him.
The Amplified Bible says she “received and welcomed Him into her home.”
Apparently this welcome must have included a fair number of His disciples and traveling companions because the way the scripture tells it Martha was busy with all the preparation that had to be made. She complained to Him that her sister Mary wasn’t helping her but was just sitting at His feet listening to His teaching.
Jesus answered that Martha was worried and upset about many things but only one thing was needed. Mary has chosen what is better and it would not be taken away from her.
This may be the beginning of a wonderful friendship that formed between the Lord and Martha, her sister Mary, and her brother Lazarus. It is probable that Jesus and His disciples visited with Martha and Mary and Lazarus on other occasions.
John’s Gospel gives us an understanding that the relationship was more than just casual but actually very close. Lets go there and see what I am talking about.
John Chapter Eleven.
Verses 1-3 We see here right from the start that John identifies who is sick, where they are from and who they are related to.
But it is verse 3 that seems to indicate a very strong relationship. The sisters sent word to Jesus and this is the word they sent. “Lord, the one you love (so well—AMP) is sick.”
So here we have a sketch of some people who were apparently close friends with not only Jesus but also His disciples.
But Jesus does something very unusual when he receives the message. Instead of rushing right over to Bethany and healing Lazarus he decides to wait an additional two days before He starts in that direction.
His reply to His disciples was, “this sickness will not end in death. No, it is for God’s glory so that God’s Son may be glorified through it.”
And in Verse 5 we again and indication that there was a close relationship in that John tells us plainly: “Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus.”
After 2 days He says to His disciples that it is time to go back to Judea.
In verses 11 through 15 he tells the disciples that Lazarus has died. And even tells them in verse 11 that He is going to “wake him.”
Verses 17 through 37 Jesus arrives and Lazarus has now been dead for four days. Jesus is met first by Martha who went out to meet Him. She then returns for Mary and Mary goes out and meets Him.
There were many Jews who had come to comfort Mary and Martha and they came to Jesus with Mary.
Seeing them weeping He asks where Lazarus was lain (buried).
Verse 35 says that Jesus wept. That statement has caused a lot of questions to be asked, like “why would He weep when he was going to raise him from the dead?”
Verses 38-43. Jesus is again deeply moved. He tells them to remove the stone from the tomb.
Martha says there will be a bad odor because he has been dead four days already.
Jesus reply in verse 40 is, “Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?”
Then after Jesus said, “ Lazarus come out” Lazarus came out of the tomb.
Into Chapter 12
Right off we again see Martha is having a dinner in Jesus honor. Again the familiar relationship with Jesus and the disciples.
Now, why have I gone to the trouble of going through Lazarus death and resurrection like this?
Starting at about the halfway point of His ministry Jesus had begun telling the disciples that He was going to die and be resurrected on the third day. He said this over and over again and is quoted in all the Gospels.
Matthew 16:21. Jesus predicts His death.
Matthew 20:17-19. Jesus predicts His death again.
They had already seen Him raise Jairus’s daughter who had just died but that was not the same, this was a girl who had only just died. (Mark 5:21-43) But, by raising Lazarus He proved to them that He could raise a man who had been dead for four days! I really believe that this was intended to show the disciples and other believers that He also would be raised from the dead. If He, Jesus, could stand before them and raise Lazarus from the dead after he had been dead four full days, then they should have realized that God could do it with Jesus! This whole story is proof that He (Jesus) would be resurrected even after being dead for three days!