I recently reread the Bible passage The Raising of Lazarus, and, as often happens when I pick up the Bible or read Laudate’s downloaded version, I found a new message in the familiar story.
Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. So when he heard that he was ill, he remained for two days in the place where he was. Then after this he said to his disciples, “Let us go back to Judea.”
~ John 11:5-7
How can one little word have such impact?
“So when he (Jesus) heard that he was ill, he remained for TWO DAYS in the place where he was.”
And during those two days, Lazarus died.
How long those two days must have felt for Mary and Martha and those mourning Lazarus.
And yet, Jesus stayed where he was. Not only did he stay, but before that the Bible says, “Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus.”
This means that he stayed BECAUSE he loved them???
We tend to think that if someone loves us they should do what we want, when we want, the way we want. If I had been Martha or Mary, I’d have been pretty upset with Jesus. Martha and Mary’s words show they may have been upset too,
Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” (John 11: 21)
When Mary came to where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet and said to him, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” (John 11:32)
At this, Jesus became deeply troubled and wept with them. Jesus Loved Lazarus and knew death was a part of life so why would He weep?
I wonder if He wept because He wished people didn’t have to experience death and for the sorrow death causes. Jesus knew better things lie ahead for those who believe in Him, yet still, He wept.
And then, He called to Lazarus and raised him from the dead.
Jesus waited to call Lazarus until he had been “asleep” for two full days. He joined in the weeping. He became deeply troubled.
Why? Why, when He could have snapped His fingers and cured Lazarus before the man even sneezed, did he allow all this suffering and sorrow and loss?
The Bible tells us Jesus Loved the family SO He allowed them to suffer, yet, He overcame their suffering and provided a deeper joy than they could have realized had they not gone through that dark period. He Loved them enough to let them suffer so that they would have a greater Love than before – and at the same time, Jesus suffered with them. He wept while they wept.
We can try to rewrite the Bible, claim that people change or things just didn’t work out, but the Bible clearly states Marriage is until death do us part.
When we break those vows it hurts not only us, as death hurt Lazarus, but those around us. We see Martha and Mary weeping, but also anonymous townsfolk. Death, whether it is the death of an individual or the death of a marriage, has rippling affects across society.
And Jesus mourns and weeps along with us for the death.
However, Jesus has power to resurrect the divorced just as He did Lazarus. He has the power to call us from the grave of divorce and bring us to a new life a greater joy and love.
You are not meant to sit in mourning in darkness forever. Will you rise when He calls?
Your Turn To Share:
When did it seem as though God was waiting to answer your prayers? Was it for a job, a child, a home, a move? Has an answer delayed shown you better results than you’d have hoped?
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