Now a man named Lazarus was sick. He was from Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. (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.) So the sisters sent word to Jesus, “Lord, the one you love is sick.”
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.” Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. So when he heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed where he was two more days, and then he said to his disciples, “Let us go back to Judea.”
“But Rabbi,” they said, “a short while ago the Jews there tried to stone you, and yet you are going back?”
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. It is when a person walks at night that they stumble, for they have no light.”
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.”
His disciples replied, “Lord, if he sleeps, he will get better.” Jesus had been speaking of his death, but his disciples thought he meant natural sleep.
So then he told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead, and for your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.”
Then Thomas (also known as Didymus) said to the rest of the disciples, “Let us also go, that we may die with him.”
On his arrival, Jesus found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb for four days. Now Bethany was less than two miles from Jerusalem, and many Jews had come to Martha and Mary to comfort them in the loss of their brother. When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went out to meet him, but Mary stayed at home.
“Lord,” Martha said to Jesus, “if you had been here, my brother would not have died. But I know that even now God will give you whatever you ask.”
Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.”
Martha answered, “I know he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.”
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?”
“Yes, Lord,” she replied, “I believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, who is to come into the world.”
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.” When Mary heard this, she got up quickly and went to him. Now Jesus had not yet entered the village, but was still at the place where Martha had met him. 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.”
When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come along with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled. “Where have you laid him?” he asked.
“Come and see, Lord,” they replied.
Then the Jews said, “See how he loved him!”
But some of them said, “Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from dying?”
Jesus, once more deeply moved, came to the tomb. It was a cave with a stone laid across the entrance. “Take away the stone,” he said.
“But, Lord,” said Martha, the sister of the dead man, “by this time there is a bad odor, for he has been there four days.”
Then Jesus said, “Did I not tell you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?”
So they took away the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me.”
When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face.
Jesus said to them, “Take off the grave clothes and let him go.”
Therefore many of the Jews who had come to visit Mary, and had seen what Jesus did,believed in him.
Let us, after reading this wonderful passage from the Gospel of St John, focus our thinking on Jesus weeping. Yes, Jesus wept!! In as much as the sentence is one of simplicity, it is also one of beauty and complexity.
Have you ever stopped and paused on this statement; Jesus wept? Have you ever pondered why there is tears in Gods eyes? You may think that tears may indicate weakness of emotion, fear or anxiety but they actually show us humility and love. There are actually three places in Scripture depicting Jesus weeping, each time in a different place and for different reasons.
Jesus wept after speaking with Lazarus’s grieving sisters, Martha and Mary, and seeing all the mourners. That seems natural enough. Except that Jesus had come to Bethany to raise Lazarus from the dead. He knew that in a few short minutes all this weeping would turn to astonished joy, and then tearful laughter, and then worship. But why then did he weep?
The reason maybe is simply the deep compassion and empathy that Jesus felt for those who were suffering. He could see the pain and grief that the were going through. Jesus fwlt touched emotionally. He is moved deeply, by the things we go through. He is saying that He understands; He’s been there and understands our cry.
Jesus knew that he was going to raise Lazarus. still, he gave way to tears, moved by his deep love and compassion for his friends. Likewise, our empathy may move us to “weep with people who weep” Expressing such grief does not indicate that a person lacks faith in the resurrection hope, it simply means we feel and love those who are facing difficulties around them. Yes, JESUS WEPT. Weeping was the cost that he was about to pay to purchase not only Lazarus’s short-term resurrection, but his everlasting life. When we genuinely care about someone, when they hurt, we hurt. Jesus’ weeping here shows His true care and love for us. God never takes our pain lightly even if He knows He will restore everything we have lost. Like a good Father, He does not want to see us in pain, even if He knows that pain will lead to a greater good. One of the greatest gifts we can give someone who is hurting is our presence and sharing in their suffering.
Yes, JESUS WEPT. He did not consider himself above our agonies, but emptied himself of privilege by taking our form, being born in our likeness. Crying is common in this world. It does little good to ask the reason for it. It is inherent in us all as a way of releasing our emotions.
REVELATION 21:4 “AND GOD SHALL WIPE AWAY ALL TEARS FROM THEIR EYES; AND THERE SHALL BE NO MORE DEATH, NEITHER SORROW, NOR CRYING, NEITHER SHALL THERE BE ANY MORE PAIN: FOR THE FORMER THINGS ARE PASSED AWAY?
We are currently in a place which we have not experienced before. We are seeing so much anxiety and fear throughout the communities in which we live. Let us be like Jesus, and allow our emotional to fall down our faces; showing empathy and compassion for the struggles people are facing.
The very heart of the Christian message is that God so loved our weeping world that he gave his own Son to weep with us, and to wipe our eyes, that whosoever believes in him will not weep forever, but have everlasting joy.