Return to Bethany – Part 4

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John 11:38-44

38 Then Jesus, deeply moved again, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone lay against it. 39 Jesus said, “Take away the stone.” Martha, the sister of the dead man, said to him, “Lord, by this time there will be an odor, for he has been dead four days.” 40 Jesus said to her, “Did I not tell you that if you believed you would see the glory of God?” 41 So they took away the stone. And Jesus lifted up his eyes and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. 42 I knew that you always hear me, but I said this on account of the people standing around, that they may believe that you sent me.” 43 When he had said these things, he cried out with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out.” 44 The man who had died came out, his hands and feet bound with linen strips, and his face wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unbind him, and let him go.” (ESV)

  • Jesus Wept
    • Hurting and sorrow that others were experiencing
    • Callousness of the Jews
    • The disciples lack of understanding concerning Jesus authority and power
    • Unbelief of those present
    • Indecision of many to profess faith in Him
    • Jesus’ own love for Lazarus
      • Jesus always knew that Lazarus would return to life
  • Tears lead to Anger
    • The second time that John brings this up
    • “In Himself” – Outraged by what He sees
      • Jesus will confront His opponent – Death
    • Jesus orders the tomb be opened
  • Martha’s Response
    • She still did not understand what was going to happen but probably wished for it
  • Jesus’ Reply
    • “If you believe”
    • “God will be glorified”
      • She told Jesus that she did believe, but did she really? (Vs. 23-27)
  • The stone Rolled Back
    • Jesus prays
      • He had already been in communication with the Father
      • He prays aloud – this prayer is for the benefit of those around Him
        • Teaching them
        • Evangelizing them
      • Jesus prays intimately with the Father – indicating a personal relationship, not just generically to a supreme being
    • Jesus’ prayer shows His desire to carry out the Father’s will – John 5:19
  • The Awakening
    • Not a whisper – a SHOUT!
    • Lazarus emerges, still in the grave clothes
    • A stunned reaction – not recorded in the passage but imagine how people would react today
    • Jesus was known for reaching out and touching the untouchable – Matt. 8:2, 3

Jewish law made contact with the dead to cause one to be “unclean”


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