by Robert E. Guenther
Continuing our review of the Gospel of John, Chapter 11:21-30. Our Lord is using the death of Lazarus to help Mary and Martha understand questions they had concerning resurrection.
Vs John 11:21 “Then said Martha unto Jesus, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died.” Martha is asking our Lord for more insight into her brother’s death. She is not doubting the Lord’s ability to raise the dead but rather the reason for Lazarus needing to die.
Vs John 11:22 “But I know, that even now, whatsoever thou wilt ask of God, God will give it thee.” Her testimony was that He could have spared her and her sister the pain of losing their brother in death.
Vs John 11:23 “Jesus saith unto her, Thy brother shall rise again.” Our Lord is explaining that the death Lazarus endured was not a permanent one but rather he would be raised at a later date.
Vs John 11:24 “Martha saith unto him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day.” This last day resurrection was in the distant future. Circumstances would change and the Lord would be establishing His Kingdom on the earth.
Vs John 11:25 “Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:” Martha and her sister, as believers in Jesus Christ, will not remain dead but rather are said to be asleep, and waiting for an resurrection.
Vs John 11:26 “And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?” This basic truth is at the very foundation of our faith. We must believe this truth in order to have a resurrection of our own.
Vs John 11:27 “She saith unto him, Yea, Lord: I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world.” In plain words, her testimony as to what she truly believed about the Lord Jesus Christ is what gives her hope of resurrection.
Vs John 11:28 “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.” Mary, was waiting for this news from Martha so she could now go to meet with our Lord.
Vs John 11:29 “As soon as she heard that, she arose quickly, and came unto him.” Mary was free to go see the Lord after Martha informed her that He called her.
Vs John 11:30 “Now Jesus was not yet come into the town, but was in that place where Martha met him.” The questions that Mary had for our Lord needed to be answered by Christ Himself. It is certainly possible the questions were about why the Lord delayed His coming by four days. We know that the waiting by the Lord was necessary to fulfill Holy Scriptures and not just a reason to delay. We know now that it helped their faith as well as ours. ...to be continued
by Robert E. Guenther