2. Jesus’ Declared Truth - v. 17-37
The Scripture tells us by the time Jesus got to Bethany Lazarus was in the tomb 4 days. The process of the embalming, you might remember from the Scriptures about Jesus burial, was that they would use spices to help in the burial. They would rub the body down with the spices and then even put them in the folds of the wrapping. Now that all of the preparations had been done and Lazarus had been dead for four days, the Lord Jesus comes into town. Martha comes first to the Lord Jesus and speaks her mind. It is really hard to discern whether she responded out of faith or out of hurt but regardless she stated that if Jesus had been there Lazarus would not have died. And that is a fact. Jesus would not have let Lazarus die if He had been there with him. But that was not the plan. God had another plan and for their sake and the glory of the Lord Jesus chose not to come right away.
Remember, God's plan and His desires are not ours, they are His to glorify Him with our lives, whether we live or we die. As His child He can do with me what He desires to bring honor and glory to the Lord Jesus. Not realizing that He had to lead her through the whole plan. Does verse 22 mean that she believes that even now, even though he is dead, she believes Jesus can raise Him from the dead? I don’t know and I couldn’t find much about this verse in the commentaries and so it is hard to think that way. The rest of her remarks to Christ doesn’t make me think that. Jesus told her, “Your brother will rise again!” With that Martha begins to talk theology from her head and her intellect. She says, “I know he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.” It is here that Jesus wanted her to know that He was more than she could imagine. Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; 26 and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?”
Jesus gives her the truth! He is the great “I AM” and “the resurrection and the life!” From here He is speaking theology to her and to all of us, it is the truth of the Word of God and this is what we believe as Christians, for He gives us “resurrected life!”
The truth Jesus is letting us in on is this, You believe in Him, you will live even though you die! Now, Jesus says that whoever lives by believing in Him will never die!
What a truth declared by Jesus and what a truth for us to believe. Anyone can believe that and if it is sincere and that is what you truly believe, then you will never die, you will live for eternity with God, even if this old body dies physically.
After Jesus’ conversation with Martha, Mary then comes to Jesus deep with emotion; she finds Jesus and falls at His feet calling out with her heart, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” I see a great difference between Mary’s cry to Jesus and Martha’s statement she gave to Him. As I said, Martha spoke from her mind and it seems that Mary spoke from the heart. Mary bowed at His feet and there is nothing that says Martha did that. But Mary’s heart seems to have just been broken and in seeing that, Jesus also was moved deeply in His spirit and felt her great pain; then He asked where they had laid his body. His heart broke for His friend, “Jesus wept!”