Thomas E. Kittrell
October 4, 2010
The man stood in their midst at the tomb of Lazarus. Those standing around were watching him in anticipation. How would this healer respond, they wondered, to the death of one who was his good friend? Here was the healer, the one who was known far and wide for his miracles, and in the grave there was the body of a friend he loved. Would he give some words of wisdom and try to console the sisters who were deep in sorrow? It was certainly too late for healing, for Lazarus had been dead for days. That was surely out of the question. What would the great healer do? As they watched, they were moved by what happened next. Jesus cried!
Was it because Martha and Mary had both scolded him because he had not arrived sooner? Why had he delayed to come when he had heard? Or was this man crying because he would miss his dear friend and would not see him again on this earth? Why didn’t he just do something? There were mourners plenty. It is sad that this man who gave sight to the blind just stands there weeping. Wait! What is that he is saying with a loud voice? Why, of all things, he has the nerve to demand a dead man, now already stinking, come out of his grave. Of all things, whoever heard of such?
How can this be? Are we seeing things? Lazarus is standing before the healer, still bound in his grave clothes. Jesus is giving someone instructions to unwrap them. There stands Lazarus, alive and well, embracing his good friend Jesus and looking lovingly into his eyes. The whispers could be heard, “Why, this man Jesus even has power over the grave! He was not crying because Lazarus was dead after all, was he? I think he was crying because we were lacking in faith and did not trust him. This is more than a mere man. Oh, it is clear now why Jesus cried.”
Jesus wept. John 11:35. Read the whole account in John 11:1-46.
There were other times we find in the Holy Scriptures that Jesus cried. I will share those in writings to follow.
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I would like to add this comment on what I wrote here. Another reason I think Jesus cried was because He knew death came because of the sins of man, and I think He was saddened that man had brought upon himself all the suffering, pain, and sorrow. If people will only come to Him, they will have a life free of all that one day, in Heaven. It surely saddens Jesus that there are many who still reject what is free, paid for by His personal sacrifice.
I had another take on this--looking at the fact that He was in human form and His tears was the manifestation of the pain He felt from seeing His friends grieving and also of Him losing His friend Lazarus. This one was a lesson for me--there's always something new each time you dig into the word. Your article caused me to think about the lack of trust we sometimes display and how painful it is for Christ when we do that. Thanks for the lesson.
GREAT PIECE THOMAS AND YOU ARE EXACTLY RIGHT!!! Jesus cried because of their lack of faith. Jesus stood there being the way, the truth and the LIFE!! How long had they been with Jesus and still did not know him???!!! How many times have we disappointed him for the same thing??!!! Bless you Thomas for this piece of written truth!!!
Well written Thomas...God bless you...Amen.
Thomas, I just finished commenting on this story and when I pushed the submit it all went away. So here I go again--not said the way I said it the first time...I love the way you told this story. It is one of my favourite stories. It brings out Jesus' "human-ness" in the recording of His weeping. And it brings out His "God-ness" in His raising His friend from the dead...Very well told...You used your God-given imagination to make this story fresh...I loved it!...Helen
It is good to put some meat on the Word to give it more definition for us to see. God Bless