v. 28 Jesus calls for Mary to come from the place of mourning to where He is. He knows that he couldn‚Äôt talk to her in that setting-esp. with professional mourners there. A lot of times God has something to tell us about a situation, but as long as we‚Äôre surrounded by people that don‚Äôt listen to Him, or in a place that keeps the situation out of His control, (as in not the place He wants to work, no place is OUT of His control) He will call us out and move us geographically to show us more of Himself.
v.33, 35 Jesus is moved and weeps and mourns right along with them. Sometimes this is a stumbling block because why would Jesus cry if He knows that He is about to raise Lazarus from the dead? I can think of several reasons why He would cry that are all in keeping with His character
–ê the obvious: that He loved Lazarus and was sad that he had died. I don‚Äôt think Jesus knew the whole future-He just knew what the Father told Him, so He may NOT know He‚Äôs about to raise Him or He‚Äôs sad because He knows how Lazarus must have suffered before he eventually died
–ë He cried because He was so sad for the pain that Mary and Martha had gone through. He loved them a lot and to see them in such pain as to say ‚ÄúIf you would have been here, Jesus!‚Äù would break His heart too.
–í He wanted to care and identify with them. Even though He knew Lazarus would be alive in the next 30 minutes, He didn‚Äôt want to be harsh and show joy while Mary is falling at His feet weeping. If you‚Äôve ever been on either side of a conversation where one person had great zeal/passion/emotion about something, and the other person didn‚Äôt go there with you, you can really feel like a fool. Jesus didn‚Äôt make Mary or Martha feel like a fool for weeping. He wept right along with them, then went to the tomb and turned their mourning into dancing and probably danced right along with them
–ì Last for me, but I‚Äôm sure there are more, is that Jesus was weeping over all death. The sadness that Man had turned against the Father and brought death upon Himself for all generations would also tear Jesus up. Eventually Jesus would painfully give His own life in order to reverse the effects of The Fall of Man, one of which was death. So the process of death, the effects, and the eventual healing/beating/swallowing up of death would all make Jesus weep too.
Every one of these angles tells us something amazing about God. He IS sympathetic and caring to us. He takes our lives seriously and watches and involves Himself in them.
v.34 ‚Äúwhere have you laid him?‚Äù Jesus wants to go to the place where He is going to work. He could have easily raised Lazarus from the dead from the other side of the Jordan, but I think Jesus‚Äô presence with M&M and the Jewish leaders is important to Him. Also, because Lazarus comes out at Jesus‚Äô command, there is no question that Lazarus came out because of Jesus. There are many times that I see something happen that is a real lifesaver, and I know people were praying for it, and I just wonder if I shouldn‚Äôt have prayed for it out loud so that onlookers could hear and know that this thing happened because God intervened. I‚Äôm still learning about that.
God wants to show Himself. He wants to show that things don‚Äôt ‚Äòjust happen‚Äô but that He has a hand in the events of Man. He wants to show off the power and authority of The Son, and in the midst of all of that, He wants to do it in our proximity, not from some lofty high place far away. God wants to be there as we mourn, carry us through it (or just walk through with us) and then show His power and glory to rule every aspect of the entire world.