Recently I’ve been studying John 10-12 to prepare for a teaching opportunity. Studying a passage of scripture is very different from just casually reading it. As we engage with the text we are studying, it will at times raise good questions for us. In John 11, we read about the well-known story of Jesus raising his friend Lazarus from the dead, the miracle that will eventually lead to the cross.
If you remember the story, we are told that Lazarus was ill. His sisters, Mary and Martha, send a message to Jesus that ‘he whom you love is ill’. You might think that Jesus will immediately head to Bethany when he got that news (although He didn’t need to go to Bethany to heal him). However, when Jesus received the message, He stated “This illness does not lead to death. It is for the glory of God, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.” (John 11:4). He then stayed where he was two days longer. Jesus was not in Bethany before Lazarus died so that his disciples might believe. He knew that he would raise Lazarus, resulting in his disciples seeing his power made manifest, and they be strengthened in their faith. God would bring good out of the agony of Lazarus’ death. Continue reading