Our student life group, Get Real, is reading through the book of John. A few Sunday nights ago we were discussing the shortest verse in the bible. Anyone know what it is? Going once…twice…yep, that’s it, “Jesus wept.” It’s in John 11 verse 35 in the middle of the Lazarus story. Anyone who is a student of the word or has spent any amount of time in church has probably heard or read this story no less than 1000 times. I am sure their are dissertations and pages and pages of exegetical analysis, but I want to take a few minutes and bring to light some things we discussed about this short, little verse.
Obviously, we discussed Jesus compassion for those he loved and was close to. The verses preluding this one is Jesus talking to Mary, Martha, and other Jews that were there. He loved the folks passionately and seeing them hurt for the loss had to hurt Him as well.
Then, we took the discussion a little farther. We can see before Jesus gets into town Martha runs to him and falls to the ground and says, “IF you were here, my brother wouldn’t have died!” After that, in runs Mary saying, “IF!” Then we hear the Jews saying, “IF!”
“IF you would’ve been here.” “IF you would’ve came sooner.” “IF” “IF” “IF”
Could it have been that Jesus wept because of their lack of faith in Him to make the right decision? I mean, we are talking about the Mary and Martha that were friends with Jesus. The same people who had heard of all the miracles that had been performed at the hands of Jesus.
So, all this being said, we now from previously in chapter 11 that Jesus waited 2 days before going to Lazarus after He heard of his condition. Could it have been that Jesus was only known for laying hands on the sick and healing them and that he had a different plan in mind? Did He want to show that he can do anything, no matter the circumstance? Did he wait to simply build their faith?
Why do you think Jesus wept? Out of compassion? Or lack of faith?