Yes, we all know the story of Lazarus.  Yep, that’s right, Jesus raised him from the dead.  But, do you KNOW THE REAL STORY?  As Paul Harvey used to say, now for the rest of the story.
  Jesus raising Lazarus is in John 11 so let’s read it.  If you want to hear it click here at Audio John 11.  Okay, Mary, Martha, and Lazarus lived in Bethany, which was about 2 miles from Jerusalem. Jesus had been threatened here so they were close to danger, but far enough away to not attract attention.
  Now Lazarus’ sisters, Mary and Martha, sent word to Jesus that Lazarus was ill. The Bible makes it clear who this is, it was Mary who anointed Jesus’ feet.  When Jesus heard the news he said (verse 4) that Lazarus was not sick unto death but for the glory of God. Quote of Jesus:  This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby.
  Once he heard the news he stayed where he was for 2 more days.  Why do you think he did not just get up and go?  Notice above, sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God.  If Jesus rushed right in and healed Lazarus it may have been what all expected. But, Jesus is waiting.
   Then He tells his disciples, after 2 days, let’s go to Judea, and they plead NO, as it was too dangerous.  So how does Jesus respond?  In verses 9/10 Jesus says, ” Are there not twelve hours in the day? If any man walk in the day, he stumbleth not, because he seeth the light of this world.
10 But if a man walk in the night, he stumbleth, because there is no light in him.
What does this mean?  Well, to me, daylight is a symbol of the knowledge of God’s will and for us to rely on HIS guidance; whereas night is the absence of knowledge and being self reliant.
   Then Jesus says Lazarus sleeps and he must go wake him.  The disciples do not understand and respond that if Lazarus sleeps then he is going to be well.  Then Jesus plainly said:  Lazarus is dead!  and then HE said: 15 And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, to the intent ye may believe; nevertheless let us go unto him.
  Thomas, nicknamed Didymus (which means Twin) say let’s go with Him.  Jesus could have healed him, but by waiting until Lazarus is dead Jesus can show HIS power over death. This is for the disciples and others to better understand who Jesus really is.
   They knew they may be danger here but they were loyal to Jesus.  We must remember that often there are unknown dangers in doing God’s work.  We, here in the USA don’t usually experience bodily danger, but we do experience danger in God’s work and HIS word.  Example: abortion, then abortion in New York where full term babies can be killed.
   To get to Lazarus they would have to go 15 furlongs (a furlong is about 1/8 of a mile, so about 2 miles).  Lots of people were there comforting Mary and Martha. When Martha heard Jesus was coming she rushed to meet him.  Basically she said Lord, if you had been here my brother would still be alive.  Jesus’ response: Thy brother shall rise again.  Martha replies she knows in the last days he will rise.
    Jesus says,  ”

I am the resurrection, and the life:
he that believeth in me, though he were dead,
yet shall he live:
26 And whosoever liveth and
believeth in me shall never die.
Believest thou this?

Martha has deep faith and she responds as Jesus would want us all to respond.  Yea, Lord: I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world. 

   She left and told her sister Mary, secretly, that Jesus was coming.  So, here we go  again.  Mary gets up and leaves, the people mourning with her thought she was going to the tomb of Lazarus and followed her.  What comes next is very emotional and teaches us that we have a God who cares, really cares.
    32 Then when Mary was come where Jesus was, and saw him, she fell down at his feet, saying unto him, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died.
  When Jesus saw Mary and the people with her HE groaned, twice verse 33 and again in verse 38 when HE knew what the people were thinking and saying.  However, verse 35 shows true compassion and love from our saviour as it says, “JESUS WEPT
   Through these passages we see Jesus’ emotion – compassion, sorrow, even frustration.  Jesus showed HIS deep emotions, and we, too, must not be afraid to show our true feelings to him. 
     Okay, as we proceed on.  Lazarus has been dead for 4 days.  This ensures the person is truly dead and beginning to smell.  Tombs were usually caves and the reason for the stone is to stop the odor from coming out.
   Jesus goes to the tomb and says take away the stone.  Martha says but if we do it is going to stink to high heavens.  Jesus says:  Said I not unto thee, that, if thou wouldest believe, thou shouldest see the glory of God?
   They rolled the stone away, Jesus lifted HIS eyes to heaven and said, Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me.
42 And I knew that thou hearest me always: but because of the people which stand by I said it, that they may believe that thou hast sent me.
43 And when he thus had spoken, he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth.
  Now here is what is hard to understand.  Even when seeing the power of Jesus’ deity, some refused to believe.  These eye-witnesses not only rejected Jesus, they plotted his murder (read on 45-57).  they were so hardened that they preferred to reject God’s Son rather than admit that they were wrong.  We need to beware of pride, if it grows we can be lead into awful sin.
   You will run into this daily.  Be strong in the word and let God give you the guidance, relying on GOD, rather than self-reliance.  Thanks for reading.