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TO THE RETURN OF THE TWELVE.
RAISING OF LAZARUS.
JOHN XI. 1. 17. Now a certain man was sick, named Lazarus, of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha. (It was that Mary which anointed the Lord with ointment, and wiped his feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick)—Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus. When he had heard therefore that he was sick, he abode two days still in the same place where he was. Then after that, saith he to his disciples, Let us go into Judea again. Then when Jesus came, he found that he had lain in the grave four days already. Now Bethany was nigh unto Jerusalem, about fifteen furlongs off; and many of the Jews came to Martha and Mary, to comfort them concerning their brother. Then Martha, as soon as she heard that Jesus was coming, went and met him ; but Mary sat still in the house. Then said Martha unto Jesus, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died; but I know that even now, whatsoever thou wilt ask of God, God will give it
thee. Jesus saith unto her, Thy brother shall rise again. Martha saith unto him, I know that he shall rise again, in the resurrection, at the last day. Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection and the life ; he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live ; and whosoever liveth and believeth in me, shall never die. Believest thou this? She saith unto him ; Yea, Lord; I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world. And when she had so said, she went her way, and called Mary her sister secretly, saying, The Master is come, and calleth for thee. As soon as she heard that, she arose quickly, and came unto him. (Now Jesus was not yet come into the town ; but was in that place where Martha met him.) The Jews then which were with 'her in the house, and comforted her, when they saw Mary, that she rose up hastily, and went out, followed her saying, She goeth unto the
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 therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews also weeping which came with her, he groaned in the spirit, and was troubled ; and said, Where have ye laid him? They say unto him, Lord, come and see. Jesus wept. Then said the Jews, Behold, how he loved him! And some of them said, Could not this man, which opened the eyes of the blind, have caused that even this man should not have died ? Jesus therefore, again groaning in himself, cometh to the grave. It was a cave, and a stone lay upon it. Jesus said, Take ye away the stone. Then they took away the stone. And Jesus lift up his eyes,
and said, Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me. 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. And when he thus had spoken, he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth. He that was dead came forth, bound hand and foot with grave-clothes ; and his face was bound about with a napkin. Jesus saith unto them, Loose him, and let him go. Then many of the Jews which came to Mary, and had seen the things which he did, believed on him. But some of them went their ways to the Pharisees, and told them what things Jesus had done.
The feelings of sympathy and affection, sacred in themselves, are sanctioned by the religion of Jesus. It may be difficult, and it can be but of little use, to say what train of thoughts passed through the bosom of our Lord, and to account curiously for his shedding tears for an event which he was about to reverse. It is enough for us that he was by a friend's grave, with others weeping around him; and when the fountain of tears, thrilled by whatever secret impulse, burst forth, we acknowledge there our Saviour, in all the loveliness of human feeling, but untainted with human sinfulness; the model to which every emotion, and every thought should be conformed, as he was conformed to the will of his heavenly Father.
Many, we are told, of those who came with Mary, believed on him; and well might they yield their faith, when they saw the tenant of the tomb for four days, come forth, a living man. But for us it is sufficient to pause where Jesus paused and wept. Powerful as was the evidence afforded by the raising of the dead to life, the evidence of those holy tears speaks more impressively. Tears are the language of
truth. An impostor never wept, at the moment of perpetrating a deception.
“ See how he loved !” exclaimed the Jews,
MARK, III. 19. And they went into a house. And the multitude cometh together again, so that they could not so much as eat bread. And when his friends heard of it, they went out to lay hold on him ; for they said, He is beside himself. And the scribes, which came down from Jerusalem, said, He hath Beelzebub ; and, By the prince of the devils casteth he out devils. And he called them unto him, and said unto them in parables, How can Satan cast out Satan? And if a kingdom be divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand ; and if a house be divided against itself, that house cannot stand ; and if Satan rise up against himself, and be divided, he cannot stand, but hath an end. No man can enter into a strong man's house, and spoil his goods, except he will first bind the strong man, and then he will spoil his house. Verily I say unto you, all sins shall be forgiven unto the sons of men, and the blasphemies wherewith soever they shall blaspheme; but he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost, hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal damnation. Because they said, He hath an unclean spirit.
There came then his mother and his brethren ; and standing without, sent unto him, calling him. And the multitude sat about him; and they said unto him, Behold, hy mother and thy brethren without, seek for thee. And he answered them, saying, Who is my mother, or