Most of us know that the shortest sentence in the Bible is, Jesus wept.
Here’s a brief overview of the scene, in which those words are uttered. Jesus knows that his friend Lazarus, is ill. Jesus waits in another town, deliberately knowing that his tarrying will result in the death of Lazarus. He explains this to his disciples who are wondering why Jesus doesn’t go to Lazarus, why he is stalling. There is also a warning, by some of the disciples, that if Jesus goes to Lazarus he will be killed by the religious rulers who are seeking his death. After three days Jesus sets out to see Lazarus and as he does he makes it very clear to his disciples that Lazarus is dead. His disciples, at this point, must be wondering what is going on!
When he arrives Lazarus’ sisters, Martha and Mary show him where Lazarus is buried and admit that if Jesus had been there Lazarus would have been alive, even now. They have faith in Jesus. They believe, and know, by seeing Him do other miracles, that if Jesus had been there, their brother would not have died.
Here’s where the story gets so pregnant with meaning that it is of huge cosmic proportions! Jesus comes to the tomb and He weeps. I believe that His weeping is not only for Lazarus, but for the state of man ever since man’s rightful place was usurped by the evil one, Satan. Jesus knows that death was never supposed to be part of the plan, but because sin entered the human race, at the garden, it set in motion a series of events that resulted in death, disease, and the total depravity of the human race.
Jesus, as a man, feels the sting of death, as it is his friend Lazarus that is lying dead in the tomb. As God, he knows that the cross is waiting for him and it is by the ordeal, which he will suffer on it, that in the end will set all mankind free, and eventually will restore us to our original state. Things have gotten horribly out of hand and He knows that this is why He is here, to become our ransom….
Jesus weeps, because of how far man has fallen. He knows that this world is under the control of the evil one, Satan. He even tells us this, by calling Satan, the Prince of this world. I believe that He weeps for all mankind from Adam until the end of the age, when He will come again, and history as we know it shall cease, and the rightful King will rule.
He knows of the horrors that will come as the evil one will continue to rob, kill, and destroy, as he roams about as a roaring lion. He sees the millions of people who will die in wars, of disease, of hunger, from slavery, from concentration camps. He sees it all and He weeps.
Death claims us all at some point. No matter how we try to cheat it, it eventually is our fate. Yet, we know that when He comes again, He will put away death, it will be no more. Mankind will be restored, we will be in our original state as was intended from the beginning.
Some will ask, where is the promise of His coming? Some people think that it’s all a fairy tale. To the spirit-filled man or woman, the second coming is our blessed hope. We are told that; the dead in Christ shall rise first and then those of us who are alive will rise and meet the Lord in the air! It is why we are told that all of creation groans! At some point, and I believe it may be sooner than we think, the King will return, and we will rise to meet Him! We will be set free at last. Free from our sin nature. Free from death. Free at last….