The Raising Of Lazurus: Summary, Timeline, And Analysis

Jesus performed a miracle by raising Lazarus. The Gospel of John is the only gospel that mentions the raising of Lazarus, not unlike the miracle that turned water into wine at Cana’s wedding. Four days after Lazarus was ensconced, Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead in a miracle.

lazurus raised from the dead

Raising Lazarus: Summary

John 11, verses 1 through 44, is the only account of Jesus raising Lazarus from his grave.

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John tells us about a sick man named Lazarus from Bethany. Lazarus, the brother of Mary Magdalene, is often identified as Lazarus. Mary and Martha sent Jesus to help their brother, who Jesus loved as much as Mary and Martha.

Jesus didn’t hurry to Bethany to assist Lazarus, but he remained there for two more days. Only then did he go back to Judea with his disciples. They tried to warn him against such an action and reminded him that Jews had attempted to stone him to death. Jesus replied cryptically, saying that those who walk daily see the light while those who walk at night stumble due to ‘no light’.

He then went to Bethany to wake Lazarus up from his sleep of death.

Then it became apparent that Jesus delayed going to Lazarus because he wanted Lazarus to be dead so that he (Jesus), could prove his divinity once and for all.

They found Lazarus dead for four days when they reached Bethany’s outskirts. {Martha, who had come out to meet them, told Jesus that if he had got there sooner, she knew he would have healed Lazarus.|Martha had come to see them and told Jesus that if Jesus had arrived sooner, he would have healed Lazarus. She also believed that God would grant Lazarus his restoration if he asked.

Jesus declared, “I am the resurrection and the life: He that believeth in my name, even though he is dead, shall live” (John 11:25). In other words, believers in God will continue to live forever in heaven even after their mortal lives are over. Martha said to Jesus that she believed he is the Son of God. Mary then called Mary out to join them.

Mary fell at Jesus‘ feet when she saw him, and she said what Martha had just said: If he had been there when Lazarus was alive, she would have been able to save him. Jesus asked them where Lazarus was buried, and he wept when they revealed it. This section of the Lazarus story has the shortest verse in the Bible. John 11:35 is only two words: “Jesus wept.”

The onlookers could see how much Jesus loved Lazarus and knew he could have saved him. Jesus groaned as Jesus walked closer to the grave. It was a cave with an open stone. Jesus instructed them to remove the stone, but Martha said it had been four days since Lazarus‘ death and that his body would smell.

Jesus instructed her to believe in God’s glory. So they removed the stone from the cave, and Jesus raised his eyes to heaven to pray to God. Jesus called for Lazarus‘s release from the grave. “He that was dead” (John 11:44) saw Lazarus, bound in his funeral clothes, rise from his grave again, alive.

lazurus raised

Raising Of Lazurus Timeline

Lazarus is dead – Family members concerned send for Jesus

Martha and Mary, in John 11:1, sent a messenger to Jesus asking for His help to heal Lazarus (v 3). Jesus left Bethany two days after the messenger had given him the message. Jesus knew that Lazarus wouldn’t die because the delay was not caused by Lazarus dying. He also knew that Jesus was omniscient.

He tells His disciples that his friend Lazarus is asleep and that he will wake him up (v 10). His disciples believed that sleeping would help him heal from illness. They told him, “Lord, he can fall asleep if he is sick” (v 12). Jesus meant to say that he had died, and He tells them plainly that Lazarus has died (v 14). Next, He said, “…for your sake, so that your faith may be strengthened” (v 15). Thomas’s loyalty to Lazarus and his pessimism is displayed when he tells his disciples and Jesus, “Let us also travel, that we might die with him.” (v 16).

The Master arrives later than expected.

Lazarus was already dead for four days when Jesus arrived. Jesus discovered that many of the Jews were mourning Martha and Mary. Martha met Jesus and said to Him, “Lord Jesus, if I had been there, my brother wouldn’t have died.” But I am certain that God will grant you whatever you ask (v 21-22). Martha believed that Jesus meant the resurrection of Lazarus, but Jesus said that Lazarus would be raised again. Mary ran to Jesus‘ home to see Him, and Mary repeated Martha’s words, “Lord, if You Had Been Here, My Brother Would Not Have Died” (v 32).

The Master is moved to tears.

Jesus saw Mary and the Jews weeping for Lazarus, and he was “deeply affected in His spirit” (v 33). This was the same language in which the Lord spoke to the disciples at Passover and was aware of His imminent betrayal. This means He was angry, outraged, or felt indignation. Their pessimism, or belief that He could raise Lazarus the dead, may have contributed to this behavior. While He knew that grief is a normal human emotion, He also saw their unbelieving ways. Jesus wept with them (v 35). They saw Jesus weeping with them and ridiculed Jesus’s inability to stop him from dying. (v 37). Jesus knew their thoughts, which could explain their anger at His skepticism regarding raising Lazarus or their willingness to reveal their unbelief.

Another reason Jesus might have wept is that Jesus knew Lazarus was with the Father in heaven and that it caused Jesus to grieve not being there in person. It could also have been possible that Lazarus was already in Paradise, so he would not need to face death again. Lazarus had to leave heaven to go back to this world. Would anyone want to return to this earth if they were in heaven?

Then again, could it not have been that Jesus felt the human grief of losing a friend?

The Miracle

Jesus was still “deeply moved” and ordered them to remove the stone. Lazarus‘ sister, Martha, told Jesus, “Lord! There is a bad smell because he has been there for four days.” (v 39). Jesus insists and when the stone is rolled away, Jesus lifts His eyes towards heaven and says, “Father, I thank you for hearing me.” Although I knew you would always hear me, I stated this to ensure that the people around me believed that you sent me (v 41-42). This could be why Jesus waited four days before arriving at Lazarus. He wanted to prove that He is the resurrection, truth, and life (John 14:6). He is God and has the power to live and die.

Jesus shouted, “Lazarus come out” (v 43). It is possible that he almost screamed it, as “cried out” indicates that He spoke at the top of his lungs so that all could hear Him and understand His commands. Lazarus was dead for four days before he came out, wrapped in his burial cloth. Jesus instructed them to remove the wrapping and allow him to go. This is positive proof that Jesus can raise the dead. Dozens of witnesses witnessed it. There was no doubt that Lazarus had died and was beyond recovery. Only God could have raised him to life.

Jesus‘ commandments to rise and live again have a powerful effectual power. He said to them that He was the resurrection and the life. “The one who believes in my name will live, even if they die” (v 25). Even if Jesus didn’t mention Lazarus by name or specifically call out “Lazarus,” everyone in their graves would have risen to life because Jesus is God’s power. One day He will shout, “come forward,” and all those still in graves but asleep in Jesus will rise again — some to eternal judgment and some to eternal life (Dan 12). My prayer is that you will again rise to eternal life at the great day when we all have to account for our lives. Your name will be in the book of life (Rev. 20:-12-15). Jesus will defeat death at that point (Rev. 20:14).

lazurus resurrected from the deat

Raising Lazarus: Analysis

John mentions the raising of Lazarus as the final miracle or sign of Jesus‘ divinity. It is the culmination of Jesus‘ divinity. It represents his ability to conquer death by bringing back the dead to life. The miracle is placed in John’s account of Jesus‘ life, suggesting that it was meant to complement and go hand-in-hand with Jesus‘ imminent death. Knowing he will die, he has returned to Bethany to bring Lazarus back to life. He will be arrested shortly after and executed.

Jesus’s raising of Lazarus is also a prelude to Jesus‘ triumph over death through his resurrection three days after the Crucifixion. It is the last miracle he will perform during this lifetime. The stone rolling out of the tomb parallels Jesus‘ resurrection of his friend.

Who was Lazarus? Lazarus was also known as “Lazarus of Bethany.” Bethany is now Al-Eizariya on the West Bank. This translates to “the place of Lazarus.” Lazarus was famous after Jesus brought him back to life. There are two Lazaruses in the New Testament.

It appears that they were different people. Luke (16) recounts Jesus‘ parable about the rich man and Lazarus. But this Lazarus (a poor person) isn’t the one Jesus raised from the grave. John is the only one to mention the story of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead.

There are examples in the Gospels of Jesus raising the dead, regardless of its truth. Luke 7:14-15 shows Jesus raising the dead son from a widow. John’s ‘And the one who was dead rose’ echoes Luke’s words. This event is not as detailed as John’s Lazarus story, and Luke’s version of it takes place much earlier in Jesus’ life. John clearly understood the Lazarus incident as Jesus‘ last great act of divinity before his arrest and crucifixion.


the raising of Lazurus

In conclusion, the story of Lazarus being raised from the dead is inspirational. It reminds us that hope is never lost even in the darkest times. Hope is what keeps us going, even when all seems lost. So never give up hope because miracles can and do happen.

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