This is the turning point for Jesus. After this read, there is no turning back. This is the 7th sign in John: Jesus had presented Himself as the Water of Life, the Bread of Life, and the Light of Life. Now He revealed Himself as “the Resurrection and the Life.” This was the seventh and last of Jesus’ miraculous signs that John recorded, and it was the most powerful revelation of His true identity. It shows Jesus’ authority over humankind’s greatest and last enemy: Death.
Jesus said, “This sickness will not end in death. No, it is for God’s glory so that God’s Son may be glorified through it.”
Then Jesus purposely waits 2 more days. Jesus has brought others back from death but this time there will be no mistaking it.
Jesus makes sure his disciples truly understand the situation at hand:
14 So then he told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead, 15 and for your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.”
The sign will be the clearest demonstration of Jesus’ identity so far and would convince many people that He was God’s Son.
23 Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.”
24 Martha answered, “I know he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.”
25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; 26 and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?”
Ok, we already know that Martha believes in a resurrection, but that is not what Jesus is asking. He is saying “I AM the resurrection.” It is about believing in WHO Jesus is. Without Jesus, there is never a resurrection.
37 But some of them said, “Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from dying?”
Many believed the one that healed the blind could have kept Lazarus from dying (maybe that was there an assumption of the daughter of Jarius or the son of the widow from Nain that he brought back to life since they were just newly dead). This will be “proof”.
Then Jesus speaks out loud. He doesn’t have to. He gives a profound message:
41 So they took away the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. 42 I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me.”
and it worked!! Many saw who He was and who HIs Father was…good news. Many believed.
We said in the overview the theme of the Book of John is to “Believe”. He uses that word 98 times.
45 Therefore many of the Jews who had come to visit Mary, and had seen what Jesus did, believed in him.
Sadly, it said many…not all.
Then the chief priests and the Pharisees called a meeting of the Sanhedrin. (The chief priests were the Sadducees). Typically they hated each other…but they came together because they hated Jesus equally. Caiaphas was the son-in-law of the former High Priest. Dig into your memory bank: a high priest held their position for life and then it was passed down to their heir. Here is the deal, Caiaphas was placed as the high priest by the Sadducees as a political figurehead. (They still consulted his father-in-law, Annas who was in the good ole’ boy club.
Caiaphas basically says “let Jesus die. When Rome hears about this ruckus, they are either going to kill him or us…let it be him!” As long as the Jews did not cause trouble, Rome left them alone. (They were concerned about their status and their $$)
Finally….we are headed to Jerusalem for “The Passover”. Time is coming.
55 When it was almost time for the Jewish Passover, many went up from the country to Jerusalem for their ceremonial cleansing before the Passover.56 They kept looking for Jesus, and as they stood in the temple courts they asked one another, “What do you think? Isn’t he coming to the festival at all?” 57 But the chief priests and the Pharisees had given orders that anyone who found out where Jesus was should report it so that they might arrest him.