Books of the Book: John

Mary, Martha & Lazarus

Three Angels Broadcasting Network

Program transcript

Participants: Deyvy Rodriguez & Jon Paulien


Series Code: JBOTB

Program Code: JBOTB00016B

00:01 Well, welcome back to this program "Books of the Book."
00:03 And we are with Dr. Jon Pauline.
00:06 Dr. Pauline, we said we would get back to Lazarus,
00:09 so is there something else to say on Lazarus?
00:12 Well, I want to remind us that in the Gospel of John
00:15 the stories are acted parables.
00:18 They represent something,
00:21 some theological teaching that's elsewhere in the book.
00:24 And the theological teaching that's represented here
00:27 is actually found in John 5:28-29.
00:31 So Jesus is acting out what He will do there.
00:34 Why don't you read John 5:28-29?
00:39 "Do not marvel at this for the hour is coming,
00:42 in the which all who are in the graves
00:45 will hear his voice, and come forth
00:47 those who have done good to the resurrection of life
00:50 and those who have done evil
00:52 to the resurrection of condemnation."
00:55 So here in the Lazarus story, Jesus is acting out
00:58 what He'll do at the end of time
01:01 when He raises the dead. Okay.
01:03 At His second coming
01:04 and then ultimately after the millennium as well.
01:08 Let's talk about now Lazarus' sisters.
01:12 Yeah, that's-- Mary and Martha.
01:13 That's very interesting, Lazarus' sisters
01:16 because we tend to see the sisters
01:19 in the light of Luke 10.
01:21 We don't think of them so much in the light of John 11.
01:25 Why don't we go to Luke 10:38-42.
01:30 So Chapter 10 and verses 38."
01:33 Now it happened as they went,
01:35 that he entered a certain village
01:37 and a certain woman named Martha
01:39 welcomed him into her house.
01:41 And she had a sister called Mary,
01:43 who also sat at Jesus' feet, and heard his word.
01:47 But Martha was distracted with much serving,
01:50 and she approached him, and said, Lord,
01:52 do not care that my sister has left me to serve alone?
01:56 Therefore tell her to help me.
01:58 And Jesus answered and said unto her,
02:00 Martha, Martha, you are worried
02:02 and troubled about many things
02:05 but one thing is needed.
02:06 And Mary has chosen that good part,
02:09 which will not be taken away from her."
02:12 This is the lens I think
02:14 through which most of us look at the sisters.
02:16 You know, Martha is kind of task oriented,
02:19 she is into the cooking and cleaning and all that.
02:22 Mary on the other hand wants to go deep with Jesus.
02:25 She wants to be with Him,
02:27 she wants to hear Him and so on.
02:29 And if in fact she is the woman
02:32 of a couple chapters before in Luke
02:35 that was the sinner who washed his feet
02:37 with her hair and so forth.
02:40 Then you could see that she would be
02:41 in love with the man who truly changed her heart
02:44 and gave her a new life.
02:46 But John 11 looks at the sisters
02:49 with a little bit different lens.
02:51 You know, people are complex.
02:53 And they are not always you know,
02:55 you get a glimpse of them that's not the whole person.
02:58 Let's get a closer glimpse
02:59 of these two sisters in Chapter 11.
03:02 And we're gonna start in verses 20 to 22.
03:05 John 11:20-22.
03:07 "Now Martha, as soon as she heard
03:09 that Jesus was coming, went and met him.
03:12 But Mary was sitting in the house.
03:15 Now Martha said to Jesus,
03:16 Lord, if you had been here, my brother would have not died.
03:21 But even now I know that whatever you ask of God,
03:24 God will give you."
03:26 Now Jesus, when He arrives,
03:27 He doesn't actually come into town,
03:29 He stays in a park just at the edge of town.
03:33 And word comes to the sisters
03:35 that Jesus is coming, He is in the park out there.
03:39 Martha Jumps up and runs out to Jesus
03:43 and she just yell, if only You would had been here,
03:46 Lazarus wouldn't have died.
03:48 But even in that complaint, she expresses--
03:50 she says, well I know even now
03:53 God will give you whatever you ask.
03:55 So it's interesting Mary doesn't go,
03:58 Martha does go.
04:00 And it raises the question,
04:03 is Mary more fragile personality?
04:08 Does she--is she hurt, that Jesus delays.
04:11 I don't want to talk to, you know.
04:14 She may be uncertain how He feels about her,
04:17 that He didn't respond the way that she expected.
04:21 So Martha expresses some disappointment
04:23 but she also expresses faith.
04:25 And then go to verses 23 and 24.
04:28 "Jesus said to her, your brother will rise again.
04:32 Martha said to him, I know that he will rise again
04:35 in the resurrection at the last day."
04:38 And then here is the thing, in verse 25 to 27,
04:43 Jesus gives the most glorious expression
04:45 of resurrection in the whole Bible
04:47 and Martha draws that out from Him. Now read it.
04:50 "Jesus said to her, I am the resurrection, and the life.
04:54 He who believes in me,
04:55 though he may die, he shall live.
04:58 And whoever lives and believes in me shall never die.
05:01 Do you believe this?
05:03 She said to him, Yes, Lord,
05:04 I believe that you are the Christ,
05:06 the Son of God, who has to come into the world."
05:10 Her statement is the most glorious expression
05:14 of exactly what Jesus wants.
05:16 You are the Messiah, you are the Son of God.
05:19 You are the one who has to come into the world.
05:22 Now Thomas actually exceeds that in Chapter 20.
05:25 So called Doubting Thomas,
05:27 when he says, my Lord and my God, you know.
05:29 But that is drawn out by seeing.
05:33 Martha makes the statement without seeing,
05:35 Lazarus hasn't been raised from the dead.
05:37 The future resurrection isn't there to be inspected.
05:41 Jesus says, I am the resurrection and the life,
05:43 and she says, yep, I get it.
05:46 I know who you are.
05:48 So Martha becomes representative of the second generation
05:52 who believes without seeing.
05:54 And that makes this very special and glorious story.
05:59 She represents mature faith and discipleship.
06:03 What about Mary?
06:04 Let's bring Mary back into the story, verse 28.
06:09 "And when she had said these things,
06:12 she went away, and secretly called Mary
06:14 her sister saying, that Teacher has come
06:17 and is calling for you." Continue.
06:20 "As soon as she heard that,
06:22 she arose quickly, and came to him.
06:24 Now Jesus had not yet come into the town,
06:26 but was in the place where Martha had met him.
06:29 Then the Jews who were with her
06:32 in the house, and comforting her,
06:34 when they saw that Mary rose up and quickly went out,
06:38 followed her, saying,
06:39 She going to the tomb to weep there.
06:42 Then when Mary come where Jesus was,
06:44 and saw him, she fell down at his feet,
06:46 saying to him, Lord, if you had been here,
06:49 my brother would have not died."
06:52 Now she says the same thing as Martha said.
06:53 The same thing. Yeah.
06:55 Now you notice Martha
06:56 specially calls as the Lord is asking for you.
06:59 And that suggest to me that maybe Mary was doubting
07:03 whether Jesus really would except her.
07:05 Yeah, He didn't come for my brother,
07:07 you know, may be He doesn't want to see me either.
07:10 And I would see Mary
07:11 as something of a fragile personality
07:13 especially if this Mary is the same as Mary Magdalene
07:18 and something even the woman taken into adultery.
07:21 If she has this kind of checkered history
07:24 then she's still somebody whose emotions
07:27 are all over the map and fragile and so.
07:30 And that's the kind of person we see here.
07:32 Like Martha, she expresses some doubt,
07:35 but unlike Martha she expresses no faith.
07:38 And Jesus presence doesn't draw out faith from her.
07:43 So let's continue verse 33."
07:47 Therefore when Jesus saw her weeping,
07:49 and the Jews who came with her weeping,
07:51 he groaned in the spirit, and was troubled."
07:55 It doesn't just say that He was crying with them
08:00 but He was troubled.
08:02 In other words, there was something
08:03 very disturbing in the situation.
08:06 Didn't happened when Martha came
08:08 but it happened when Mary came.
08:11 So continue through verse 38.
08:14 "And He said, where have you laid him?
08:17 They said to him, Lord, come and see. Jesus wept.
08:21 Then the Jews said, see how he loved him.
08:24 And some of them said, could not this man,
08:26 who opened the eyes of the blind,
08:28 also have kept this man from dying.
08:31 Then Jesus again groaning in himself came to the tomb.
08:34 It was a cave, and a stone lay against it."
08:39 So here you'll see-- What was He troubled about?
08:42 Well, the one-- the two things that are obvious
08:45 of the statements first from Mary.
08:48 You know, if you would been here,
08:49 my brother wouldn't have died.
08:50 Unlike Martha it almost comes across as an accusation,
08:53 cause there is no faith that comes with it.
08:55 There's no positive in that statement
08:58 and so He's troubled there, He weeps.
09:00 And then people say-- what was in verse 37,
09:04 could not the one who opened the eyes of the blind
09:06 have kept this man from dying.
09:09 And that is not grasping the fact
09:12 that Jesus is truly who He claims to be, as God.
09:16 Death is not the end of the story.
09:19 So they are expressing doubt
09:21 that Jesus can do anything about the situation.
09:24 Now if He had been here earlier everything would be okay.
09:27 He could have kept this man from dying.
09:29 But they don't believe that He can raise him from the dead.
09:34 Now, even Martha wavers a little bit at this point.
09:39 And notice verse 39, he says,
09:44 "Take away the stone Jesus said.
09:46 And Martha says but Lord, said Martha,
09:49 the sister of the dead man,
09:50 by this time there is a bad order
09:52 he's been there for four days.
09:55 Then Jesus said, did I not tell you that,
09:57 if you believed, you would see the glory of God."
10:02 And then it tells the story, they took away the stone,
10:06 Jesus looked up and said,
10:07 "Father, I thank you that you've heard me.
10:09 I knew you always hear me
10:11 but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here
10:14 that they may believe that you have sent me."
10:17 And He calls Lazarus out and Lazarus comes.
10:23 The beautiful thing is that the raising of Lazarus
10:27 raises Mary's spirits and in the very next chapter,
10:31 we see her totally sold out to Jesus.
10:34 No more doubts, no more questions,
10:37 no more wavering, you know, staying here,
10:40 and let Jesus be over here.
10:41 She wants to be with Him all the time.
10:44 And she senses that Jesus is going to die.
10:48 And so she brings this perfume probably a year's wages,
10:53 she brings this perfume to anoint Him for His burial.
10:56 So in Chapter 12, Mary shows the ultimate devotion.
11:01 In Chapter 11, Martha is the one
11:03 that shows this second generation devotion,
11:07 belief without seeing.
11:09 Mary like Thomas needs to see,
11:11 she needs to touch in order to believe.
11:13 But once she truly believes,
11:15 she is totally devoted and totally sold out to Jesus.
11:20 And I find this observation to be tremendously encouraging
11:26 because a lot of people are like Mary and Martha.
11:30 There's a lot of people who are really structured,
11:34 you know, they are not that emotional,
11:35 they are efficient, they get the job done, you know.
11:39 And they kind of look down at the people
11:41 whose emotions are all over the map just a little bit.
11:43 So Martha represents those people who are distracted
11:49 and don't come to Jesus because they are distracted,
11:52 their life is full, they've got things to do,
11:55 emails to answer and so on.
11:57 Mary on the other hand is the kind of person
11:59 whose heart is in the right place
12:02 but their emotions are all over the map.
12:04 You know, one day they are in love with Jesus,
12:06 the next day their head is somewhere else,
12:08 the next day they are distracted by this here and there.
12:11 And the beauty of this is that
12:13 both of these sisters come to true,
12:16 full, deep, genuine faith at the end.
12:21 That's the beautiful story.
12:22 It doesn't matter what your personality is.
12:26 There are all kinds of personalities.
12:28 It doesn't matter how consistent you are as a person.
12:33 Some people are up and down,
12:34 other people are steady as a rock.
12:36 But Jesus works with all of them.
12:39 Every one of us has access to Him.
12:42 And there's no need for us to say,
12:44 oh, He wouldn't possibly accept me,
12:47 because we know that He would.
12:49 He loves us as we are and He takes us
12:53 and He makes us what we could be. Amen.
12:56 And Dr. Pauline, Jesus is still--
12:59 can still resurrect people today
13:01 from their spiritual death? That's right.
13:05 And friends, perhaps you at one point
13:07 accepted Jesus and let Him go.
13:09 Well, today, Jesus wants to make that call
13:11 to resurrect you to come forth
13:13 and to live a life in Him.
13:15 God bless you till next time.


Revised 2014-12-17