This verse in John 11:35 comes just before one of Jesus’ greatest miracles in His earthly ministry - the resurrection of Lazarus. But the events that proceed this verse make what Jesus did so much more significant.
Jesus was a healer and His friends Mary and Martha knew this. So when their brother became sick, they knew exactly who to call up. Jesus didn’t come soon enough to heal Lazarus, but somehow Jesus still came at the perfect time.
He came knowing that He would raise Lazarus to life despite the fact that Lazarus had been dead for days. But moments before Jesus would call Lazarus out of the grave, He did something that we would never expect from the God man.
“Jesus wept” shows a picture of the heart of our God - the God who mourns with us.
We are in sorrowful times in our world to say the least. We have been in the midst of a pandemic for over 3 months where thousands of people have lost their lives, jobs, and livelihood. We have faced having to close the doors of our churches and learn to adjust to the digital-only world.
At the tail end of this all, just as things seemed to be getting back to normal, the world became a witness to the gruesome, unjust murder of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer. What ensued after, and is still taking place at the writing of this blog, is rioting, looting, and the destruction of America’s cities.
America is in chaos. During this time, it can be far too easy to choose a side and to live under a “them vs. us” mentality. But we can’t help but wonder, what would God have to say about all of this?
Maybe, just maybe, He would weep.
Maybe He would be mourning alongside those who are mourning.
Maybe He would cry, lament, and pray for God to intercede in the midst of the chaos.
The church is called to be like Christ, but for far too long we have overlooked one of the most powerful characteristics of Jesus - His humanity. Jesus was not just an all-powerful, holy God - He was a Jewish man who lived during a time of political unrest, racism, and oppression. Jesus was a real person with real emotions - He was fully God and fully man. His humanity shows us God’s willingness to get on our level and feel what we feel.
Jesus is our “Great High Priest”, as the Book of Hebrews describes Him. This means that Jesus was not like the priests of old who atoned for the sins of the people every year even though they still had sin. Jesus was sinless and perfect, yet He still experienced the trials and tribulations of being human. But when He died for our sins, He paid for them in full.
“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are —yet He did not sin” Hebrews 4:15.
Jesus had empathy for others.
Jesus walked alongside the downtrodden.
Jesus had a heart for the hurting people around Him.
Jesus was not and is not removed from our pain. He purposefully plunged Himself into the depth of the human plight and yet lived a perfect, sinless life. Jesus’ life was marked by His love for those who were hurting and oppressed. He made it clear that He did not come for the healthy but for the sick.
Jesus wants to meet us in our pain.
Jesus wants to mourn with us.
Jesus wants to comfort us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble.
Romans 12 perfectly sums up how the church can and should respond in the midst of the situation we are facing.
“Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.
Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone...
Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.”
As your church continues to navigate through the current world situation, we encourage you to act justly, love mercy, and walk humbly.
Pray for the oppressed. Walk alongside the hurting. Stand up against injustice.
And in all that you do, do everything in love.
Today’s creative spotlight blog is from our very own Pro MediaFire Creative Copywriter, Samantha Carey.
Sam is from the small college town of Indiana, PA! She and her husband, Nick, have the privilege of pastoring Revelry Church where she also serves as the creative team manager. They have an incredible baby boy named Ezekiel who is seriously the light of their life. In her free time, She loves to bake, write poetry, drink good coffee, create jewelry, and binge “The Office.”
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