John 11 – Jesus Wakes Lazarus – The Gospels

Read The Book of JohnNow a man named Lazarus, of Bethany, was lying ill; he belonged to the same village as Mary and her sister Martha. 2 This Mary, whose brother Lazarus was ill, was the Mary who anointed the Master with perfume, and wiped his feet with her hair. 3 The sisters, therefore, sent this message to Jesus: ‘Master, your friend is ill;’

4 And, when Jesus heard it, he said: “This illness is not to end in death, but is to rebound to the honor of God, in order that the Son of God may be honored through it.”

5 Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus. 6 Yet, when he heard of the illness of Lazarus, he still stayed two days in the place where he was. 7 Then, after that, he said to his disciples: “Let us go to Judea again.” 8 “Rabbi,” they replied, “the Jews were but just now seeking to stone you; and are you going there again?”

9 “Are not there twelve hours in the day?” answered Jesus. “If you walk about in the day-time, you do not stumble, because you can see the light of the sun; 10 But, if you walk about at night, you stumble, because you have not the light.” 11 And, when he had said this, he added: “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep; but I am going that I may wake him.”

12 “If he has fallen asleep, Master, he will get well,” said the disciples. 13 But Jesus meant that he was dead; they, however, supposed that he was speaking of natural sleep. 14 Then he said to them plainly: “Lazarus is dead; 15 And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, so that you may learn to believe in me. But let us go to him.” 16 At this, Thomas, who was called Didymus, said to his fellow-disciples: “Let us go too, so that we may die with him.”

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17 When Jesus reached the place, he found that Lazarus had been four days in the tomb already. 18 Bethany being only about two miles from Jerusalem, 19 A number of the Jews had come there to condole with Martha and Mary on their brother’s death. 20 When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went to meet him; but Mary sat quietly at home.

21 “Master,” Martha said to Jesus, “if you had been here, my brother would not have died. 22 Even now, I know that God will grant you whatever you ask him.” 23 “Your brother shall rise to life,” said Jesus.

24 “I know that he will,” replied Martha, “in the resurrection at the last day.” 25 “I am the resurrection and the life,” said Jesus. “He that believes in me shall live, though he die; 26 And he who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?” 27 “Yes Master,” she answered; “I have learned to believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, who was to come into the world.”

28 After saying this, Martha went and called her sister Mary, and whispered: “The Teacher is here, and is asking for you.” 29 As soon as Mary heard that, she got up quickly, and went to meet him. 30 Jesus had not then come into the village, but was still at the place where Martha had met him. 31 So the Jews, who were in the house with Mary, consoling her, when they saw her get up quickly and go out, followed her, thinking that she was going to the tomb to weep there.

32 When Mary came where Jesus was and saw him, she threw herself at his feet. “Master,” she exclaimed, “if you had been here, my brother would not have died!” 33 When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come with her weeping also, he groaned deeply, and was greatly distressed.

34 “Where have you buried him?” he asked. “Come and see, Master,” they answered. 35 Jesus burst into tears. 36 “How he must have loved him!” the Jews exclaimed; 37 But some of them said: “Could not this man, who gave sight to the blind man, have also prevented Lazarus from dying?”

38 Again groaning inwardly, Jesus came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone lay against the mouth of it. 39 “Move the stone away,” said Jesus. “Master,” said Martha, the sister of the dead man, “by this time the smell must be offensive, for this is the fourth day since his death.” 40 “Did not I tell you,” replied Jesus, “that, if you would believe in me, you should see the glory of God?”

41 So they moved the stone away; and Jesus, with uplifted eyes, said: “Father, I thank thee that thou has heard my prayer; 42 I know that thou always heard me; but I say this for the sake of the people standing near, so that they may believe that thou has sent me as thy messenger.”

43 Then, after saying this, Jesus called in a loud voice: “Lazarus! come out!” 44 The dead man came out, wrapped hand and foot in a winding- sheet; his face, too, had been wrapped in a cloth. “Set him free,” said Jesus, “and let him go.”1

45 Because of this, many of the Jews, who had come to visit Mary and had seen what Jesus did, learned to believe in him. 46 Some of them, however, went to the Pharisees, and told them what he had done. 47 Upon this the chief priests and the Pharisees called a meeting of the high council, and said: “What are we to do, now that this man is giving so many signs? 48 If we let him alone as we are doing, everyone will believe in him; and the Romans will come and will take from us both our city and our nationality.”

49 One of them, however, Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, said to them: 50 “You are utterly mistaken. You do not consider that it is better for you that one man should die for the people, rather than the whole nation should be destroyed.” 51 Now he did not say this of his own accord; but, as high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus was to die for the nation, 52 And not for the nation only, but also that he might unite in one body the children of God now scattered far and wide. 53 So from that day they plotted to put Jesus to death.

54 Because of this, Jesus did not go about publicly among the Jews any more, but left that neighborhood, and went into the country bordering on the wilderness, to a town called Ephraim, where he stayed with his disciples. 55 But the Jewish festival of the Passover was near; and many people had gone up from the country to Jerusalem for their purification before the festival began.

56 So they looked for Jesus there, and said to one another as they stood in the temple courts: “What do you think? Do you think he will come to the festival?” 57 The chief priests and the Pharisees had already issued orders that, if anyone learned where Jesus was, that person should give information so that they might arrest him.

To read the next chapter of the Book of John, please go to The Gospel of John – 12.

  1. Discover the symbolic meaning Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead (as found in the Gospel of John) by visiting: And Forgive Us Our Trespasses. []