Try to imagine the range of emotion Jesus felt during his three-year ministry.
There were so many extreme highs and lows. One of the intriguing lows of Jesus’ ministry was the death of His friend Lazarus. As we know, this turned into quite the high after Jesus raises him from the dead; but at the time, Jesus was in such great sorrow.
“When Mary reached the place where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet and said, ‘Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.’ When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come along with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled. ‘Where have you laid him?’ he asked. ‘Come and see, Lord,’ they replied. Jesus wept. Then the Jews said, ‘See how he loved him!’” (John 11:32-36)
A few years ago, while serving in Alaska, a family in our church lost their son to a tragic accident. I’ll never forget the first time I walked into their home, following the event. Everything seemed to move in slow motion. Scanning the room, I saw friends and family members holding onto one another and weeping over the loss. It was a terrible experience; to see so many people in such pain.
Is this how Jesus felt as He surveyed the crowd of people mourning the loss of his friend, Lazarus? When I read about the people weeping at the loss of their brother and friend and I see the words describe that Jesus “was deeply moved in spirit and troubled“, I am taken back to that moment, standing in the doorway of our friends’ home. If there was a passage that showed Christ’s humanity, this does it for me.
Regardless of Lazarus’ resurrection, when I see that “Jesus wept”, I am filled with a sense that He truly does understand our earthly sorrow. Sure, maybe greater things were accomplished that day, by raising Lazarus from the dead. However, from this account I will always know that I have a Saviour who has experienced this sorrow.
How have you experienced sorrow?
*Original content taken from QuietMorningsWithHim.com post by Jeremy Norton: Christ’s Ability to Empathize with the Loss of a Love One – April 19th, 2010