Bethany, now known as the present day West Bank is found in Israel,
Snuggled in the heart of al-Eizariya to the east of Jerusalem,
This town is famous for real miracles that were never a tall tale,
It had an influence by early Egyptians where Jewish cultural traditions stem.
This was the town where three siblings lived happily together in one home,
Two sisters named Mary and Martha, along with their brother Laz,
All was well till the master left town and their brother fell ill,
Herbal remedies and all medical efforts failed causing their faith to run,
So a messenger to the Messiah was sent screaming loud,
“Lord the one you love is sick, come quick, please don’t delay”
But perhaps by the time he rode out to see Him who heals,
It might have already been too late.
But this is where one wonders, even to this day,
Why did Jesus wait so long to help the one He held with love,
Not until two days later did The King of Kings begin the journey,
Back to Bethany to heal the one Mary and Martha buried.
Bury they did, they buried him properly,
According to the Egyptian traditions they followed they removed all vital organs,
And placed them in canisters in a separate section of the tomb,
Then embalmed Laz’s body with linen soaked with tears of despair,
Five full days after the body of Laz was gone, his organs taken out,
And body drained of all rivers of life, embalmed and mummified in the back of the tomb,
Jesus rolls up.
“Oh Jesus! If only you were here, perhaps our brother would have lived!”
Perhaps he would have been healed of his ailment that stole his life,
When we called You, You did not come right away,
What did you mean when you said, “This sickness would not end in death?”
Hope is gone, Jesus. All hope is gone.
His body is buried and placed behind a stone.
If only you had been here Jesus, if only you’d had come.
Perhaps we’d be rejoicing instead of singing this graveside song.
Jesus wept. Jesus wept in despair, not because of the death,
But because those he loved had lack of faith,
Because those He loved did not believe that this sickness would not end in the grave,
But this was just the beginning, the beginning of life, and death would not stay.
“Lazarus, Come out!” Jesus said loudly, with the authority only he could hold,
If he had simply said: “Come out!” then surely all the dead would have risen again,
But God’s Son had such a faith that was so robust and bold,
That even the grave clothes made of woven linen couldn’t hold Lazarus in death’s den.
So out comes Laz, alive and well all in one piece,
“Take those grave clothes off of him,” Jesus said,
His voice thundering with assurance and divine authority as he always speaks,
For this man you see now alive was surely once dead.
Sometimes we never know why bad things happen to us,
Why death, sickness, ailments, problems, and heartaches threaten to overtake our hearts,
But one thing is true: and it happened at Bethany that day,
All things work together for the good- death is never here to stay,
So put your faith in Him- the One who makes things new,
You may not see a good thing but rest assured He’s on his way,
All things work together for the good of those who love God, and we know God loves us,
What happened for Laz can happen for you and me, just remember Him, and Trust.
~adopted from John 11~