Jesus at the home of Mary and Martha

A group of friends went deer hunting and paired off in twos for the day. That night one of the hunters returned alone, staggering under an eight-point buck. “Where’s Harry?” he was asked. “Harry had a stroke of some kind. He’s a couple of miles back up the trail.&q … More


Lazarus probably died about the same time the messenger arrived to tell Jesus about his sickness (v. 17).  Since Palestine is a warm climate and decomposition sets in quickly, a person was usually buried the same day he died. Therefore, Lazarus had been placed in a tomb. Since Bethany was only about two miles from Jerusalem, many people had come to comfort Mary and Martha, the sisters of Lazarus (vv. 18-19). 

Mary and Martha were quite different in their personalities (vv. 20-22). Martha was a task-oriented person, while Mary was a people person. Jesus did not condemn Martha’s service, but He did rebuke her for being “torn apart” by so many things (Lk 10:39-41). I find it interesting that Mary is found three times in the Gospels and each time she is at Jesus feet. 


Martha was quick to affirm her faith in Jesus Christ (v. 22), and Jesus responded by promising her that her brother would rise again (v. 23). She interprets this to mean on the last day, when Jesus meant right away (v. 24). Martha was like many Christians today who do not appropriate the promises of God for now. It is like having a million dollars in a checking account and not realizing that you can write checks on it. 


Martha is best known for being too busy to sit down and talk with Jesus (Lk 10:38-42). But here we see her as a woman of deep faith who says, “I do believe that you are Christ, the Son of God.” Her statement of faith is the kind of response that Jesus wants from us. Jesus then said, “I am the one who raises the dead to life (vv. 25-26)! Everyone who has faith in me will live, even if they die. And everyone who lives because of faith in me will never really die. Do you believe this?" 



I am afraid that I tend to be more of a task-oriented person like Martha than a people person like Mary. I want to be more of a person who keeps my priorities in line as God directs.

John 11:17-27 (English Standard Version)

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