John 12:11 – “Because that by reason of him [Lazarus] many of the Jews went away, and believed on Jesus.”
The Scottish clergyman Alexander Whyte once said, “The world would never have heard so much as Lazarus’ name unless the glory of God had been bound up with the sickness, death, and resurrection of that follower of Christ. Two things stand out clearly: first, the tragedy in Bethany presented an opportunity for Mary and Martha to exercise faith and to witness the Savior’s power; and secondly the restoration of Lazarus to life
became a magnet to draw men to the Lord Jesus.”
The sisters revealed their confidence in Christ by sending for Him when their brother became ill. They knew He had the solution to the anxiety that gripped them, for prior acquaintance with Him had given them confidence of His goodness and power. True, Martha chided Him for not arriving sooner and seemed to think that He had come too late. But the sisters had sent for Him, and now He could display His help and grace. Friend, it could be that your trial, your tragedy, your dilemma is the backdrop for God’s intervention.
The terrible event that pushed its way into that home in Bethany became a means of blessing to many. The Lord Jesus, upon hearing that Lazarus was ill, had said, “…This sickness is…for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby.” (John 11:4). The death of Lazarus became the cause of his sisters’ grief, but his resurrection from the grave gave them reason for rejoicing and led to the salvation of many.
So it is today. The presence and power of Christ can so altar every circumstance that it becomes a means of blessing and salvation.