(NOTE: I have been asked to write short articles for the church bulletin at our new work. Each one is a “Did You Know?” article, focusing on little-known facts in the Bible. We will be posting those here each week–starting today–for your enjoyment. Also, we are still in the process of house-hunting, and helping to improve the property at Jesse’s parents, which has limited how much posting I’ve been able to do here. Thanks for sticking with us!)
Did You Know?
He was quite famous, a celebrity in Israel. The people flocked to see him, and because of him, many people believed. But the chief priests wanted him dead. Surely you know who we’re talking about, right? Well, let me give you one last clue: a week before the cross, even Jesus came to see him!
The man is Lazarus.
In John 12:9-11, the Bible says that the Jews came not only to see Jesus, but to see Lazarus. His resurrection from the dead was so impressive to them that many of them believed in Jesus as a result of seeing and talking to Lazarus. Here was undeniable proof of the power of Jesus, and confirmation that He was sent by God with a mission—He could be the Messiah!
This was unacceptable to the chief priests, whose rejection of Jesus had already caused them to contemplate murdering Him (John 11:47-53). But now they had Lazarus in their sights, ready and willing to put him to death as well. Their mood certainly didn’t improve when the next day, Jesus enters the city and people spread the word about Lazarus’ resurrection from the dead at Jesus’ hand (John 12:16-17).
The murder plot to kill Lazarus is often lost among the many details of Jesus’ final week, but happen it did! Did you know?
-Bradley S. Cobb