“When he had heard therefore that he was sick, he abode two days still in the same place where he was. “
To delay is often interpreted as not caring, but such is not the case with God’s delays, they are for a holy purpose. They are to show forth the glory of God and to encourage the faith of His people.
In the case of Lazaras’ sickness, it was not a lack of love for the three members of the family that caused Jesus to remain two days “where He was.” “God’s ways are not our ways, they are above our ways as the Heavens are above the earth.” “And therefore, will the Lord wait, that he may be gracious unto you, and therefore will He be exalted, that he may have mercy upon you: for the Lord is a God of judgment: blessed are they that wait for Him.” (Isaiah 30:18)
There was no coldness of affection for those He loved, in this delay, but the right moment had not arrived, things must get worse at Bethany before he will intervene. “Man’s extremity is God’s opportunity” is a true principle here, as it often is in His dealings with us. “The Lord indeed is a God of (good) judgment.” His judgments are always right, we must realize that He is never late, nor will he be early. His timetable is based upon the glory of the Father and our eternal good.
Here, he is also testing His disciples and strengthening their faith. It is not always God’s way to “travel the road” of human kindness, that is, to do what seems to be the kindest thing. It is much more beneficial to all concerned, here, that He wait, we would think that the kindest thing to do would be to rush to the side of the deathly ill person, but the Lord Jesus was listening to a Higher Authority. We must learn from this that human affection may cause us to lose sight of God’s plan. We must look to the Lord in all our undertakings, “In all our ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct thy paths.” Our obedience will bring blessing and victory.
In His Amazing Grace,
Pastor Ed Bowen