Summary:Lazarus, the son of Joash, lived in Bethany with his sisters Mary and Martha.
His sister, Mary, was happily wed to Yeshua when she was fourteen. Lazarus suffered
from blindness, and was the first person Yeshua (his brother-in-law) healed (Y:4:4-10).
This event launched Yeshua into his public ministry. Yeshua would often stay in the
house of Lazarus and Martha throughout his ministry.
Approximately two and half years into Yeshua’s ministry, while he was teaching in
Ephraim, a messenger came from Jerusalem informing him that Lazarus was very sick
and ‘near unto death’ (Y:40:16). Knowing full well that Jerusalem was a dangerous
place for him, and despite the protests of his disciples (especially Cephas), Yeshua
made it clear that he intended to return to Jerusalem (Y:40:17-27). Sending Mary
and Martha to be with their brother, Yeshua stayed in Ephraim for ‘a little while’
(Y:40:29-30). When Yeshua and his disciples arrived in Bethany, Martha informed him
that Lazarus had died the day before (Y:41:2-3). Yeshua proceeded to wake Lazarus
from death, which caused a momentous stir among the crowds flocking to Jerusalem
for the coming Passover (Y:41:4-28).
The raising of Lazarus caused the ruling priests in Jerusalem to fear even more for
their positions of authority, as news of the miracle was spreading and many believed
Yeshua was the Anointed One. Hoping to quell Yeshua’s growing popularity and instill
fear in those who believed in him, it was agreed by Caiaphas, the High Priest, and
the temple elders that Lazarus should be killed (Y:41:29-30). The evening after Yeshua’s
memorable entrance into Jerusalem (Y:42:1-20), Lazarus was set upon by agents of
the Sicarii as he went to Jerusalem to feast. His naked body was hung from the walls
of the city (Y:42:21-23).
The next morning, Yeshua was informed that Lazarus had been murdered. It was this
tragedy that triggered Yeshua’s prophetic lament for Jerusalem (Y:42:24-34), and
is perhaps what solidified his decision to set in motion events that he knew would
lead to his own death (Y:42:36; B:24:49-50).
[Yeshua heals Lazarus of blindness]
4. Wherefore, drawing near, Yeshua spoke unto the man, saying: “What would you have
5. And Lazarus answered him, saying: “Restore again my sight, for I know that if
you will but speak the word, God will forgive my transgression, and I shall see again.”
6. When Yeshua heard this, he spoke unto him, saying: “Do you believe that I am able
to do this thing?” And he answered: “Yes, my Lord, I believe. For I know that you
are the very Anointed One of God.”
7. And Yeshua, hearing this, was filled with compassion towards him, and he said:
“Then, my son, receive even now according to your faith. For in this moment are your
sins forgiven you.”
8. And Lazarus received again his sight instantly, and seeing before him the Only
Begotten, he worshipped him. And throughout the regions round about did the word
go forth concerning the healing of Lazarus.
9. And Lazarus rejoiced before the Lord, and all Bethany came to see this man who
could restore again the sight of the blind and who could forgive sins by the speaking
of the word only.
10. And Lazarus entreated the Lord to come unto his house, and entering in he found
Martha and Mary, the sisters of Lazarus, and seeing their brother restored unto sight,
they knelt before the Nazarene and did wash his feet with their tears.
[Yeshua raises Lazarus from the dead]
20. And seeing that the Master was standing before the house, they laid the body
before him, and the Lord, lifting his eyes to Heaven, said:
21. “Father, I know that you hear me always, and for this cause do I give thanks
22. Give, therefore, of thy power unto me, that they which see might know of a surety
that I am come from thee.”
23. And turning unto Martha, he spoke, saying: “Did I not say unto you, that if you
would but believe in me, you would see the glory which is come from God?”
24. Now Lazarus was bound head and foot with graveclothes, and his face did they
bind in a napkin; and Yeshua spoke unto the pallbearers, saying: “Unbind him head
25. And when he was loosed from his bindings, the Lord called unto him before the
multitude, saying: “Lazarus, Lazarus, arise.”
26. And immediately Lazarus sat up from off the ground, and all which saw were filled
with unspeakable wonder because of it.
27. So the word went forth concerning the raising of Lazarus from the dead, and from
all Judea, and Perea, and Samaria, and Galilee, did many come up unto Jerusalem unto
28. And all men spoke the name of Yeshua, and many went unto Bethany seeking him,
and there went also unto Lazarus a great many which would see for themselves the
one which was raised from the dead, that perchance they might touch him.
29. But in Jerusalem did Caiaphas take counsel with the chief priests and elders
concerning what they should do because of it.
30. And when it was decided, they determined that Lazarus should be killed also,
for because of him, all Israel believed that Yeshua was the very Anointed One which
was come from God.
[Lazarus is murdered]
21. But Lazarus, as he was going unto Jerusalem to feast, there fell upon him certain
of the Sicarii, and they killed him and did strip him of all his clothing, and they
hung him from the walls of the city.
22. And all which passed by, when they saw it, spoke, saying: “Is this not the man
which the Master raised from the dead?”
23. And many which followed after the Lord, withdrew themselves from him, lest they
also be killed, for they began to fear for their lives.