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THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO JOHN - Chapter 11 - Verse 35

Verse 35. Jesus wept. It has been remarked that this is the shortest verse in the Bible; but it is exceedingly important and tender. It shows the Lord Jesus as a friend, a tender friend, and evinces his character as a man. And from this we learn,

1st. That the most tender personal friendship is not inconsistent with the most pure religion. Piety binds stronger the ties of friendship, makes more tender the emotions of love, and seals and sanctifies the affections of friends.

2nd. It is right, it is natural, it is indispensable for the Christian to sympathize with others in their afflictions. Ro 12:15: "Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep."

3rd. Sorrow at the death of friends is not improper. It is right to weep. It is the expression of nature, and religion does not forbid or condemn it. All that religion does in the case is to temper and chasten our grief; to teach us to mourn with submission to God; to weep without murmuring, and to seek to banish tears, not by hardening the heart or forgetting the friend, but by bringing the soul, made tender by grief, to receive the sweet influences of religion, and to find calmness and peace in the God of all consolation.

4th. We have here an instance of the tenderness of the character of Jesus. The same Saviour wept over Jerusalem, and felt deeply for poor dying sinners. To the same tender and compassionate Saviour Christians may now come (Heb 4:15); and to him the penitent sinner may also come, knowing that he will not cast him away.

{w} "wept" Isa 63:9; Lu 19:41; Heb 2:16,17

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