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20When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went and met him, while Mary stayed at home. 21Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. 22But even now I know that God will give you whatever you ask of him.” 23Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.” 24Martha said to him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day.” 25Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Those who believe in me, even though they die, will live, 26and everyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?”

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20-22. Martha, as soon as she heard that Jesus was coming, went and met him—true to the energy and activity of her character, as seen in Lu 10:38-42. (See on Lu 10:38-42).

but Mary sat … in the house—equally true to her placid character. These undesigned touches not only charmingly illustrate the minute historic fidelity of both narratives, but their inner harmony.

21. Then said Martha … Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died—As Mary afterwards said the same thing (Joh 11:32), it is plain they had made this very natural remark to each other, perhaps many times during these four sad days, and not without having their confidence in His love at times overclouded. Such trials of faith, however, are not peculiar to them.

22. But I know that even now, &c.—Energetic characters are usually sanguine, the rainbow of hope peering through the drenching cloud.

whatsoever thou wilt ask of God, God will give it thee—that is "even to the restoration of my dead brother to life," for that plainly is her meaning, as the sequel shows.

23-27. Jesus saith unto her, Thy brother shall rise again—purposely expressing Himself in general terms, to draw her out.

24. Martha said, … I know that he shall rise again … at the last day—"But are we never to see him in life till then?"

25. Jesus said, I am the resurrection and the life—"The whole power to restore, impart, and maintain life, resides in Me." (See on Joh 1:4; Joh 5:21). What higher claim to supreme divinity than this grand saying can be conceived?

he that believeth in me, though … dead … shall he live—that is, The believer's death shall be swallowed up in life, and his life shall never sink into death. As death comes by sin, it is His to dissolve it; and as life flows through His righteousness, it is His to communicate and eternally maintain it (Ro 5:21). The temporary separation of soul and body is here regarded as not even interrupting, much less impairing, the new and everlasting life imparted by Jesus to His believing people.

Believest thou this?—Canst thou take this in?




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