“When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in his spirit and greatly troubled.” (ESV – Read the chapter)
Two verses over from this one is the shortest verse in the Bible: Jesus wept. Here, we are told He was deeply moved and greatly troubled. Basically, Jesus was really emotional. This provides fodder for some theological pondering, which is fine, but it should also be really encouraging for us. Here’s why.
On the theological side, part of His emotional storm here is from anger. Why would He be angry? Nothing had happened to Him. No, but death had claimed yet another victim. Another person He loved and came to die for had been claimed by His great enemy. This one happened to also be a very close friend of His. This represented everything He opposed. So, yes, He was angry. We should be glad to see Jesus’ righteousness on display.
More importantly for us, though, Jesus was sad. But why was He sad? He couldn’t have been sad for Lazarus. He was about to raised him from the dead. I tend to think Jesus was sad because He was sharing in the deep grief of His friends who didn’t know what was coming. He entered into their grief even though He knew what the bigger truth was and experienced it with them. He was reflecting and sharing their grief.
This is what a friend does. Well, as the great hymn proclaims: What a friend we have in Jesus! He enters into our brokenness with us and offers us an understanding presence. He feels our pain because He has felt our pain before. When we cry righteously, He cries with us. (If we are crying because we are experiencing the consequences of our sin, He gives us grace, but He also tells us to get up and quit it. He doesn’t sympathize with our sinning.)
Rest easier knowing that in Jesus, you’ve got a friend who will never leave nor forsake you, and who will always have your back no matter what.