Small Group Bible Study

Lazarus
 - Week 
3

A God Who Weeps

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In this week’s passage, Jesus shows us what it looks like to grieve like God.

We so often forget that Jesus entering into our pain is a part of the good news. By looking at Jesus’ example we discover that there is a time when the most holy response you can have is to mourn.

We live in a culture of avoidance that tells us pain should be rushed through or passed by. We don’t see Jesus doing that. Instead, we see him entering into grief through the art of lament.

Let’s read together.

Grow Together

Read this from the Bible together:

John 11:28-36  
28 After she had said this, she went back and called her sister Mary aside. “The Teacher is here,” she said, “and is asking for you.” 29 When Mary heard this, she got up quickly and went to him. 30 Now Jesus had not yet entered the village, but was still at the place where Martha had met him. 31 When the Jews who had been with Mary in the house, comforting her, noticed how quickly she got up and went out, they followed her, supposing she was going to the tomb to mourn there.

32 When Mary reached the place where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet and said, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.”

33 When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come along with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled. 34 “Where have you laid him?” he asked.

“Come and see, Lord,” they replied.

35 Jesus wept.

36 Then the Jews said, “See how he loved him!”

Some key statements and questions put forward that are important for us to talk about…

When Mary reached the place where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet… When you are in seasons of pain or trouble does it seem natural to you to fall at the feet of Jesus? If yes, share a time you have. If not, where do you fall?

When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come along with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled. Jesus is “deeply moved” and “troubled” by death because he hates sin and death more than anyone who has ever existed. Are you deeply moved when hard things happen? In what ways? If not, is your instinct to numb, avoid, or ignore?

Jesus wept. Grieving is Christ-like. Mourning is never disobedience when motivated by compassion or holy outrage at the curse of sin and death. Have you ever been tempted to believe that engaging in grief is a sin? What does Jesus’ example reveal?

Next Steps

“When we choose to opt out of pain we also opt out of this side of God’s character.” Pastor Nick challenged us to enter into pain as a way of knowing God more. What pain do you have in your life that you haven’t invited God into?

In times of grief, the enemy tempts us to distrust God by asking, “Where is your God?”Based on this passage of Scripture, where do you think God is when we mourn?

“Jesus’ body will forever bear the wounds which have made us whole.” The scars of our sin remained on Jesus in his resurrected body. What does a scarred Savior in eternity reveal about the heart of a God who weeps?