Short Story 7 – Raising Lazarus from the Dead (John 11:1-37, 38-44, 48)

The Gospel of John features 7 short stories that offer a sampling of the miracles Jesus performed during his time of public ministry. These were written so that his readers would come to “believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing [they] may have life in his name” (John 20:31b).

Here is the plot of the last short story:

Raising Lazarus from the Dead (John 11:1-37, 38-44, 48)

  1. Setting: 
    1. A village called Bethany. (11:1)
    2. Jesus was in Galilee but traveled to Bethany. (v. 17)
  2. Conflict: 
    1. Lazarus had been dead for 4 days, had been buried, and his sisters were mourning. (vv. 17-19)
    2. If Jesus had been there, Lazarus would not have died. (v. 21, 32)
  3. Rising Action:
    1. Jesus claims to be “The resurrection and the life.” (v. 25)
    2. They go to the tomb together and Jesus asks them to remove the stone. (vv. 38-39)
    3. Martha explained why removing the stone was a bad idea. (v. 39)
    4. Jesus insisted. (v. 40)
    5. They removed the stone. (v. 41)
  4. Climax
    1. Jesus called Lazarus out- and he came! (vv. 43-44)
  5. Falling Action:
    1. Jesus had the sisters unwrap him. (v. 44)
  6. Resolution:
    1. No resolution- The Jews were angry, saying, “If we let [Jesus] go on like this, everyone will believe in him, and the Romans will come and take away both our place and our nation.” (v. 48)

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