Lazarus lives in the little village of Bethany that is about two miles or 3k east of Jerusalem. Bethany is on the map at right as the purple arrow and Jerusalem is the salmon circle. The Dead Sea through the desert is marked in red. Bethany is now called Al-Eizariya on what is designated as the “West Bank” of Palestine. According to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, it is the second largest Palestinian city in the Jerusalem Governorate, with a population of 17,606 per 2007. The Church of Lazarus is now a mosque.
The Scene: Lazarus is dead, and Martha is heartsick believing Jesus failed them. He proves her wrong by telling Lazarus to come out & show himself so they can know for certain that He is the Messiah, the Living God. This is the seventh for each day of the week, miracle that Jesus performs. There is another, the eighth but that is part of a new cycle for it is the Resurrection.
38 Jesus, intensely moved again, came to the tomb. (Now it was a cave, and a stone was placed across it.) 39 Jesus said, “Take away the stone.” Martha, the sister of the deceased, replied, “Lord, by this time the body will have a bad smell, because he has been buried four days.”
40 Jesus responded, “Didn’t I tell you that if you believe, you would see the glory of God?” 41 So they took away the stone. Jesus looked upward and said, “Father, I thank you that you have listened to me. 42 I knew that you always listen to me, but I said this for the sake of the crowd standing around here, that they may believe that you sent me.” 43 When he had said this, he shouted in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” 44 The one who had died came out.”
Gospel of John xi:41-42