Originally posted by robbie carrobie
some very perplexing question trouble me about the account.
1. If Lazarus was a good man, which he seems to have been, and he had died, which evidently he had, why had not he ascended to heaven?
2. If he had ascended to heaven, why bring him back to die a second time?
3. why indeed was Christ crying?
4. what indeed did Christ mean, by ...[text shortened]... se who are recipients of Gods spirit can answer these things, even as Jospeh himself has stated.
Of course it's alright to ask questions. But why stop there? I don't think God intended for His Word to be misunderstood. So when an answer comes, why not accept it in faith?
Let me see if I can give a reasonable answer to the best of my ability.
#1 At the time that Lazarus died people were not going to heaven. By that I mean, nowhere in the "old testament" will you find any promise from God that when one died they would go to heaven. Going to heaven is a new phenomenon attributed to the apostle Paul, and was not told about in the old testament. Except for Enoch and that other guy. I forget his name right off.
Old testament saints went to paradise, or Abraham's bosom. The promise to the old testament saints is the resurrection in the Kingdom when it is established at the second coming.
#2 Lazarus didn't die and go to heaven. Someday I intend to ask Lazarus what it was like to die, go to paradise, and be risen from the dead and then die again.
#3 I'm sure it wasn't because He was a pansy. And I'm sure it wasn't because He was afraid that when He called Lazarus forth it wouldn't happen. From the context it appears that Jesus wept for those that were there, and perhaps because of their balling like a bunch of faithless sinners.
#4 If you're referring to His answer to His disciples, Jesus eventually told them plainly that Lazarus was dead.