Mary, the Sister of Lazarus

Mary, The Sister Of Lazarus.

For much of the information connected with this name, SEE LAZARUS and SEE MARY MAGDALENE. The facts strictly personal to her are but few. She and her sister Martha appear in Lu 10:40 as receiving Christ in their house. The contrasted temperaments of the two sisters have already been in part discussed. SEE MARTHA. Mary sat listening eagerly for every word that fell from the divine Teacher. She had chosen the good part, the life that had found its unity, the "one thing needful," in rising from the earthly to the heavenly, no longer distracted by the "many things" of earth. The same character shows itself in the history of John 11. Her grief is deeper, but less active. She sits still in the house, She will not go to meet the friends who come on the formal visit of consolation. But when her sister tells her secretly, "The Master is come and calleth for thee," she rises quickly and goes forth at once (Joh 11:20,28). Those who have watched the depth of her grief have but one explanation for the sudden change: "She goeth to the grave to weep there!" Her first thought, when she sees the Teacher in whose power and love she had trusted, is one of complaint. "She fell down at his feet, saying, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died." Up to this point her relation to the divine Friend had been one of reverence, receiving rather than giving, blessed in the consciousness of his favor. But the great joy and love which her brother's return to life called up in her, poured themselves out in larger measure than had been seen before. The treasured alabaster-box of ointment was brought forth at the final feast of Bethany (Joh 12:3). A.D. 29. Matthew and Mark keep back her name. SEE ANOINTING.

Of her after-history we know nothing. The ecclesiastical traditions about her are based on the unfounded hypothesis of her identity with Mary Magdalene.

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