Jn12:1,2 – Therefore, six days before the Passover, Jesus came to Bethany where Lazarus was, whom Jesus had raised from the dead. So they made Him a dinner there, and Martha was serving; and Lazarus was one of those reclining at the table with Him.
The ministry of Jesus always pointed to the coming kingdom of God. His greatest miracle, raising Lazarus from the tomb, points us to the resurrection beginning with Christ and finishing at His appearing. Going to Lazarus’s home and eating with Him reminded everyone of the death of Lazarus, and more importantly, the promise from God’s word guaranteeing eternal life. Christ had conquered death, Lazarus was a picture of what was coming. Here is how Henry describes this scene.
“Bethany is here described to be the town where Lazarus was, whom he raised from the dead. The miracle wrought here put a new honor upon the place, and made it remarkable. Christ came hither to observe what improvement was made of this miracle; for where Christ works wonders, and shows signal favors, he looks after them, to see whether the intention of them be answered. Where he has sown plentifully, he observes whether it comes up again.”
The second image is a glimpse of the heavenly banquet He is calling us too. As Jesus sat together and ate together with His closest friends they were filled with joy over Lazarus’s healing. This is just a glimpse of the joy all of us will enjoy as we feast together with the Lord after our resurrection. Here is a glimpse from one of Germany’s reformers, Wolfgang Musculus.
“Consider here how wonderful and splendid this banquet was. Christ and Lazarus were at the same table, the one who raises a man dead for four days, and the man who was raised after being dead for four days. And lift up your mind to the heavenly dinner in heaven where Christ, the raiser of all the dead, will sit at the table together with the faithful who have been raised by him.”
Seeing Lazarus filled with joy, celebrating with the Lord and His disciples, what could Mary do? She could not help herself, worship was her only option. That’s how it is for all of us who have tasted His love and have joined in on the spiritual feast available in this life. Worship is a foretaste of the heavenly celebration. It can only be appreciated by those who were dead and now they are alive.