5th Sunday of Lent, Year A
“Jesus wept.” (John 11:35) is the shortest verse in the entire New Testament. It stands there all alone, stark, out there. It’s meant to make one think: “Why?” Why did Jesus weep?
He’s already determined to bring Lazarus back to life. That wouldn’t be the reason for his tears. Maybe he was overcome with emotion, seeing Mary and the people accompanying her weeping. We all had that experience: tears beget tears just as laughter is contagious.
Why did Jesus weep? I think it was frustration and anger on Jesus’ part. He’s getting ready to perform the sign that would culminate his miracles in John’s Gospel, a sign that brings life to Lazarus but would be a death sentence for him. He’s become a threat to the leadership and the fragile peace they had made with the occupying Romans. He had to go! He had to die!
Furthermore, he perhaps recognized the fickleness of the crowds and his own chosen 12 and the rest of his disciples. His hour was fast approaching, And, he would be all alone.
“Jesus wept.” (John 11:35).
What do we do that causes Jesus to weep today?