John 11:1 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

John 11:1, NIV: "Now a man named Lazarus was sick. He was from Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha."

John 11:1, ESV: "Now a certain man was ill, Lazarus of Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha."

John 11:1, KJV: "Now a certain man was sick, named Lazarus, of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha."

John 11:1, NASB: "Now a certain man was sick: Lazarus of Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha."

John 11:1, NLT: "A man named Lazarus was sick. He lived in Bethany with his sisters, Mary and Martha."

John 11:1, CSB: "Now a man was sick, Lazarus from Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha."

What does John 11:1 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Lazarus, Martha, and Mary are a brother and two sisters apparently very close to Jesus (Luke 10:38–42; John 11:5). Other passages in the New Testament suggest Jesus visiting their home (Matthew 21:17), speak of Mary lavishing Jesus with expensive oil (John 11:2), and show the sisters referring to Jesus as their "teacher" (John 11:28). Scripture does not explicitly say what the relationship was between Jesus and Lazarus, though all accounts point to them being very close (John 11:3; 36). Since Lazarus is said to have been at home, and is not mentioned in other incidents related to Jesus, he was clearly not travelling with Jesus.

Despite sharing a name, the Lazarus resurrected by Jesus is not the same person as the Lazarus mentioned in Jesus' Parable of Lazarus and the Rich Man (Luke 16:19–31). At the very least, the brother of Mary and Martha does not appear to have been poor, since he was able to host Jesus and His followers during their travels. There is still an interesting connection to that parable, however. In Luke, Jesus points out that some people are so hardened against truth that they wouldn't even believe if someone was resurrected (Luke 16:27–31). The gospel of John proves this true, as Jesus' enemies will react to Lazarus' resurrection by seeking to have both him and Jesus killed (John 11:53; 12:9–11).