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THE THREE TOMBS OF LAZARUS

Why did Lazarus have three tombs?

THE THREE TOMBS OF LAZARUS

THE THREE TOMBS OF LAZARUS


Why did Lazarus have three tombs? By Simon Brown


Lazarus In Luke 16:19 and  Lazarus In John 11.


In my previous articles I have talked about my long and thorough research on the two Lazarus' in Luke 16:19 and John 11 of which I believe are the same person. I also believe that there are very important facts that can only help our faith, even though not all will agree I know. However, I believe that those who do believe that the story of Luke 16:19 in which real, actual events took place, rather then a parable, will most certainly be strengthened by knowing that the rich man in this story told by Jesus was a real person who died and that his soul continues to live on after death in a real horrifying place.

But it also has a great side to this story of hope and redemption of a new life for us immediately after our first death knowing that our souls go to heaven, for those who put their trust in Jesus. I also believe that by believing that both Lazarus' in Luke 16:19 and John 11 are one and the same person it adds weight to the story of Luke 16:19 being real events that happened, and therefore it brings a consciousness of how we live our everyday lives to the forefront of our thinking and therefore affects how we live and act, speak and make decisions.


In short, it acts as a deterrent whilst we are living. A warning, yes, but also Jesus’ way of helping us to depart from sin for those who believe and  listen in order to help us enter into heaven. Interestingly, I find those believers who do not believe that Lazarus and the rich man in Luke 16:19 to be a story of real events but instead believe it to be a parable, these same groups of believers generally also seem to believe in the unbiblical doctrine of SOUL SLEEP which by believing in soul sleep I believe can do only one thing, weaken the deterrent Jesus made for us. 
If you have not read theses articles then please click here.   


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How can one person have three tombs?


The answer is because Jesus performed a wonderful miracle only God could do at that time, and one thing is for sure, there aren't many people who have been buried twice, who have been dead for 4 days and then raised back to life in between, by the power of God.
Lets read what the Bible tells us about this miracle.

The Death of Lazarus


1Now a man named Lazarus was sick. He was from Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. 2This Mary, whose brother Lazarus now lay sick, was the same one who poured perfume on the Lord and wiped his feet with her hair. 3So the sisters sent word to Jesus, “Lord, the one you love is sick.”4When he heard this, Jesus said, “This sickness will not end in death. No, it is for God’s glory so that God’s Son may be glorified through it.” 5Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. 6Yet when he heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed where he was two more days.7Then he said to his disciples, “Let us go back to Judea.”8“But Rabbi,” they said, “a short while ago the Jews tried to stone you, and yet you are going back there?”9Jesus answered, “Are there not twelve hours of daylight? A man who walks by day will not stumble, for he sees by this world’s light. 10It is when he walks by night that he stumbles, for he has no light.”11After he had said this, he went on to tell them, “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep; but I am going there to wake him up.”12His disciples replied, “Lord, if he sleeps, he will get better.” 13Jesus had been speaking of his death, but his disciples thought he meant natural sleep.14So then he told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead, 15and for your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.”16Then Thomas (called Didymus) said to the rest of the disciples, “Let us also go, that we may die with him.”Jesus Comforts the Sisters17On his arrival, Jesus found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb for four days. 18Bethany was less than two milesa from Jerusalem, 19and many Jews had come to Martha and Mary to comfort them in the loss of their brother. 20When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went out to meet him, but Mary stayed at home.21“Lord,” Martha said to Jesus, “if you had been here, my brother would not have died. 22But I know that even now God will give you whatever you ask.”23Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.”24Martha answered, “I know he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.”25Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; 26and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?”27“Yes, Lord,” she told him, “I believe that you are the Christ the Son of God, who was to come into the world.”28And after she had said this, she went back and called her sister Mary aside. “The Teacher is here,” she said, “and is asking for you.” 29When Mary heard this, she got up quickly and went to him. 30Now Jesus had not yet entered the village, but was still at the place where Martha had met him. 31When the Jews who had been with Mary in the house, comforting her, noticed how quickly she got up and went out, they followed her, supposing she was going to the tomb to mourn there.32When Mary reached the place where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet and said, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.”33When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come along with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled. 34“Where have you laid him?” he asked. “Come and see, Lord,” they replied.35Jesus wept.36Then the Jews said, “See how he loved him!”37But some of them said, “Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from dying?”


Jesus Raises Lazarus From the Dead


38Jesus, once more deeply moved, came to the tomb. It was a cave with a stone laid across the entrance. 39“Take away the stone,” he said.“But, Lord,” said Martha, the sister of the dead man, “by this time there is a bad odor, for he has been there four days.”40Then Jesus said, “Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?”41So they took away the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. 42I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me.”43When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” 44The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face.


Where is this Tomb where Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead?



There is a very well known place thought to be the traditional spot of where this wonderful miracle took place.
It is about 2 miles from the Holy City of Jerusalem, on the southeast slope of the Mount of Olives in the West Bank town of Al-Eizariya, which is believed to be the famous biblical village of Bethany. 
It receives 1000's of visitors from all over the world every year, people who gaze at the entrance, with the sound of Jesus’ voice in their heads declaring LAZARUS, COME FORTH!!

After 4 days of Lazarus’ soul being in a compartment called paradise in Hades God raises his soul back into his dead rotten body, still wrapped up in strips of linen. Their hearts fill with joy as they continue to stand there thinking of the divine words of Jesus, saying “Take off the grave clothes and let him go.”


The entrance to the tomb we see here is not the original entrance as this entrance is through the mosque which can still be seen on the east wall. 
As you walk in and down the twenty-four uneven rock-cut steps from the modern entrance from ground level you come to a square chamber serving as a place of prayer, it then continues down more steps which then leads to the proposed famous tomb of Lazarus.


Evidence of Veneration


There is recorded evidence that there were many Christian churches' built on the site that go back to the time of a Roman historian, exegete and Christian 
polemicist. He became the Bishop of Caesarea in Palestine about the year 314. 
The many churches that have come and gone, fallen and rebuilt, is evidence of a place of Veneration. 
There is also evidence of this place being dedicated to Saint Lazarus, called the Lazarium, by a 
RomanChristian priestconfessor, theologian and historian, in 390.
Here is more evidence that I find interesting that sheds more light on this tomb being the tomb of Lazarus. There is surviving information about Egeria who was a woman who travelled to the Holy Land in 381–384. She kept records of her journeys to this place which we can still see read today.
I believe it could well be the genuine tomb because it was one of the most loved and popular miracles Jesus performed. I believe this would be a place remembered and not be easily forgotten.


 

Second Tomb of Lazarus

A few quick facts for you.


Autun Cathedral.


I wrote in a previous article that various historical sources indicate that the resurrected Lazarus, brother of Mary Magdalene, travelled across Europe to France and then England following the resurrection of Jesus. Roman-style artwork in several French locations portray Lazarus becoming Lazarus the apostle. 

Interestingly there is also a church in France called Autun Cathedral. It is a historical building in Burgundy and holds the relics of Lazarus. Lazarus was also said to have been the first Bishop of Marseilles having converted a number of the inhabitants of Marseilles to Christianity.


Third Tomb of Lazarus

02-20-07 © Jivko Kazakov
Copyright ©2012 iStockphoto LP. 


If this is the case than how can there be a tomb with his name on it in The Church of Ayio in Cyprus. Well, there is a Greek Orthodox tradition that he fled to this Church from those trying to take his life and apparently was later consecrated Bishop of Kition by Paul and Barnabas.


It is also a fact that the relics of the Saints were taken from their original place to anther country and they would house or even build a church to keep the famous parts of the Holy Saints or Prophets.


Rachel Bellerby states:

Any Religious relics or items from Holy Sites were the crowd-pullers of the medieval age. Any church or monastery that could lay claim to a relic would be assured of a steady stream of visitors. A relic was an item which was believed to be an authentic physical part of a religious figure, such as a saint, the Virgin Mary, or even Jesus. Relics included his crown of thorns or parts of his cross and nails. Below is believed to be the True Cross it is the name for physical remnants which, by a Christian tradition are believed to be from the cross upon which Jesus was crucified, even his robe that the Romans played a game over for. Most remembered was the Holy Grail with people still looking for it today. Ludicrous still to the modern mind, such as a drop of the breast milk of the Virgin Mary, a phial of Christ’s blood or one of Jesus’ baby teeth. Some relics could be visited at the place they were housed, such as the milk of the Virgin Mary at England’s Walsingham Abbey. Why were relics so important?

Many people believed that relics were invested with heavenly powers and that to be close to a relic, or even better, to touch one, would provide a person with spiritual blessings, divine protection and even a cure from illness. So for these reasons anything to do with Holy People and Holy Sites were priceless. 


The Importance of Medieval Religious Relics by Rachel Bellerby Go to Website

This is why we can sometimes find that well known people like Lazarus had more than one tomb.

Thank you for reading this article and I hope you found it enlightening. May God bless those who seek him, in Jesus name I pray. Amen.

 


 

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