|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
11:17-32 Here was a house where the fear of God was, and on which his blessing rested; yet it was made a house of mourning. Grace will keep sorrow from the heart, but not from the house. When God, by his grace and providence, is coming towards us in ways of mercy and comfort, we should, like Martha, go forth by faith, hope, and prayer, to meet him. When Martha went to meet Jesus, Mary sat still in the house; this temper formerly had been an advantage to her, when it put her at Christ's feet to hear his word; but in the day of affliction, the same temper disposed her to melancholy. It is our wisdom to watch against the temptations, and to make use of the advantages of our natural tempers. When we know not what in particular to ask or expect, let us refer ourselves to God; let him do as seemeth him good. To enlarge Martha's expectations, our Lord declared himself to be the Resurrection and the Life. In every sense he is the Resurrection; the source, the substance, the first-fruits, the cause of it. The redeemed soul lives after death in happiness; and after the resurrection, both body and soul are kept from all evil for ever. When we have read or heard the word of Christ, about the great things of the other world, we should put it to ourselves, Do we believe this truth? The crosses and comforts of this present time would not make such a deep impression upon us as they do, if we believed the things of eternity as we ought. When Christ our Master comes, he calls for us. He comes in his word and ordinances, and calls us to them, calls us by them, calls us to himself. Those who, in a day of peace, set themselves at Christ's feet to be taught by him, may with comfort, in a day of trouble, cast themselves at his feet, to find favour with him.
Verse 29. - And she, as soon as she heard, arose (aorist) quickly, and went forth to (meet) him (imperfect); or, was on the way to come to him - a vivid touch conveyed by the change of tense which has been introduced into the text by the Revisers. The summons is met by prompt obedience, and we see it in immediate resolution and activity.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
As soon as she heard that,.... That Christ was come, and inquired for her, and wanted to see her:
she arose quickly, and came unto him; having an equal affection for him as her sister Martha; and which she showed, by leaving her comforters at once, and by making the haste she did, to another and better comforter: both Martha and Mary, out of their great love to Christ, break through the rule for mourners mentioned in note, See Gill on John 11:19, of not going out of the door of the house the first week of mourning.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
29. As soon as she heard that, she arose quickly—affection for her Lord, assurance of His sympathy, and His hope of interposition, putting a spring into her distressed spirit.
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