But Lazarus had died, so He must be telling them and us something different. I rather feel that He was telling them that 'death is not the issue here but the glory of God is,' and in a little while that's exactly what they were going to see.
The Bible tells us that he stayed for a further two days after hearing about Lazarus' sickness, and then returned. By now Lazarus had been dead for four days!
What was happening to Mary and Martha until this time?
Lazarus died, and was buried apparently without being anointed as we'll see later. The funeral had come and gone and they were left in mourning for their beloved brother.
Martha was the first one to rise upon hearing that Jesus was coming. When she saw Him she poured her heart out in grief and judging by the things she said she didn't know Him as well as Mary did.
When their short conversation was over she returned to Mary, and secretly told her: 'The Master is come, and calleth for thee.' She then rose to go to Him followed by her friends thinking she had gone to weep at the grave.
Shortly after Mary met the Lord He gave commandment for the grave to be opened, and the Lord called Lazarus out of death back to life giving instructions to someone to loose him of the grave clothes. Great joy followed!
Now, here comes the part of the account that is absolutely wonderful. Come, and and allow yourself to be drawn into the setting for a while; for there you will discover something precious that will touch the very depths of your soul.
Picture this beautiful scene in your mind -
Everyone is gathered in celebration of Lazarus' restoration. Martha is in the kitchen again but this time, she's not all in a fluster but is found to be serving with joy in her heart no doubt. Lazarus is seated with the Lord along with many others. But where's Mary?
As the guests are reclined in quiet conversation the figure of a woman appears in the doorway silhouetted by the light outside. She has a small pot of sweet smelling fragrance in her hands. She pauses for a moment of time before coming forward to her beloved Lord with fixed purpose.
When she reaches Him, there are tears streaming down her face. She opens the pot of oil and pours out it's fragrant contents mingling it with her tears, anointing His head and His feet drying them with her hair.
Her extravagant act of pure devotion is instantly misunderstood by Judas, the betrayer, and the Lord rebukes him revealing to us something of the insight that this woman had that others didn't possess: