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Jesus wept (Greek: ἐδάκρυσεν ὁ Ἰησοῦς) is a phrase famous for being the shortest verse in the King James Version of the Bible, as well as many other versions,though it is not the shortest in the original languages. It is found in the Gospel of John, chapter 11, verse 35.
- Weeping demonstrates that Christ was indeed a true man, with real bodily functions (such as tears, sweat, blood, eating and drinking—note, for comparison, the emphasis laid on Jesus’ eating during the post-resurrection appearances). His emotions and reactions were real; Christ was not an illusion or spirit (seeDocetism). Pope Leo I referred to this passage when he discussed the two natures of Jesus: "In his humanity Jesus wept for Lazarus; in his divinity he raised him from the dead."
- The sorrow, sympathy, and compassion Jesus felt for all mankind.
- The rage he felt against the tyranny of death over mankind.
- Although the bystanders interpreted his weeping to mean that Jesus was sorrowful for the fact that Lazarus had died (verse 36), Witness Lee considers this to be unreasonable, given Jesus’ intention to resurrect Lazarus. Lee argues instead that every person to whom Jesus talked in John 11 (his disciples, Martha, Mary, and the Jews) was blinded by their misconceptions. Thus he "groaned in his spirit" because even those who were closest to him failed to recognize that he was, as he declared in verse 26, "the resurrection and the life". Finally, at the graveside, he "wept in sympathy with their sorrow over Lazarus’s death".