There was a place in Bethany where Jesus often retreated. It was the home of three siblings—Mary, Martha, and Lazarus. By all accounts, this is where Jesus went to refresh and reinvigorate himself. The chief priests made plans to kill Lazarus as well as Jesus for he was the reason many of the Jews were going over to Jesus and believing in him. Lazarus was there to talk with Jesus, to reflect with Jesus, and to process life’s most significant events.

But where was Lazarus at the crucifixion? Knowing the pain of death, why didn’t Lazarus demonstrate any solidarity with Christ—which he had so often done—when Christ needed him most?

Have you ever felt like that? Abandoned? Even if you knew why, even if you were the one who sent them away, have you ever felt so alone?

And regretted it?

Lazarus isolated Jesus.

How can we possibly imagine Christ has born our sin, without first understanding what it means for him to have been sinned against? He absolved Lazarus, and the others who sinned against him, saying: “Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.” He wasn’t ignorant of their crimes, nor unaffected. He was despised and rejected.

And yet he forgave.

Adapted from Dying for a Fix