Raised Like Lazarus: John 11:1-46

I found it quite smug of Jesus how He spoke to me this morning. I use a bunch of different Bibles and am all over the place in them. As I asked my daughter to go get my black Bible on the shelf, I opened to where it was book marked, which was John Chapter 11: The Death and Resurrection of Lazarus. It is as if God is reminding me even today to not forget the power of resurrection that He holds. Easter comes and goes, and we all get back into the routines of life, but God was quick to point out to me this morning, remember you death and the new life you have in me, be sure to keep it at the center of your life. Yes, crosses will come in our life, but the empty tomb is close by. When Mary and Martha both spoke with Jesus they were sad because it seemed to them as though Jesus was too slow in getting there, he could of prevented their brother’s death, but Jesus was about to prove them wrong. Isn’t it true in our own lives; we often asked God what is taking him so long when we are going through something hard, and it just seems like things are going from bad to worse, and we wonder if things will ever get better? Many times God makes us wait so our faith and trust will grow stronger; then when he does move, in his perfect time and in his perfect way, it is so mind-blowing to us that we can’t help but testify of what He did! Isn’t that what He wants, to have us give Him all the Glory of what He does in and through our lives so that others will believe!

Seeing how distraught Mary was in v.33, he goes to Lazarus’s tomb and also weeps for him, for he loved him. This really stood out to me, because Jesus weeps for all of us. He wants all of us to reach our full potential in life; not just worldly successes, but he wants us to reap a spiritual harvest for his kingdom. He gives us all spiritual gifts and He wants us to be participants in his great redeeming work, what a privilege! But in v. 37, some bystanders doubted, remembering how he opened the blind man’s eyes, and wondered why He could not save Lazarus,(so many today, have this same level of doubt, not fully understanding and believing in the power that God hold in their own lives); but Jesus speaking to Mary and reminds her in v. 40 “Did I not say to you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?” Jesus then thanks his father for hearing his prayer and allowing him to display his power and glory so that they may believe that God sent him. Jesus then cries out in a loud voice “Lazarus, come forth”, Lazarus is quickly unbound and let go. At this, many believed, but some went to the Pharisees and told them the things which Jesus had done.

Jesus over and over in His Word reminds us that if we just have faith, we will see great things happen. Faith is a verb, it is an action, it takes practice, and it takes belief in how we see God, who we believe him to be and what we believe he is capable of doing. Do we believe he can do miracles today, or was that just in Bible times? I’m here to tell you that He still works mighty miracles today! He cries out to each of us in a loud voice as he did to Lazarus, “Come Forth”, it is a command; will you obey it? Will you believe? Will you go to God, as Jesus did, and pray for belief in the midst’s of your own circumstances? And then thanking him for what He can do! God wants to do get things in your life, He wants to show you His power and glory, but you must put your trust in Him, you must believe that he is the same yesterday, today and forever (Hebrews 13:8).

There is probably more I could dissect in this passage, but I think this is enough for now. It has served for me a reminder of all that He has “raised” me out of in my own life, and how I look forward in my waiting of what He will do next, so that I can testify of his goodness. I pray that whoever reads this will be encouraged to spend some time with Jesus and pray for greater faith in who He is and what He can do. I pray that your faith will not only increase, but you will begin to see Jesus in a new way, that you will not just read about Jesus in the Bible, and the stories that surround him, but that you would enter into the Bible and it would become real to you, and that you will hear God speak to you through the Holy Spirit. Lord, may you have your way, may eyes and ears be opened, and may people come to know you in a more personal way than ever before. I know that you call them, and I believe for each one who reads this that you will do a mighty work in their lives so that they can too, testify of your great love. I pray this forth in Jesus’ name, Amen!