Daily with Jesus, Dec. 8

Daily with Jesus  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  1:00:41
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Jesus Raises Lazarus from the Dead (John 11:1-44).

Until now we have learned that Jesus is the bread of life; Jesus is the water of life, Jesus is the light that shines.
We have also learned that Jesus has power over nature where in many incidents He controlled the nature.
In this chapter, we learn that Jesus gives life. That He has power over life too!
We will also learn that Jesus moves closer to Jerusalem, anticipating His death. So, this is a final move towards Jerusalem where He will be put to death. However, not in the timing of people who reject Him, but according to the timing of the Father.
This story talks about Jesus bringing Lazarus to life.
In John 11:1-4, we learn:
John 11:1–4 CSB
Now a man was sick, Lazarus from Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. Mary was the one who anointed the Lord with perfume and wiped his feet with her hair, and it was her brother Lazarus who was sick. So the sisters sent a message to him: “Lord, the one you love is sick.” When Jesus heard it, he said, “This sickness will not end in death but is for the glory of God, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.”
So what is happening here?
At first there is no relation mentioned between Lazarus, Mary and Martha. But John simply said that there was a man, named Lazarus from Bethany.
This is simply to introduce the event. That is all, later he mentions the relationship between these three.
Bethany is where Jesus spends more time during His final weeks of His life on earth. This place is about 2 kilometers away from Jerusalem.
So this Bethany was also the place where Mary, and her sister Martha lives.
John gives some more information, particularly about Mary who anointed the Lord with perfume and wiped His feet with her hair. This is because the readers of John probably know this place and Mary’s family well.
Then John introduces Lazarus as her brother. And that he was sick.
Notice here, Lazarus, at this point, was not dead yet, he was sick.
So his sisters sent a word to Jesus. They did not ask him to “come,” probably knowing the risk of His coming to this region. And that message they sent has this statement: “Lord, the one you love is sick.”
Most likely he was going to die soon, and so we also see the need for the sisters to send a word for Jesus, hoping that He might save Lazarus.
What was Jesus’ response?
John 11:4 CSB
When Jesus heard it, he said, “This sickness will not end in death but is for the glory of God, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.”
Jesus says that Lazarus’ sickness will not end in death, but in resurrection. And this is going to happen because - the reason or the purpose is that God would receive the glory, and the Son of God, that is, Jesus Christ would also receive the glory through this event.
This should not be understood in the sense - how can God receive glory through the death of Lazarus, but through this death, God’s glory will be revealed!
And how is God going to reveal Himself? Through His Son Jesus Christ.
Let us look at two passages here:
John 1:14, 18
John 1:14 CSB
The Word became flesh and dwelt among us. We observed his glory, the glory as the one and only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.
John 1:18 CSB
No one has ever seen God. The one and only Son, who is himself God and is at the Father’s side—he has revealed him.
God’s revelation takes place through Jesus Christ His Son.
When the word was sent out to Jesus that Lazarus, the one Jesus loves is sick, we would normally expect Jesus leaving right away. But Jesus’ response might seem odd to us.
However, John tells us immediately that Jesus loved Martha, her sister, and Lazarus.
However, notice this. Jesus did not go right away.
In John 11:6
John 11:6 CSB
So when he heard that he was sick, he stayed two more days in the place where he was.
Why? Simply it is not time yet for Him to go! The Father did not tell Him to go yet. So Jesus extended a couple of days.
It may be that this part of the text took four days to complete. That is, the word sent to Jesus - one day, Jesus taking two more days - altogether 3 days, and another day to travel back. In verse 17 we learn that Lazarus was dead for four days.
Why would Jesus delay?
Lazarus was not yet dead. And it is not that Jesus wants to take responsibility for Lazarus’ death. Jesus was about to demonstrate the He is the resurrection and life. Now John, the writer of this Gospel already told us in 1:18, the Jesus Himself is God!
By the delay, Jesus is also going to strengthen the faith of His disciples and those that would be around during the resurrection event of Lazarus.
Then we learn:

Jesus’ Decision to Go to Judea

John 11:7 CSB
Then after that, he said to the disciples, “Let’s go to Judea again.”
Again, means they were in Judea before.
So the disciples protest here - oh no, Lord. Not again. Are you serious? These people just tried to kill you, and you want to go back there again?
John 11:8 CSB
“Rabbi,” the disciples told him, “just now the Jews tried to stone you, and you’re going there again?”
The Judean region was hostile, they were trying to kill Jesus. Yet, Jesus says, let us go there again.
What is the purpose? That God’s glory would be revealed. Nothing is going to stop this from happening.
Jesus then talks about or responds to the disciples about the light in the day. The twelve hours.
John 11:9–10 CSB
“Aren’t there twelve hours in a day?” Jesus answered. “If anyone walks during the day, he doesn’t stumble, because he sees the light of this world. But if anyone walks during the night, he does stumble, because the light is not in him.”
Jesus here is not only talking about the day light - one must do what he needs to do during the day, because when night comes he cannot see anything.
In the same manner, there is a deeper meaning here. Not mystical meaning, but we should understand this in connection with Jesus teaching the people that He is the Light.
In this sense, Jesus is saying, as long as I am here I must use my time as the Father intended, because I am safe. Nothing happens to me as long as I follow the Father’s will. So the disciples, likewise should do the work of the Lord. Because when darkness comes, it will be complicated for them to do the work of the Lord. They stumble.
After this, Jesus tells the disciples that Lazarus was dead.
John 11:11–15 CSB
He said this, and then he told them, “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep, but I’m on my way to wake him up.” Then the disciples said to him, “Lord, if he has fallen asleep, he will get well.” Jesus, however, was speaking about his death, but they thought he was speaking about natural sleep. So Jesus then told them plainly, “Lazarus has died. I’m glad for you that I wasn’t there so that you may believe. But let’s go to him.”

Jesus, The Resurrection and the Life

Now we learn that Jesus came to Bethany.
By the time He came, Lazarus was dead for four days. Before he was sick, now he was dead, and that too, for four days.
Martha heard that Jesus was in town. So she went to meet Jesus and said:
John 11:21–22 CSB
Then Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother wouldn’t have died. Yet even now I know that whatever you ask from God, God will give you.”
Look at Martha’s faith.
First she said it would have been otherwise if you were here Lord - my brother wouldn’t have died.
Yet I know that whatever you ask from God, God will give you.
What is she saying? If you ask God, my brother would be back? Or is she simply recognizing the intimate relationship that Jesus has with His Father?
I think the second one is right.
However, verse 39 tells us that Martha thinks it is not possible for Lazarus to come back because his body stinks.
Jesus says:
John 11:23 CSB
“Your brother will rise again,” Jesus told her.
Martha says,
John 11:24 CSB
Martha said to him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.”
What was Martha thinking? Yes, she was right, that the resurrection will take place on the last day. This is what Judaism believes about resurrection.
However, Jesus was not talking about the last day resurrection, He was talking about immediate resurrection!
In John 11:25-26
John 11:25–26 CSB
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me, even if he dies, will live. Everyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?”
Martha, you are right in saying that the resurrection takes place on the last day (5:21, and 6:39-40)
John 6:39–40 CSB
This is the will of him who sent me: that I should lose none of those he has given me but should raise them up on the last day. For this is the will of my Father: that everyone who sees the Son and believes in him will have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.”
But Jesus is not talking about this last day resurrection.
He wants Martha to focus on something. That He is the resurrection. He wants her to see that since He is the resurrection, He alone can provide life!
Eternal life is not provided outside of Him. It is only provided in and through Him! Jesus is LIFE!
Death is going to happen to all humanity, but the one who believes in me, even though he dies in flesh, he will still live! This is what Jesus gives - the eternal life!
Then we see:

The Confession of Martha

Jesus asks Martha - “Do you believe this?”
Martha responds:
John 11:27 CSB
“Yes, Lord,” she told him, “I believe you are the Messiah, the Son of God, who comes into the world.”

Jesus was Troubled and Moved Deeply in His Spirit

Jesus get’s angry in these verses!
Now, Martha goes back to Mary, and informs her that the Teacher is here. Mary comes to Jesus, falls at His feet and says: “Lord, if you had been here, my brother wouldn’t have died” in verse 32.
When He saw the crying, He was troubled - he got angry!
Why? Because of the unbelief! They have not come to see who Jesus is, not believe in the works of the Father! Jesus revealed the Father in many occasions! Yet, they remain in unbelief!
This is what caused Jesus to get angry! He wasn’t crying, as the next verse says that Lazarus was dead, because He was about to raise him up from the dead.
The problem here again is their unbelief.

Jesus Raises Lazarus from the Dead

After this incident we learn that Jesus came to the tomb, and commanded them to remove the stone.
However, Martha says: Lord, his body smells; it has been four days.
But Jesus reminds Martha about something here:
John 11:40 CSB
Jesus said to her, “Didn’t I tell you that if you believed you would see the glory of God?”
Then Jesus thanks the Father.
What was this about? Thanking that He was about to raise Lazarus? Or that the people around them would see God’s power and believe in God? Yes. Verse. 42 says this.
John 11:41–42 CSB
So they removed the stone. Then Jesus raised his eyes and said, “Father, I thank you that you heard me. I know that you always hear me, but because of the crowd standing here I said this, so that they may believe you sent me.”
Finally Jesus calls out with a loud voice: Lazarus, come out!
And there is Lazarus - he was raised from the dead.

What can we learn?

The whole passage is about telling us that Jesus is the Resurrection and Life.
He raises the dead and gives life.
God’s glory is manifested in this act through Jesus Christ.
Is there a relation between this event and the resurrection of Jesus Christ?
Jesus would be put to death as well, but He will rise again. Death shall not and cannot hold Him.
If you believe in this Resurrection and the Life, that is Jesus Christ, you will have eternal life.
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