LAZARUS HAS BEEN RAISED FROM THE DEAD!
LAZARUS HAS COME TO LIFE!
JESUS HAS PERFORMED A MIRACLE!
Imagine the resurrection of Lazarus occurring in our no-holds barred tell everything social media society. Oh, how the twitter birdie would be singing and the hashtags flying. . . . .
- Martha warns of stench. Jesus is not deterred! Lazarus lives!#stenchovercome #Christunafraid
- Jesus frees Lazarus from the tomb! Death clothes peeled! #rollingstones #outfitchanged
Not to mention the status updates that would be popping up on facebook pages all over Bethany . . . .
- He seems better than before and I sure didn’t notice any smell! 🙂 –feeling happy
- Saw Lazarus and Jesus today. Both seemed in good Spirit. –with Mary and Martha
Funny thing is that even though the internet was still far off, news of the miracle spread! It must’ve been all the buzz at the market place, at the synagogue, and around every Jewish supper table. We get our information from the Apostle John and it’s guaranteed to be truth so we don’t even have to visit snopes.com to see if it’s myth or urban legend. In fact, the passage in John 11 and 12 is so chocked full of truth that there is absolutely no way to look at it all in this small little blog entry. So as always I’m encouraging you to go and read the whole thing and count on God to show your heart more and more.
When I’m leading a Bible study and I have a lot of stuff I want to share, I quite often tell the sweet Sisters who are with me what “I won’t be talking about” that night. So if we were actually sitting face-to-face with the Bible in our hands, I might say something like “I was really torn tonight. I thought about pointing out the way the Scripture specifically tells us how much Jesus loves Mary, Martha, and Lazarus before it notes “So, when he heard that Lazarus was ill, he stayed two days longer in the place where he was.” At a cursory read we might think the two verses don’t fit too well together. But might it be that His love for them was the very thing that prompted Him to give these three dear friends, the ones He held in loving esteem, the opportunity to believe Him more and take part in glorifying the Father? Could the same be true of us? Might it be that the purpose in the wait from time to time is so that we might have a part in pointing the eyes of those around us toward heaven?”
Or I might have chosen “not to talk about ” Christ, who was about to raise a man from the dead, having those around Him roll away the stone and remove the death clothes binding Lazarus. He could’ve just pointed at the stone and told it to move. He could have disintegrated those linen strips with a Word. Instead, He chose to let others be involved in shining the light into that very dark tomb and give them a role in setting the dead man free. Sister, what kind of a privilege would it be to be known as a “stone roller” in the lives of those around us? And how honored would we feel if we were given the assignment of peeling away the death linens so our friends, family, and neighbors could walk freely in the Truth?
And, of course the last thing that wouldn’t be discussed is Jesus calling Lazarus to life by NAME. Oh, don’t you love to entertain the idea of what it must be like to hear LOVE say your name. Maybe we’ll hear that very thing when we finally look Grace in the face. And maybe it will sound something like this
“Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name;
and you are mine.”
Isaiah 43:1 NIV, 1984
Dear One, I so pray you take Him at His Word. This is personal to Him and it’s meant for you. Hear His heart . . . “Don’t be afraid Bunny. I have rescued you and called you out of your sin. You belong to me. I won’t let you go.” Now, you do it:
“Don’t be afraid _________.
I have rescued you
and called you out of your sin.
You belong to me.
I won’t let you go.”
Doesn’t that give you glory bumps? Hear Him speaking right to you?
So if these are all the things we wouldn’t be chatting about, what in the world would we be considering? Well, it would be those tweets and those status updates that would have our attention. It would be the news spreading from ear-to-ear that would be at the center of our discussion. Why? Because people of all kinds are going to hear about the miracle Jesus performed in your life. They will be absolutely a twitter about the new life that they see in you. You will be modern day evidence of the miracle. Living proof that Christ still raises people from the dead. Indisputable confirmation that the Author of Life still revives hearts today.
The change in you, the transformation from walking dead to abundant life, will be beautiful. Your entire life will be a testimony to His power, just like the life of Lazarus. So, what of Lazarus the man brought to life in full view of those who believed and those who did not?
When the large crowd of the Jews learned that Jesus was there,
they came, not only on account of him
but also to see Lazarus, whom he had raised from the dead.
So the chief priests made plans to put Lazarus to death as well,
because on account of him many of the Jews
were going away and believing in Jesus.
John 12:9-10 (ESV)
That’s right. The last mention we have of Lazarus in the Bible is under the heading “The Plot to Kill Lazarus” and the truth is, the headline over your life, if you are a believer, is similar. Beloved, don’t you dare think for one moment that your enemy does not notice the difference you are making in the world around you. Don’t you let yourself believe for an iota that living out the miracle every day is of no significance. You may not be under the threat of flogging or crucifixion but the battle that rages is real. The arrows slung in your direction may take the form of isolation, cruel words, and intimidation, but believe me when I tell you based on God’s exhortations to be aware, to be suited for battle, to be alert that they are part and parcel of “The Plot to Kill the Miracle.” There is no doubt that your enemy, the devil prowls like a lion looking for someone to devour. That’s truth, flat out.
But Girlfriend, here’s the bigger truth– the One who redeemed you, the One who called you by name, is not about to let you go. FEAR NOT, the will of the Lion of Judah will prevail. The Miracle will live! And live to the full. He has summoned you by name, and YOU ARE HIS!
And just as certainly as the news of new life could not be contained in Bethany, news of your transformation will spread like wildfire. I find that to be worth a status update. Maybe even a change in my relationship status ♥– feeling loved.