Jesus responded, "Didn't I tell you that you would see God's glory if you believe?" John 11:40
When we pray, I imagine that if God were to speak out loud to us, He would often say, "You are thinking too small. If only you could see what I have planned for you and your life!" You see, with our limited vision, we can only see so well. God sees the future with perfect vision. And, many times, He is doing something so much bigger in the background that we could ever imagine. This was the case with the life of Lazarus in John 11, and this is the case with your life and mine.
Today we conclude reading about the lives of Mary, Martha, and Lazarus. The last few days have been somber, yet hopeful, as we have looked at the confusion the sisters felt as they saw their brother die when Jesus could have healed him. Today, what we are reading is full of hope. John 11:38 begins with Jesus going to Lazarus' tomb and asking for the stone that was covering up the tomb to be removed. Martha told Jesus that since Lazarus had been dead for four days, the tomb would smell very badly. Jesus then said to her, "Didn't I tell you that you would see God's glory if you believe?" (verse 40). You see, earlier on in John 11, Jesus told her that this story would not end in death, but resurrection. And He was about to back up His statement with proof. He commanded Lazarus to walk up out of his grave, and he walked right out. You see, in asking for healing for Jesus, Mary and Martha were asking too small. They wanted healing for Lazarus. God wanted to perform a resurrection that would lead people to Him. Lazarus did, indeed, experience a resurrection. As a result of his resurrection, many people placed their faith in Jesus (verse 44).
What are you hoping for God to do in your life? Are you believing God to work in big, resurrection, kind of ways, or are you thinking too small? In your monsoon, do you trust that God is working in bigger ways than you can imagine and that He can redeem anything? What if our time in quarantine was an opportunity for a resurrection? What if God put us in this place so we would actually slow down to take Him seriously? My friend, He can, and He is doing bigger things in your life than you could ever imagine.
Spend time today praying to God. Tell Him the difficulties, hardships, and trials you are facing, and then ask Him to work in your life. But ask Him to work in His way and His timing. Ask Him to do something even bigger than you could dream. Don't just ask for healing; ask for a resurrection.
Read John 11:38-57 (NLT)
Jesus was still angry as he arrived at the tomb, a cave with a stone rolled across its entrance. “Roll the stone aside,” Jesus told them.
But Martha, the dead man’s sister, protested, “Lord, he has been dead for four days. The smell will be terrible.”
Jesus responded, “Didn’t I tell you that you would see God’s glory if you believe?” So they rolled the stone aside. Then Jesus looked up to heaven and said, “Father, thank you for hearing me. You always hear me, but I said it out loud for the sake of all these people standing here, so that they will believe you sent me.” Then Jesus shouted, “Lazarus, come out!” And the dead man came out, his hands and feet bound in graveclothes, his face wrapped in a headcloth. Jesus told them, “Unwrap him and let him go!”
Many of the people who were with Mary believed in Jesus when they saw this happen. But some went to the Pharisees and told them what Jesus had done. Then the leading priests and Pharisees called the high council together. “What are we going to do?” they asked each other. “This man certainly performs many miraculous signs. If we allow him to go on like this, soon everyone will believe in him. Then the Roman army will come and destroy both our Temple and our nation.”
Caiaphas, who was high priest at that time, said, “You don’t know what you’re talking about! You don’t realize that it’s better for you that one man should die for the people than for the whole nation to be destroyed.”
He did not say this on his own; as high priest at that time he was led to prophesy that Jesus would die for the entire nation. And not only for that nation, but to bring together and unite all the children of God scattered around the world.
So from that time on, the Jewish leaders began to plot Jesus’ death. As a result, Jesus stopped his public ministry among the people and left Jerusalem. He went to a place near the wilderness, to the village of Ephraim, and stayed there with his disciples.
It was now almost time for the Jewish Passover celebration, and many people from all over the country arrived in Jerusalem several days early so they could go through the purification ceremony before Passover began. They kept looking for Jesus, but as they stood around in the Temple, they said to each other, “What do you think? He won’t come for Passover, will he?” Meanwhile, the leading priests and Pharisees had publicly ordered that anyone seeing Jesus must report it immediately so they could arrest him.
©2022 Sagebrush Church