Bahan Alkitab: John 11:1-44
Jesus Raises Lazarus
Lazarus was the brother of Mary and Martha who lived in a village called Bethany. Jesus first visited Mary and Martha after his transfiguration. Remember the story that Martha was so busy serving and Mary sat quietly listening to Jesus’s teaching and then Martha complained to Jesus? Not long after that Lazarus was ill. So the sisters sent messages to Jesus that Lazarus was ill. But when Jesus heard it He said, “This illness does not lead to death. It is for the glory of God, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.” – John 11:4
The Son of God would be glorified through what happened to Lazarus:
· The miracle displays the glory of God (who alone can raise the dead), because Jesus is the life and resurrection.
· This event initiate events leading to the cross. The cross is the place where the Son of God is humiliated but also glorified because His holy sacrifice is accepted by God and He is seated at the right hand of God the Father.
The resurrection of Lazarus from the dead is the final miracle before the cross, to signify that Jesus is the true God. It is also to strengthen the disciples’ faith that Jesus Christ is the Messiah, the promised Saviour, and Son of God. It is very important at that moment of time that the disciples’ faith is strengthened because Jesus would leave the world soon and they would carry on Jesus’ work in the world by preaching the gospel, proclaiming the only way to salvation is through Jesus Christ.
Lazarus was already 4 days in the tomb when Jesus arrived (one day for the journey of the messengers from Bethany to Jesus, the two days when Jesus remained where He was, and a day for Jesus’ journey to Bethany). Many Jews believed that the soul remained near the body for three days after death in the hope of returning to it. If this idea was in the minds of the people around Mary and Martha, they obviously thought all hope was gone, Lazarus was permanently dead.
When Martha went out to meet Jesus, she said “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that whatever you ask from God, God will give you.”
Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.”
Martha said to him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day.”
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?” – John 11:25-26
Here, Jesus proclaimed He is the resurrection and the life. There are no religion founders who proclaimed they are the resurrection or they are the life. Jesus is the only One who said it and He was about to perform a miracle that showed He is the resurrection and the life! That He has power over death and has the power to give eternal life to all who believe in Him. Because Jesus knows He is to accomplish God’s salvation plan. He knew after raising Lazarus from the dead, He would be on His way to Jerusalem, to accomplish God’s plan on the cross, to die for us as our substitute.
Only through the cross there is salvation. Salvation is fully and perfectly accomplished in Jesus Christ (through Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross).
Man, by his fall, became ignorant, guilty, and sinful.
· Ignorant: man doesn’t have true knowledge because human reasoning has been polluted by sin, the way of thinking has been polluted by sin, no longer care about true knowledge of God, but rely on own understanding and knowledge.
· Guilty: man doesn’t obey and carry out God’s law and commandments anymore.
· Sinful: man doesn’t live a holy life anymore but following own lustful desires.
Man can be saved only when:
· This ignorance is replaced by true knowledge
· The guilt replaced by righteousness
· The sinfulness by holiness
Conversion of a lost sinner:
· We must know that none can teach us except Christ, by His Word and Holy Spirit. We must know our own sin and misery, and the work of Christ as the only remedy.
o Our ignorance removed by His Word
· We must realise our need for the cleansing blood of Christ and that Christ’s sacrifice is sufficient.
o Our guilt removed by His sacrificial blood
· We must cease to live a life of slavery to sin by receiving Christ.
o Our sinful desires brought more and more under His ruling power.
· In other words, we are saved only if, and when, Christ alone becomes our prophet, priest and king.
o Our feelings, our will, along with our knowledge are changed.
· Do you want to accept the teaching of Christ?
· Do you realise that you need the cleansing blood of Christ?
· Do you want to cease life of slavery to sin?
· Do you want to exercise of discipline, allowing Christ to govern every aspect of your life as your king?
We praise Jesus because He is the king of our life. We praise Him not because not only he did something good for us, but he gives us life. He is the eternal king, the righteous king, who has eternal power. On the second coming of Christ there will be resurrected body. We will be resurrected with a perfect body in eternity with God, but until then, we are to live our lives as faithful followers of Christ and glorifying God.
“I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?”