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FOUR OUTLOOKS ABOUT DEATH                                            John 11

Background: The time for Jesus death on the cross is drawing near.                   He escaped stoning at the Feast of Dedication (Hanukkah) by supernaturally passing through the crowd. (10:22-42)                                                              

At the beginning of chapter 11, Jesus and His disciples are staying somewhere near Jerusalem.                                                                                         

He receives word that his dear friend, Lazarus, is gravely ill.

Lazarus: Abbreviated version of Eleazar;   (Whom God Helps)                                       He had two sisters, Mary and Martha                                                          

The family supported Jesus’ ministry                                                   

Mary anointed the feet of Jesus with an expensive flask of oil                    M

artha was the first to meet Jesus on His way to the house and expressed her faith in His power. She next rant to tell Mary "The Master has come…" 

OUTLOOKS:   FORWARD    FAITHFUL    FUTURE    FINISHED

 

1. FORWARD  (14-15)  14Then Jesus said to them plainly, “Lazarus is dead. 15And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, that you may believe. Nevertheless let us go to him.” Jesus had received word about Lazarus's illness, but he tarried two more days after he had heard it.       Why? Lazarus was already dead. Why was Jesus glad" He was certain of the outcome.                       

 Jesus statement was that life would be the victor, not death.

Application: While it obviously pained Him that Lazarus died, he looked forward to the outcome.

PS 116:15 Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints.

We need to be realistic in our outlook. Having hope is not being unrealistic but knowing that Heaven is real, Christ is real, God is real, and Judgment is real.

 

2.  FAITHFUL (16)  16Then Thomas, who is called Didymus, said to his fellow disciples, “Let us also go, that we may die with Him.” (Didymus = Twin)

Some feel that he was a twin of Matthew since they were called together and are often linked together. However, many feel he was called Twin because he resembled Jesus and was mistaken for Him, and why he felt he would die.

Some may feed he was pessimistic. In light of other statements Thomas made, it would not be out of character for him to be pessimistic about the outcome.

Thomas’ statement showed faith in the face of death..

Application: God has not called us to be pessimistic in our attitudes, but faithful. You cannot be pessimistic and faithful at the same time.

 

 

3.  FUTURE (24)   24Martha said to Him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day

Resurrection vs Reincarnation

Jesus challenges Martha not to a debate, but to belief

Martha’s statement showed faith of future resurrection after death

After Martha told Christ and herself what was in her heart, she went to the house to tell Mary, "The Master has come and is calling for you."

Application: We have every reason to be optimistic about the future. Martha's statement of faith in the future still rings true today.  It's that's "I KNOW."

2 Tim 1:12 "..for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day."

 

4.  FINISHED  (40)

40Jesus said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?”

JJesus is fully capable of this miracle without the belief of the Martha or Mary. But if they would not believe, then they would never see the glory of God. They could see the end results and be happy in that, but they would miss the glory of working together with God in the accomplishing of His plan.

Jesus' statement showed the finished product of our faith: Glory of God.

Application: Jesus wants us to have life abundantly. We cannot do that with a life filled with doubt. "…that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, 8whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, 9receiving the end of your faith—the salvation of your souls." 1 Peter 1:7-9

The Invitation  John 11:28 "The Master has come and is calling for you."

The call is given. The choice is ours.