Summary: The raising of Lazarus is a testimony to the power of Christ and His ability to rise from the dead.
Sunday, April 12, 1998
Message: Resurrection Sunday
1. The anatomy of a resurrection. John 11:1-44
a. Scene one 11:1-16
Jesus hears of Lazarus’ illness yet purposefully delays till after Lazarus has died
b. Scene two 11:17-37
Jesus interacts with Martha and then Mary who both express faith in Jesus if only he’d been there
c. Scene three 11:38-44
Jesus dramatically calls forth Lazarus from the grave
2. The timing of the resurrection
John 11:45-53 This is the miracle of Jesus which precipitates the plot to kill him by the Jewish rulers
John 12:9-11 The popularity of the Lazarus miracle is so great
that the Jewish leaders even contemplate the murder of
Lazarus to silence the news of Jesus
John 13 The Lazarus miracle is the final miracle John records
before the events of the upper room and trial
3. The purpose of the resurrection
Pastor Steve crystallized my thoughts on this passage on Friday when he reminded me of the words of the religious leaders as they stood round the cross. They said of Jesus that he saved others, but was not able to save himself. As Pastor Steve wisely observed on Friday, the point of their statement was that since Jesus couldn’t save himself, then he also wasn’t able to save others.
But they got it wrong. The whole point of the miracle it seems to me was to show that just as he could save others, he could save himself. The ability to raise from the dead was the crux for belief in these chapters. As people believed that he was able to raise Lazarus that was to be the foundation for belief in Jesus’ own resurrection.
The resurrection is still the crux for belief. Those who would believe in Lazarus’ resurrection would believe in Jesus’ resurrection. Belief in Jesus resurrection now is necessary to experience our own resurrection.
That if you confess with your mouth, Jesus is Lord, and believe
in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.