Summary: This message speaks to the power of Jesus in our lives, his transforming power that is available for us today.
Dead Man Walking
Pastor Glenn Newton 4-9-00
Text: John 11:17-27
JN 11:17 On his arrival, Jesus found that Lazarus had already been in the
tomb for four days. 18 Bethany was less than two miles from Jerusalem, 19 and many
Jews had come to Martha and Mary to comfort them in the loss of their brother. 20
When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went out to meet him, but Mary stayed
JN 11:21 "Lord," Martha said to Jesus, "if you had been here, my brother would not
have died. 22 But I know that even now God will give you whatever you ask."
JN 11:23 Jesus said to her, "Your brother will rise again."
JN 11:24 Martha answered, "I know he will rise again in the resurrection at the last
JN 11:25 Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me
will live, even though he dies; 26 and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.
Do you believe this?"
JN 11:27 "Yes, Lord," she told him, "I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of
God, who was to come into the world."
This morning before you leave this building, I want you to know three things from the
Word of God that we will find in our passage this morning, 1) Jesus has power over
death. 2) Jesus is Life. 3) Those that believe in Christ will never die.
Those are three truths that you can hang your hat on this morning and know are
true and trustworthy.
We know that Jesus’ public ministry lasted around 3 years. That means from the
time he started calling his disciples and when he performed his first miracle at a wedding
until his Death on the Cross, everything in between, all the teachings, all the miracles, all
the travel, the boat trips, the healing of the sick, the healing of the demon possessed, all
these things took place within a three year time frame, and now, in our passage today, and
with what we will discuss for the coming month, we will be focusing on the last few weeks
of his life and ministry on Earth.
You must understand that these Three years of ministry are now coming to a
crescendo, the crowds are getting bigger by the day, the people are flocking to Jesus with
their sick and diseased loved ones, it’s almost the time for the Passover which is the
biggest of the Jewish Holidays, so everybody is coming out of the woodwork for this
week long Celebration. The energy in the air is rising, there’s an expectancy that
something great is going to happen, something divine even.
Have you ever been in a situation where you feel that nervous energy, maybe right
before you had to give a speech in school. I still have cold chills thinking about giving a
speech in school, I was extremely shy in school.
Remember when you knew you wanted to ask your first girlfriend out on a date, or
you knew that guy was finally going to ask you out after waiting for ever, what would you
say? Were you nervous, do you remember the feeling?
How about sharing your faith? It doesn’t get any more nervous than that, does it?
This anticipation was in the air, the people were thronging to him, being drawn to him,
God’s Word does say that “He will draw all men unto himself”.
That’s kind of the background of what’s going on around this story of Jesus and Lazarus.
Jesus was close friends with this family, this man Lazarus and his two sisters Mary and
Martha. When Mary sent word to Jesus that Lazarus was sick, she said it this way,
“Lord, the one you love is sick.” So we get a sense that there was a close friendship
between Christ and this family.
As we read, Lazarus dies before Jesus arrives, in fact, by the time Jesus gets to the home,
He has been dead for Four days. You see Jesus knew this sickness and death would not
end with a funeral, but with a party.
I want you to know something this morning Jesus has Power over Death. Listen
to his words in 11:4-6 JN 11:4 When he heard this, Jesus said, "This sickness will not
end in death. No, it is for God’s glory so that God’s Son may be glorified through it." 5
Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. 6 Yet when he heard that Lazarus was
sick, he stayed where he was two more days.
Now let me tell you that Jesus wasn’t trying to be cruel to this family that he
loved, he just knew what the outcome would be, and this was a miracle that He would