Summary: When Jesus gives His disciples the authority to "Heal the sick, raise the dead," in Matthew 10:8 I'm not sure that playing loud music is what He had in mind. But the "wailing out the truth" part certainly was.

Part 9 - Matthew 10:5-13 - MUSIC TO RAISE THE DEAD!

"MUSIC TO RAISE THE DEAD", an album from a Christian Rock group called Resurrection startled the Christian world with it's intensity in the 1970's. They did this in a day when many conservative pastors and evangelists actively thundered their warnings from the pulpit against the evils of rock music and satanic drum rhythms. One article I read said that they were the most influential band in Christian music history as they "WAILED OUT THE TRUTH" with Rock and Roll riffs and an intensity and volume that would raise the dead.

When Jesus gives His disciples the authority to "Heal the sick, raise the dead," in Matthew 10:8 I'm not sure that playing loud music is what He had in mind. But the "wailing out the truth" part certainly was. Wail, preach, proclaim - same thing.

Years ago, as a funeral worker I prayed that God would raise people from the dead. I guess it was just to be sure. I wanted to give them every possible chance before putting them into a coffin. I can remember the first time that I had touched a dead body. She was sitting in the living room, curtains draped, with her mouth gaping open. The life that had burned brightly and which had animated this woman through her "three score years and ten" had diminished. Like a breeze that whispers down the street lifting the autumn leaves into the air in its wake, she was gone.

That which a daughter had thought could never be extinguished had passed by, out of reach. The coals could never be fanned into flame again even by the love of a family. Now the only indication of life was the warm afterglow fading from her body in the wake of a heartbeat that only a short time ago had stopped forever.

I'm sorry, but raising the dead interests me. I would love to see this happen. I've heard of people who have prayed for dead bodies and they have been raised, and if my prayers had been answered, an old woman would be alive and many others.

I have some questions about the disciples raising the dead. Why did they have to die in the first place? How dead did they have to be? I mean for how long? Was there a 3 day curfew like with Lazarus? Did flesh come back on bones? What about the guy that was cremated? The mind goes into spasms thinking about the implications of raising the dead. I can handle "cure those with leprosy, and cast out demons." but raising the dead! That blows my mind! That would be amazing!

That's what Jesus told them to do. But then I am left with other questions - did it only apply to them as the 12 disciples? Was it only for a season? Or is the principle there for ALL THOSE WHO FOLLOW CHRIST? Am I able to raise the dead and heal the sick in Jesus Name? Did Judas have this gift (Who prayed for you? Judas. Oh. Back away slowly.)

I suppose you expect me to answer those questions but I can't answer them all and I am left with a healthy wondering. All I can say is that I need to BE OBEDIENT TO CHRIST. For me that means I need to keep praying for sick people to get well, for dead people to be raised and leave the rest to God.

I read in "Christianity Today" that the Rock album called "MUSIC TO RAISE THE DEAD" was "an unflinching commentary on a broken world and its need for Jesus," which "still startles in its power and intensity." The article went on to describe the collection as "a wondrous thing, raw and urgent, literate and poetic, and it stands as a remarkable testament to the power of three chords, a banshee wail, and the truth....The songs address the devastating effects of divorce, racial discrimination, drugs, and casual sex, always with a message of compassion and hope. ... This was music made by real human beings. But always, always, there was hope." HOPE THAT CAN ONLY BE FOUND IN A PERSONAL RELATIONSHIP WITH JESUS CHRIST. That statement describes the Church and what I want my life to proclaim. Well maybe you could leave out the three chords and the banshee wail, but the rest of it pretty well sums it up.

God bless you Church as you live your life in such a way that it is MUSIC TO RAISE THE DEAD.

Pastor Ross

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