Summary: This lesson takes a look at the raising of Lazarus from a different perspective that makes it very practical and applicable to today’s experiences.
This may mean the death of me! But it’s not the end of me!
Give honor to God, Pastor, Clergy and all the People of God present and those who are here because you’re curious. I greet you all in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I want to thank you for this privilege to stand before you tonight. My wife sends her blessings and regards as she could not be here tonight. I also want to thank all of Mt Zion who came out to not only support their pastor but to participate in this worship experience.
Read Scripture text:
In our text Jesus gets word that Lazarus, a brother He was especially fond of was very sick. Lazarus was the brother of Mary and Martha. Now Mary (the one who anointed Jesus’s feet with expensive perfume from what the Bible referred to as an alabaster box) She was the one that washed Jesus feet with her tears and dried the with her hair. The Bible teaches us that long hair to a woman is her glory. Therefore, it could be said of Mary that she yielded and surrendered her glory and everything she had that was of value to her to honor Jesus with these things.
I wonder how many of us it could be said, were willing to trade in what we believed were our glorious achievements and all of those things for which we are extremely proud that we have obtained in this life so that Jesus may get the glory out of those things.
Do we use them in such ways that (like Mary) it is obvious to all others that these things are totally surrendered to Jesus for His use and for his glory and not our own.
When we earn a degree, does God get the glory, When we get a promotion does God get the glory, When we’re blessed with a new house, car, clothing etc. Does God get the glory? please, by all means don’t give it if you don’t really want to. It’s just a waste of your time. God loves cheerful givers. Like Mary, He’s looking for people who He doesn’t have to beg to render themselves and all they have to Him. Mary freely gave of what she had without reservation inspite of the criticism and the jeering. In spite of the cost she was willing to give all she had to honor Him who had been so gracious unto her.
Believe it or not these things are the easiest to give unto the Lord. To give of our earthly possessions and our time, talents and gifts. These should really be like second nature to us. Our Love for Jesus really begins to show when He asks us for something more than these things. Something like ourselves.
I beseech you therefore brethren by the mercies of god that you present your bodies as a living sacrifice Holy and acceptable unto God which is your reasonable service and be not conformed to this world but be you transformed by the renewing of your mind so that you might prove what is good and acceptable and perfect will of God for you.
Maybe there are those of you who are here today and you have done well to give unto the Lord of the material things for which He has blessed you with. Maybe you have even given of your time, talent and spiritual gifts. However you have probably reached a point in your life where you have hit a desolate place. A very dry and deserted place. It’s uncomfortable and it’s painful and it’s not by any means a place you want to stay. It seems as if you can’t hear from God. It seems as if you are miles away from Him.
Not even coming to church Sunday after Sunday seems to be able to empower and invigorate you the way it once did in years past. I’ve come to let you know that the reason is because you are ill. God has allowed a spiritual sickness to come into you’re life. But don’t you worry He is in full control of the situation. You see in spite of what it looks like and what it feels like, this sickness is not to end in a physical death. It’s just so that He can get the Glory out of you’re life. Look at you’re neighbor and tell them
“This may mean the death of me, but it won’t be the end of me.”
You see many times throughout the Bible God has illustrated to us that sometimes He creates things from nothing Genesis (the World) or miracles, Sometimes He creates things from something Genesis (woman) meaning He chooses to use resources which He has already created to bring something else into being.