I love the story about Lazarus in the Bible. You know it, don’t you?
Lazarus died. Word came to Jesus. Lazarus and his sisters, Mary and Martha, were good friends of Jesus. They had seen him heal the sick. Lepers had been cured. The dead had been raised. So they knew that if Jesus could get there, Lazarus could be healed. Instead, Jesus held off. He waited.
And Lazarus died.
Jesus waited a bit longer. Then he looked at the disciples and said, “Let’s go.” He arrived on the scene after Lazarus had been buried. He had been in the tomb for four days. He was troubled by the condition everyone was in. So, he said to show him the tomb.
What did Jesus do? He said to roll the tomb away. Imagine what they were thinking. The smell coming from the tomb would be horrible. But they did it. They did as Jesus said. They rolled the stone away.
What did Jesus do? He said, “Lazarus, come forth.”
And Lazarus came forth. And God was glorified.
Let me tell you what Lazarus didn’t do.
Lazarus did not say to himself, “I’m pretty comfortable with my situation right now. I think I’ll stay here a while until Jesus comes back some other time.”
Lazarus did not say, “I’m ok being dead. I’ll just stay where I’m at. I don’t need to come forth.”
Lazarus came alive and came out of the tomb.
Because Jesus commanded him to come alive and come forth.
Before Christ, you and I were dead in our trespasses and sins. We were stone cold dead. It was as if we were drowned on the bottom of a lake. Jesus dove into the water, swam to the bottom where we were and pulled us out. He breathed new life into us.
He didn’t ask us if we wanted to be rescued.
He didn’t ask us if wanted to be saved.
He didn’t ask us if we wanted to live.
He made us alive.
We don’t have the ability to save ourselves. Dead people can’t make choices on whether to live. Only God can make that choice. He rescues who He rescues. He makes alive who He makes alive. Christ didn’t tell the entire cemetery to come forth. Only Lazarus.
Are you and I more powerful than Lazarus?
Do you ever wonder what you should do as a follower of Christ?
I know that some people will tell you that you need to be at church on Sunday morning, Sunday night and Wednesday night. Maybe you should, but I don’t think those are the primary things you should do.
Here is what I think you should do if you are a Christian.
You should not retreat into some holy, Christian ghetto. You should go. Where to? Wherever. You cannot make disciples if you aren’t going about your business. Go out into the world. Meet people. Build relationships. Share the Gospel. Live it.
Yes, we should love everyone. Specifically here I am talking about other believers and followers. Jesus said that the world would know that we are His disciples if we have love for one another. That means brothers and sisters in Christ. That means you are going to have to meet with them regularly. So do it. And love each other.
John writes in his Gospel that he wrote it so that we would believe and have life. He wanted us to live. Christ came so that we could not just have eternal life, but abundant life. That isn’t something that is in the future. It’s now. So live. Enjoy your orange juice and drink it to the glory of God. Why? Because you can. Live!!!
How about you? Are you going, loving and living?
I want to begin today’s post with a picture. I’ll be back with you in just a moment.
I saw this sign as I was running with my daughter on Friday. At first I chuckled about how cheap the sign looked. As I continued past it, though, I couldn’t get this sign out of my mind. Slowly, I began to see the genius of it. Then I thought about it in terms of my faith in Christ and realized that it was a great picture of what Christ has done with me.
FREE!!! The gift of life that Christ gives us is free…..to us. It cost Him His life, but for us the gift of God, eternal life, is free. That is much better that gaining the wages of sin, Death, isn’t it?
LIVE!!! Christ came to give us life. Not just any old life. Eternal life. Abundant life. That means that life is lot more, well, LIVE now. It doesn’t mean that I just got my ticket punched for heaven. It means that everything is more LIVE here now. Faith? Live. Family? Live. Football? Live. Foolishness? Live. It’s all LIVE now.
MUSIC!!! In Ephesians, Paul said that we should speak to each other in psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. We should talk to each other in music. A group of friends and I who used to go to break together would sometimes break out in spontaneous hymns or gospel songs. I thought it was strange at first. I’ve come to realize that this is how we, as believers, are wired. To sing songs about our Lord to each other. It doesn’t matter if we can sing well or not. We should just be singing the new song He has placed within our hearts.
Now, here is the best thing. The sign above said that the Free Live Music was from 8:00 to 11:00. Our Free Live Music doesn’t stop. It’s eternal. It never stops.
Do you have Free Live Music in your life? Do you know someone who needs it?