Friday, March 1, 2013

John 11 & The Love of Jesus

In the ancient setting of John 11, we see a lifestyle as one of dusty roads, community wells — and burial tombs.

Of course, in our heads we know the joyful days, and the hard days, came pre-air conditioning, pre-Kleenex, pre-running water — pre-caskets and burial vaults. It was a time before funeral homes and morticians. It was an era when loved ones prepared the bodies of their dead.

We see sisters Mary and Martha broken over the death of their brother, Lazarus. If Jesus had been by their brother’s side, they simply knew, Lazarus would have lived. They understood the power of their Teacher, their Lord. They worshiped and loved Jesus.

Read John 11, looking closely at verse 33.

In verse 33, the Bible tells us, when Jesus saw Mary of Bethany weeping over the loss of her brother, and some other Jews also with her weeping, “he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled.”

Have you wept? Have you lost a Lazarus?

Jesus did. The Bible says so in v. 35. Some Jews with Mary and Martha, seeing how Jesus reacted, were moved enough by the evidence of his affection for Lazarus that they acknowledged it aloud. In verse 36 they said, “See how he loved him!”

Now, Hebrews 13:8 says, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.”

So if Jesus knew Martha’s and Mary’s pain, he knows ours, too. He’s just as all-seeing, just as all-knowing, just as compassionate today as ever.

Yet, doubters and scoffers pop up everywhere, don’t they?

The same was true for other Jews present to witness the mourning of Mary, Martha, Jesus and other Jews. Verse 37 says, “But some of them said, “Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from dying?”

Who will I be? Who will you be?

Life in this world comes with trials; God tells us that plain and simple.

However, I can, and you can, choose the best perspective. One of trust. Of assurance.

So, I will rest in Him, knowing – at least trying to know - if I am grieving a person, blessing or gift, God, too, is deeply moved in spirit and troubled.

Of course, I will still weep and wail, feel pain deeply. A healthy perspective includes in the life equation, trust for a God who loves us, and sees what we cannot. I’ll try to include that factor in times of shock and disappointment. I  pray He helps me remember. God sees the whys. The hows. The eternal perspective.

See how He loves us!

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