Dear fellow disciple-maker,
This newsletter is the third article in a three part series on John 11. Go to Part 1.
If a car can run out of gas, a person can run out of hope. That is what happened to Mary and Martha in John 11. Mary and Martha, two of Jesus' dearest friends, sent a urgent plea for Jesus to come to the aid of their brother Lazarus. By the time Jesus arrived on the scene Lazarus had been dead for four days. Mary and Martha felt helpless and hopeless. But they were about to discover that when Jesus is your friend, there is hope for any situation.
When faced with the reality of their brother's death, their perspective was completely reasonable and totally logical. They truly believed there was no hope. Jesus reminded them that since He is the resurrection and the life, there is always hope. He promised Martha that her brother would rise again. Martha agreed that her brother will rise again, but that day seemed like a long way off. To prove there was still hope, Jesus asked where they had laid Lazarus.
When Jesus arrived at Lazarus' tomb, he reassured Martha that if she would just believe she would see the power of God. Jesus gave instructions to take away the stone. Next, he prayed and thanked his Father in heaven that He always heard him. Finally, Jesus called Lazarus to come out. To everyone's amazement, Lazarus heard Jesus call his name and came out.
This particular miracle clearly points to the heart of the gospel message: The dead are made alive. Lazarus was dead, and by the grace of God, was made alive. Something similar, yet even more significant happened to Jesus. Our Lord died and on the third day was made alive. On the basis of his own resurrection, Jesus is asking us the same question he posed to Martha: Do you believe that the dead can be made alive? If so, you are beginning to recognize that there is hope for any situation.
How many people really thought there was any hope for Lazarus? Truthfully, no one! Nobody thought it was possible for a man who had been dead four days to hear his name and walk out of a tomb. But the voice that Lazarus heard was not an ordinary voice. It was another voice. It was the voice of Jesus. The same voice that Lazarus heard is speaking to us today.
Can you hear his voice? He's saying, "There's hope!" There is hope because Jesus can love any sinner and pardon any sin. He can mend any relationship and save any marriage. He can heal any illness and break any addiction. He can give hope to the hopeless. Can you hear His voice? He's saying, "Nothing is impossible; there is hope for any situation."
As you read this article, you know in your heart what God has been saying to you. You know what you are going through. You know where you are feeling confused, lonely and discouraged. You know. But the good news is that so does Jesus and he is the one who is your hope. Turn to Jesus because when Jesus is your friend, there is hope for any situation.
Author:Paul Schlieker www.bible-study-lesson-plans.com
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