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Raised to belief

Lazarus.  I sort of feel bad for the guy, but then I don’t.  He must have thought he was pretty good friends with Jesus.  Even though he was sick, he had seen and heard all that his friend Jesus was doing.  He must have had hope that he would get well.  But lying in his death bed, breathing what seemed to be his last, Lazarus’ opinion of Jesus might have shifted.

There is so much talk of belief in this story that the only proper recap is to just quote the text:

So then he told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead, 15and for your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. (15)

Martha said to Jesus, “if you had been here, my brother would not have died. 22But I know that even now God will give you whatever you ask.” (v22)

“I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though h dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” (25-26)

Jesus said, “Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?” (40)

I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me.” (42)

“Therefore many of the Jews who had come to visit Mary, and had seen what Jesus did, put their faith in him.” (45)

This encounter with Lazarus is a pivotal moment in the Gospel story.  My favorite part about this miraculous day is Martha’s response to Jesus.  “But I know that even now God will give you whatever you ask.”  Faith, belief!  In spite of what seemed hopeless, Martha believed.  Oh, that I might do the same…

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