I often remember the story of Lazarus because it contains the shortest verse in the Bible, John 11:35 “Jesus wept”. As a child in Sunday school, it was one of the verses we had to memorize. But that story is as powerful as they come. Certainly more significant than just being the shortest verse in the Bible. It packs verse after verse of truths and life anchoring words. God uses that story to remind me that not only can He prevent me from meeting calamity, He can also bring me back from calamity. In other words, not only is my feet kept steady from falling, I can also bounce back if I do fall.
Not just Redemptive, But Preventive Also
Prior to Jesus Christ raising Lazarus from the dead, there was a general belief at the time that death had a finality to it. That once someone or something was dead, nothing else could be done. And so all efforts were to be expended in keeping the living alive because nothing could be expended for the dead. This was the very notion Jesus encountered and worked to set straight for all times. The urgency in correcting this was so fervent, He could not even wait till his own physical death in a few weeks. There is life after death. This was what Jesus meant when He said: “this sickness is not unto death but that God is glorified”. What better way to glorify God than to show the multitude, that their accepted finality bowed to Jesus. To show that Jesus was not just in the preventive business but also in the redemptive business.
The Final is the Same as the Beginning – Jesus
It don’t matter what the devil or what life throws at you, You can and will bounce back. What is the worst that can happen? Death? Even that has been conquered by your SPONSOR, Jesus. And yes, you will bounce back from that too. You can bounce back from a job loss, you can bounce back from a cancer diagnoses. You can bounce back when a spouse or loved one leaves you. You can bounce back when your self worth is yanked from you. That’s why the story of Lazarus matters much. It asserts that failure has no finality to it. The final is the same as the beginning – Jesus. Because of this, because of Him, you too can bounce back
“…This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby – John 11:4”