May 19 - “If”
Scripture Reading – 1 Samuel 2:27-4:22 / John 11:1-44 / Psalm 64
“If” is a very big word. “If” is a conditional word that changes the outcome of our lives. Both Mary and Martha told Jesus that their brother Lazarus would not have died “if” Jesus had been there. They were overwhelmed with grief not only because their brother had died, but they also believed his death could have been avoided. Jesus could have healed Lazarus, “if” only He had been there.
The sisters sent word to Jesus about Lazarus’ sickness, but He delayed going for two days. (Jn. 11:6) This must have been a great disappointment to them, Jesus was Lazarus’ only hope and while Jesus waited, Lazarus died. We become rather anxious when we wait for The Lord to show up. For some of us, our situations may be so critical that we could classify them as life or death times.
I don’t wait very well. It is even harder to have patience when we can’t figure out the answers, solutions or directions. Mary and Martha knew the solution, the healing power of Jesus. Yet Christ was too late to make Lazarus whole and well. Jesus was no longer needed… or at least they thought.
They leaned on Christ for comfort. Jesus was moved by their grief and by the death of His friend Lazarus - He wept at the tomb. (v35) People recognized the depth of compassion Jesus had for Mary, Martha and Lazarus yet Christ had not come to simply weep but to step into an opportunity where His heavenly Father would glorify Him as His Son. Lazarus had been dead for four days and to the dismay of Mary and Martha, Jesus ordered them to roll away the gravestone.
Jesus called Lazarus to come out of the tomb and he walked out, grave clothes and all! A greater work had been done that day. Jesus didn’t raise Lazarus from a deathbed but from a grave! Christ was glorified and many believed in Jesus because of this amazing miracle. So, when Jesus shows up…it’s not too late. He has a miracle for you because He is a God of compassion and grace. It’s not a matter of “if” but a matter of “when”.
Pastor James Clark has pastored Calvary Assembly since 1985. He is blessed with his wife Yvonne, six children, two son-in-laws, a beautiful granddaughter and hopefully many more grandchildren to follow!