Daily Word

Faith teased | John 11:23-27

23 Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.” 24 Martha said to him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day.” 25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, 26 and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?” 27 She said to him, “Yes, Lord; I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, who is coming into the world.”

John 11:23-27 (ESV)

I’m going back a few verses to make sure we have the context for this. Lazarus has been dead for four days. Jesus is “finally” there – but is it too late? Martha is the first to seek Jesus and express her grief. Jesus uses the opportunity to test her faith.

Resurrection and Life

Jesus tells her what she already knows – that Larasus will rise again at the last day. But then He teaches her a much deeper and more amazing truth: Jesus is the resurrection and the life! He directs her attention to Himself – to that see He is the power of the resurrection. He gives her the essence of the gospel: anyone who believes in Him will live forever. Consider:

  • The word “believe” is loaded with meaning. It’s a whole-hearted, even desperate, commitment, and based on faith. To believe in Jesus alone, by grace alone, through faith alone (Ephesians 2:8-9). It’s not based on our work, but solely on Jesus’.
  • Everyone dies (Hebrews 9:27) and everyone will be raised from the dead. Those who believe in Christ will be raised with new bodies to be with Christ for eternity in Heaven. Those who don’t will be raised and spend eternity apart from God in a place of everlasting suffering.
  • Jesus is the resurrection. Not only will He, himself be raised, He is the one who causes the future resurrection at the final judgment. 
  • Jesus is the life. We’ve read already that Jesus calls Himself the way, the truth and the life (John 10:30). He describes Himself as the source of life, providing living water

Faith teased

Jesus uses a teaching technique to help her strengthen and focus her faith, to tease it out of her. He asks if she believes. He already knew. But this caused her to reflect, then express her faith audibly. His desire is “to direct the thoughts of Martha to himself, as the giver of a higher life than that which he is about to bestow upon her brother.” (Family commentary) And she passed the test! “He that loves God when he takes away his comforts, has the best evidence possible of true attachment to him.” (Barnes’ commentary)

<- Reflection ->
  • Do you believe Jesus is the resurrection and the life? Got questions? Contact us. 
  • Has / is your faith being tested? God already knows the outcome. This test is mostly for you. Others are watching as well.
Teasing your hair. Image from http://themelisting.com/ *

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