Read: John 11:1-4, 20-24, 32-45
Lord, by this time he stinketh: for he hath been dead four days - Jn 11:39
The account of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead stirs our emotions and causes us to stand in awe of the power of God. Maybe this passage is so powerful to us because we can visualize it so clearly in our minds. We can see ourselves trudging through the crowded streets of Bethany with Christ and His disciples. As we near the outskirts of town, we hear from up the dusty path a sound of sobbing and waiting. Then from the direction of Lazarus'house, Martha comes running to Jesus. Tears are still running down her face, and we can feel her pain and hopelessness as she cries out her frustration to the Lord,"If only You had been here, my brother had not died!"
On the faces of the mourners standing about we see the same look of frustration. "If only He had gotten herre sooner." "If only Lazarus could have hung on a few more days, I am sure Christ could have healed him." "If only, if only, if only, Jesus wasn't four days late."
Dear Christian, do you ever feel that God is "four days late" when a loved one dies from an illness or when your plans and dreams don't work out? Do we trust that God can heal a friend, but fail to trust in His wisdom when that dear one dies? Do we trust that he can guide our lives, but fail to trust Him when things don't go as we planned?
Wandering back to that graveside scene, we can feel the expectation as some men remove the stone. The women stop their weeping, and there is death-like silence until Jesus cries out, "Lazarus, come forth!" There is a sound of shuffling feet, and we are overcome with jou and wonder as Lazarus appears at the mouth of the grave.
How could we have doubted? How could we have felt disheartened? How could we have placed a limit on the poweer of God? Jesus was not "four days late." He was right on time.
Daniel Olson - Leana, WI
On Time - His time.