The Hebrew form of the name of Lazarus means, My Helper. Surely a fitting name for one who was so mightily helped by God.
There was a Lazarus who was a sick man according to (v.1) “A certain man was sick” “He whom Thou lovest is sick” (v.3). Lazarus was Loved by Jesus, but he was smitten with a sickness.
When Jesus heard of it, He said, “This sickness. . .is for the glory of God” (v. 4). For that sickness which brings us down to the place of death, that the Jesus might be glorified in doing a marvellous work in us and for us, “ Eph.2:10) tells ““For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, “ (Eph.2:10).
The Spirit of God must influence us of our sin before he can quickens us into a new spiritual man.
There was a man name Lazarus that was Dead. “Jesus said unto them plainly, Lazarus is dead” (v.14). This sickness was not unto eternal death, but unto that death which in a very singular way made Lazarus a fit subject for the resurrecting power of the Son of God,”Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.” (I.Cor15:51,52).
Real sin-sickness is only unto the death of self-love and self-will, that the power of Christ might be manifested, “Sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.” According to (Ja.1:14).
When the Spirit of God convinces of sin, of righteousness and of judgment, it is the passing of the sentence of death upon all of us. All hope of salvation from any other source has to be abandoned, it was Jesus who said “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” (Mt.11:28).
Jesus gave Lazarus Life, “He that was dead came forth”(v. 44). The life-giving power of Jesus Christ could only be manifested in the case of a dead man,” Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:” (Jh.11:28).
If Lazarus had only been a sleep, there would have been no glory to God in his awakening, but Jesus said unto them plainly, “Lazarus is dead.” (Jh.11:14).
Christ Jesus came into this world to save sinners. It would bring no glory to Him to give life or salvation to those who did not need it. Before the Apostle Paul could say, “Now I live,” he had to say, “I am crucified. ”
We must die to self if we would live unto God, “For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.” (Rom.8:13).
To share with Christ His resurrection power, we must needs go to the Cross and the grave with Him. If we refuse to die, we refuse to enter into the new and fruitful life. “Except a corn of wheat die, it abideth alone ” (John 12. 24).
Lazarus was set at liberty by our Lord Jesus Christ according to (v,44) “Jesus said, loose him and let him go.”
As in nature, so in grace, where there is a fullness of life there will be the bursting open and a breaking forth from the old dead forms and habits, “And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising “ God.” (Ac.3:8).
All that we can do for our dead is to bind them and bury them, but how different when, with a loud voice, the Jesus speaks to them.
The man that has been liberated from death and the grave, must not be hindered by any fashion of grave clothes, “And when he thus had spoken, he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth. And he that was dead came forth” according to (.Jh.11:43).
Whom Jesus makes free, He is free indeed. The relatives of those saved by Jesus may do much to bind or loose their lives for His service. “Ye did run well; who did hinder you that ye should not obey the truth?” (Gal.5:7).
The Lord’s command to the friends of Lazarus was, “Loose him and let him go” (Jh. 11: 44).
Lazarus has had Communion with Christ. “Lazarus was one of them that sat at the table with Him” (chap.12:2).
What a blessed privilege to company with Him who has given us to know in our own experience that He is the “Resurrection and the Life.”
To those who have passed from death unto life there is no fellowship to be compared with His God, David said, “I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the LORD.” (Ps.122:1).
As like draws to like, so must the resurrected spirit draw to Him who is the Resurrection “Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; ” (I.Jh.3:2).
Every time we sit down prayerfully to study His Word, we are sitting at the table with Him, listening to His voice, and receiving food for our souls, what a blessing it is to set at the Lord’s table.
Lazarus had a great Testimony. “By reason of him, many of the Jews went away and believed on Jesus” (chap.12:11).
The power of his testimony lay, not so much in what he was able to say, as in what he was.
The fact that he had been raised from death and corruption by the word of Jesus Christ, was in itself a most convincing witness to Jesus’ Divinity and Messiahship, “Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.” according to (Jh.1:29).
The greater the work of grace formed in us by God’s mighty power, the greater will be the force of our testimony for Him.
Lazaeus was facing Agony. Because of the converting power of this new life in Lazarus “the chief priests consulted that they might put him to death” (chap.12:10).
His old life brought no persecution, but now he has the happiness of those who are reproached for the Name of Jesus Christ, the saving name “If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified.” (1.Pt. 4:14).
It is beyond the power of the enemy to kill or destroy the resurrection life.
Your life is hid with Christ in God. “If any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God on this behalf” (1.Pt. 4.16).