Now when Mary came to where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet, saying to him, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in his spirit and greatly troubled. And he said, “Where have you laid him?” They said to him, “Lord, come and see.” Jesus wept. So the Jews said, “See how he loved him!” —John 11:32-36

So they took away the stone. And Jesus lifted up his eyes and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I said this on account of the people standing around, that they may believe that you sent me.” When he had said these things, he cried out with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out.” The man who had died came out, his hands and feet bound with linen strips, and his face wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unbind him, and let him go. —John 11:41-44

            Death has brought so much pain down through the ages and will bring so much more pain right down to the end of the age.  So many tears have been shed at the death of loved ones all around this world.  The majority of people’s death are not known very widely.  186,000 people, I have read, die every day.  One day you and I will be among that number.

            Jesus saw May weeping and the Jews with her weeping and Jesus was deeply moved and also wept.  The Creator and sustainer of all things felt the pain of those related to Lazarus and also of those who were friends of the family.  Think of that!  Oh yes, He knows your pain and sorrow, grief and loss.  He feels your emotion.  He cares!

            But what Jesus does gives us a vivid picture of our resurrection and the resurrection that will happen to all those who have called on Jesus to be saved.  Jesus called to Lazarus after he had been in the tomb four days.  He said, “Lazarus, come out” and he came out of the tomb!

            There is coming a day when “Very truly I tell you, a time is coming and has now come when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God and those who hear will live” (John 5:24).  “For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first” (I Thessalonians 4:16).  Just as death could not hold Lazarus, so death has no hold on any who have called on Jesus to save them.

 “When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: ‘Death has been swallowed up in victory.’  Where, O death, is your victory?  Where, O death, is your sting?  The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” —I Corinthians 15:54-57

            Death is just a gateway to being with Jesus.  We need not fear death.  It has no hold on the followers of Jesus!  Rejoice!  Thank You, Dear Father, that all those who have called on Jesus will be with Him after death.  Oh, I look so forward to being with Him and all who love Him… forever.  But while I am still here, please help me to do Your will by Your Holy Spirit’s power and in the authority of Your Son Jesus.  So may it be!

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