The Resurrection of Lazarus

The Resurrection of Lazarus Proved 2 Aspects of God’s Essence

Each of our brothers and sisters who believes in the Lord Jesus knows that the Lord Jesus did the work of redeeming humanity in the Age of Grace. He not only bestowed compassion and tolerance upon us, teaching us to be tolerant and patient and to repent and confess, but also manifested many miracles, such as, letting the blind see and the lame walk, healing the lepers, feeding five thousand with five loaves of bread and two fish, raising Lazarus to life, and so on. None of these miracles doesn’t show forth the authority of God. But when I read chapter 11, verses 43-44 of the Gospel of John, “And when he thus had spoken, he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth. And he that was dead came forth, bound hand and foot with grave clothes: and his face was bound about with a napkin. Jesus said to them, Loose him, and let him go.” After reading this passage of scripture, I thought that at that time Lazarus had already been dead for four days, and maybe his body had started to smell, but just one word from the Lord Jesus raised him from the dead. What are the intentions of God behind this matter? This question puzzled me for a long time. It was not until once I read some words in a book that the doubt in my heart was resolved. 1、The Resurrection of Lazarus Proved That the Lord Jesus Was the Incarnate God Himself The book says, “The Lord Jesus doing something like this was extremely significant in that age. Because God had become flesh, people could only see His physical appearance, His practical side, and His insignificant side. Even if some people saw and understood some of His character or some strengths that He appeared to have, no one knew where the Lord Jesus came from, who His essence truly was, and what more He really could do. All of this was unknown to mankind. Too many people wanted proof of this thing, and to know the truth. Could God do something to prove His own identity? For God, this was a breeze—it was a piece of cake. He could do something anywhere, anytime to prove His identity and essence, but God did things with a plan, and in steps. He didn’t do things indiscriminately; He looked for the right time, and the right opportunity to do something most meaningful for mankind to see. This proved His authority and His identity. So then, could the resurrection of Lazarus prove the Lord Jesus’ identity? Let’s look at this passage of scripture: ‘And when he thus had spoken, he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth. And he that was dead came forth.’ When the Lord Jesus did this, He said just one thing: ‘Lazarus, come forth.’ Lazarus then came out from his tomb—this was accomplished because of a single line uttered by the Lord” (“God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself III”). Through this passage of words I saw that when the Lord Jesus worked and appeared to man two thousand years ago, nobody knew who He was. Many people were filled with a curiosity and doubt toward Him. The disciples that followed Him didn’t recognize the identity of Him either. Some of them called Him teacher; some also said He was the greatest of prophets. From these facts, I saw that no more than a few people knew His true identity in that age. In order to prove His identity to mankind, the Lord Jesus used the miracle of bringing the dead back to life to reveal His authority and power to make man know that He is God Himself. From this miracle He performed, I saw that He neither observed any rituals nor set up an altar to pray to the God in heaven before He spoke. He only said loudly, “Lazarus, come forth.” Then Lazarus who had been dead for four days came out of the tomb. As soon as God says one sentence, the matter is finished. The prophets in ages past also performed a lot of miracles, but the miracle of bringing the dead back to life could not even have been performed by any prophets. This miracle of raising Lazarus from the dead has proved the identity of the Lord Jesus—the incarnate God, for only God seizes the key to Hades. The time when we are born or die is only determined by God. Evil spirits and Satan, including servants from Hades, are all unable to command mankind’s life and death. It is only God Himself who can perform this miracle. The Lord Jesus performed the miracle of raising Lazarus from the dead, which lets us recognize that His identity is God Himself and achieve a completely new awareness of His true identity and all that He has and is, and finally we are able to truly believe in and follow Him. This miracle the Lord Jesus performed is extremely meaningful. 2、The Resurrection of Lazarus—the Manifestation of God’s Authority The book says, “When the Lord Jesus brought Lazarus back from the dead, He used one line: ‘Lazarus, come forth.’ He said nothing aside from this—what do these words represent? They represent that God can accomplish anything through speaking, including resurrecting a dead man. When God created all things, when He created the world, He did so with words. He used spoken commands, words with authority, and just like that all things were created. It was accomplished like that. This single line spoken by the Lord Jesus was just like the words spoken by God when He created the heavens and earth and all things; it equally held the authority of God, the ability of the Creator. All things were formed and stood fast because of words from God’s mouth, and just the same, Lazarus walked out from his tomb because of the words from the Lord Jesus’ mouth. This was the authority of God, demonstrated and realized…

Lord Jesus and disciple peter

Why Did the Lord Jesus Approve of Peter’s Faith?

By Zhang Jin In Matthew 16:18-19 the Lord Jesus said: “And I say also to you, That you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give to you the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatever you shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” Whenever I read these two verses, I would think: Why did the Lord Jesus give Peter the keys of the kingdom of heaven? Since the Lord Jesus bestowed upon Peter such great authority, it means that the Lord Jesus approved of Peter’s faith and that Peter was a person after God’s heart. But I couldn’t understand why the Lord commended Peter since he had denied knowing the Lord three times before His crucifixion. I was very perplexed. One day, I opened the Bible, and turned to Matthew 16, trying to find from the context the prerequisite and background for the Lord Jesus’ giving Peter the keys of the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 16:13-19 records: “When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?And they said, Some say that you are John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets. He said to them, But whom say you that I am? And Simon Peter answered and said, You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. And Jesus answered and said to him, Blessed are you, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood has not revealed it to you, but my Father which is in heaven. And I say also to you, That you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give to you the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatever you shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” I read these verses repeatedly and pondered them carefully: Did the Lord Jesus approve of Peter because, of His disciples, only Peter recognized He was the Christ? Why did the Lord Jesus say that Peter was blessed and give him the keys of the kingdom of heaven after he answered Him by saying, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God”? But I still could not figure out why the Lord approved of Peter’s faith, and didn’t know how I should pursue to receive the Lord’s approval of my faith. I asked all the preachers I knew these questions, but no one could give me a satisfying answer. I was very disappointed: Why do none of them know the answer? How then can they lead the believers onto the path of being approved by God? I felt that the prospects of my faith in God were bleak, thinking: If only I could see the Lord Jesus and ask Him about that. … Later, I finally found the reason that Peter gained God’s approval from a book, which says: “Why is it said that Peter is a fruit? Because he has something of worth, or something worth perfecting, he has a resolution to seek truth and has a firm will; he has reason, is willing to suffer hardship, and he rejoices in truth in his heart, and when he encounters something he will not let it go. These are all strong points.” “After a period of experience, Peter saw in Jesus many of the deeds of God, saw the loveliness of God, and saw much of God’s being in Jesus. So too did he see that the words of Jesus could not have been spoken by man, and that the work Jesus did could not have been done by man. In Jesus’ words and actions, furthermore, Peter saw much of the wisdom of God, and much divine work. During his experiences, he did not merely come to know himself, but also focused on observing the actions of Jesus, from which he discovered many new things; namely, that there were many expressions of the practical God in the work that God did through Jesus, and that Jesus’ words, actions, the ways He shepherded the churches and the work He carried out differed from any ordinary man. Thus, from Jesus he learned many lessons that he was supposed to learn, and by the time Jesus was about to be nailed to the cross, he had gained some knowledge of Jesus—a knowledge which was the basis of his lifelong loyalty to Jesus, and of his crucifixion upside down for the sake of Jesus.” “Though there were three times when Peter denied knowing Christ, and though he tempted the Lord Jesus, such slight human weakness bore no relation to his nature, and did not affect his future pursuit, and cannot sufficiently prove that his temptation was an act of antichrist. Normal human weakness is something shared by all people in the world—do you expect Peter to be any different? … Though the many years of painful experiences of Peter are not recorded in the Bible, this does not prove that Peter did not have real experiences, or that Peter was not made perfect. How can the work of God be fully fathomed by man?” “Peter was made perfect through experiencing dealing and refinement. He said, ‘I must satisfy God’s desire at all times. In all that I do I only seek to satisfy God’s desire, and whether I am chastised, or judged, still I am happy to do so.’ Peter gave his all to God, and his work, words, and entire life were all for the sake of loving God. … What Peter cared about was the true love within his heart, and that which was practical and could be achieved. He did not care about whether he would receive a reward, but about…

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