Week 4 - Waiting

Tom Harding

Don’t give up what you want most for what you want now.

“How long, Oh Lord?”

John 11:1–20

So the two sisters sent a message to Jesus telling him, “Lord, your dear friend is very sick.”

But when Jesus heard about it he said, “Lazarus’s sickness will not end in death. No, it happened for the glory of God so that the Son of God will receive glory from this.” So although Jesus loved Martha, Mary, and Lazarus, he stayed where he was for the next two days.

Jesus’ love is not negated by his delay.

John 11:21

Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if only you had been here, my brother would not have died.

“I am not sure I can trust you.”

“Throw at God your grief, your anger, your doubt, your bitterness, your betrayal, your disappointment—he can absorb them all. . .God can deal with every human response save one. He cannot abide the response I fall back on instinctively: an attempt to ignore him or treat him as though he does not exist. . .”

-- Philip Yancey

“Faith means believing in advance what will only make sense in reverse.”

-- Philip Yancey

John 11:23-26

Jesus told her, “Your brother will rise again.” “Yes,” Martha said, “he will rise when everyone else rises, at the last day.”

Jesus told her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Anyone who believes in me will live, even after dying. 26 Everyone who lives in me and believes in me will never ever die. Do you believe this, Martha?”

Christian: one who is committed to Christ.

John 11:33

When Jesus saw her weeping and saw the other people wailing with her, a deep anger welled up within him, and he was deeply troubled.

“I think that which caused the anger of the Son of God to boil up and overflow in His spirit was that He was in the presence of the ravaging destruction of the greatest enemy of mankind, death. This was His enemy.

This was the foe, that in only a few days he was going to confront head on in the throes of the agony He would experience on the cross, dying to conquer death.”

-- R.C. Sproul

John 11:34-40

They told him, “Lord, come and see.” Then Jesus wept. The people who were standing nearby said, “See how much he loved him!” Jesus was still angry as he arrived at the tomb, a cave with a stone rolled across its entrance.

“Roll the stone aside,” Jesus told them.  But Martha, the dead man’s sister, protested, “Lord, he has been dead for four days. The smell will be terrible.” Jesus responded, “Didn’t I tell you that you would see God’s glory if you believe?”

How long Oh Lord? 

Do you believe?

John 11:41-45

Then Jesus looked up to heaven and said, “Father, thank you for hearing me. You always hear me, but I said it out loud for the sake of all these people standing here, so that they will believe you sent me.” Then Jesus shouted, “Lazarus, come out!” And the dead man came out,

Many of the people who were with Mary believed in Jesus when they saw this happen.

Whatever I so desperately want now, I don’t want as much as I want Jesus.