In the history of good deals, the offer of eternal life ranks as the very best! Life in its total abundance for all of time! What could be better?

And yet, here we see despite the Good News Jesus brings – indeed, the Good News that Jesus is (John 11:25) – there are some either disappointed, offended or even angered by it!

Why is this the case? We can gather some clues from this passage.

Mary and Martha both reasonably complain: “Lord, if you had been here our brother would not have died!” (John 11:21, 32). Notice how their lack of faith isn’t whether Jesus has the power of resurrection, rather it’s whether he even cares! The Jews echo this: “Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from dying?” (John 11:37)

Through his tears, Jesus proves that they’re wrong about him. He does care. For they, after seeing him weeping, proclaim: “See how he loved him!” (John 11:36)

And yet, there is a nub of truth to their complaint: contrary to their expectations, God’s plan is not first and foremost about comforting Mary or Martha, nor is it about preventing them from experiencing the pain and loss of mourning their brother. Rather, Jesus declares in verse 4: “This sickness will not end in death. No, it is for God’s glory so that God’s Son may be glorified through it.”

The Good News is not primarily about you and me. It is not about what is easiest, nor most carefree, nor most free of pain for us. Rather, it is first and foremost about God’s glory and He will allow any death to occur if it means his resurrection glory is to be revealed in and through us.

Perhaps we can begin to understand why some don’t readily receive the Gospel as Good News.

We see this with the response of the chief priests and the Pharisees. When they hear about what Jesus has done, they worry for themselves, their place of power and privilege. For resurrection requires certain things to die – most especially our expectations, our list of demands, our non-negotiables, and all those things that get in the way of God’s most glorious demonstration: life from death.

What do you need to let die in order for God’s resurrection power to be displayed in and through you?

Ryan Lunde
Young Adults Pastor

Subscribe to the Daily Fill