Whilst on my way to work today, I listened to Pastor Michael Youssef of Leading The Way give a heart rending message on salvation. He used the example of Lazarus and the poor rich man. It was tense. In a nutshell the message was directed at today's realities. Whilst the gospel is being pronounced, men are busy with the affairs of life.
The Lazarus Syndrome Part 2 So we looked at Lazarus and wondered why such a beautiful child of God died such a horrific death in his flesh. It got me thinking even more and I asked the Holy Spirit to show me more. I felt there was more to this story.......and He did. This time He linked Lazarus to the beatitudes and pointed out how each part of Lazarus represented the hidden blessings of God. Here it is in: Matthew 5:3-12.
be interpreted at three levels. Firstly, as it is as written. Do not lie means do not lie. Do good means do good. Secondly it can also be applied to us directly, such as a word of encouragement given to us from a verse or chapter in the bible e.g. the Lord is my shepherd, or He will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Him. Thirdly it can be interpreted by seeking the hidden meaning behind the words such as yeast of the Pharisees, meaning teaching, or bread meaning Gods words.
The story of Lazarus and how he was raised from the dead is well read and may are conversant with this story in John 11. Jesus had known that Lazarus had died and indeed his intention was that this would happen this way so that the disciples would believe. Could you think that despite all the miracles signs and wonders that the disciples had witnessed, Jesus was still having to work on their belief.Thomas had it real bad because he actually said in verse 16 that they would go to die with Lazarus. Jesus ignored this.
He said nothing
Jesus had been taken to Herod forwarded on like an irritating email by Pilate. Herod was secretly happy to see Jesus because he had heard about the miracles and wanted to see one performed especially for him. But Jesus did not respond to his demands. He stayed quiet.
So, the kids and I were having a discussion over bible study time. I asked the question after the reading. Why did Jesus keep quiet d'you think?
He can't get enough of it. Why, even the stones would cry out if no one else would praise Him. I realized from reading the psalms that praise to God is mandatory. There are several different reasons to praise God and only one reason not to. This is how I knew it was mandatory to praise God. Besides, who doesn’t like being praised? We all do.
He commands angels, demons, sea monsters beast. cattle, nature, weather, the flesh, the future, solar system, skies, rain, oceans and so on to do so...
Rachel, Sarah, Moses, David, Absalom, Abigail, Esther, Joseph, Saul, Daniel ...all had something in common. They were described in the bible as having good looking features. Beautiful in form one way or another, be it height, hair, skin or shape.
However the God we serve does not judge us by how we look but He examines our thoughts and the purposes of our hearts. So I wonder what does looks have to do with it?
When He returned
I title this message, when He returned. Luke 24 reminds me of the statement Jesus made when he asked the question 'when the son of man returns, will He find faith on the earth?'
And so he returned in this chapter, but whatever faith was with the disciples and with the women who followed Him in this chapter, it wasn’t easy to see.