Wednesday, May 4, 2011

The Plot to Kill The Formerly Dead Guy

Part 9 in this story series, "Second-Guessing God's Goodness ..."

Now you can imagine that when Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead, that had a serious effect on a lot of people who saw it happen. John, who writes the story, tells us that many people believed in Jesus that day.

Many people?

You mean, not all of them believed?

Logically, I would think that if I'd seen a dead guy walk out of a grave four days after being put in there, it would be enough for me to believe anything.

But guess what.

Some of those who were present high tailed it right back to Jesus's sworn enemies in Jerusalem. And when the chief priests heard about what happened, it set in motion their plans to kill Jesus. So Jesus withdrew until the Passover.

Now you know what happened at that Passover feast, right?

That happens to be Palm Sunday, when Jesus came into Jerusalem on a donkey, and many hailed Him as the Messiah.

Guess who else was there.

Yep -- Lazarus.

So .......... what do you think Jesus's enemies wanted to do with Lazarus? I mean, this guy was the proof in the pudding that Jesus was who He said He was -- the Son of God.

Yep: They made plans to assassinate Lazarus, too. They couldn't have that guy around! It would wreck everything for them!

Now let's look at this in more detail and how it pertains to us:

Has God ever done hand stands and back flips for you so that you'll believe? And when He does, do you recognize those things and sink your faith into Him more ... or do you look for excuses to kill the flicker of a flame of belief?

Here's the thing: There are people who, no matter what you say or do to share Jesus, will NEVER believe. NEVER. They will never believe. And you can't do anything about it. You know why? Because ultimately, it's between them and God. You can't force this.

When I was on Twitter trying to share my faith with atheists, I found that consistently they would say the same thing:

"If God is God, then why doesn't He grow an amputee's arm back? If I saw that, I'd believe in God."

My response always was, "What, raising Himself back from the dead isn't good enough for you?"

Because, listen.

God has already done the unthinkable -- the unimaginable. He resurrected Himself and conquered death. And we see from the story of Lazarus that even in that day -- EVEN PEOPLE WHO SAW IT HAPPEN -- did NOT believe.

So where does this leave us?

Tune in for the conclusion of the story series, "Second-Guessing God's Goodness."

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