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Los Lunas Cornerstone

Church of the Nazarene

Resurrect (John 11:25-26)

    He is Risen!
    Happy Resurrection Sunday! It’s so good to see all of you today, I’m glad you’re here.
    Who needs some good news today? Good, because that’s what today is all about. It’s about good news. It’s about the best news, really.
    My message this morning is simple, straight from the Bible. I’m going to be in the gospel of John this morning. I’d love for you to join me in John 11:25-26 if you have a Bible with you this morning, or in a Bible app on your phone, or follow along with me on the screen.
    “Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life; the one who believes in Me will live, even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?”
    Jesus was speaking to His friend Martha. Martha was the brother of Jesus’ friend Lazarus. They had another sister, Mary, as well. Lazarus had been sick for a few days, so sick that by the time Jesus was able to go and see Lazarus, Lazarus was dead, and had already been buried in a tomb for four days.
    Mary and Martha were crushed, devastated, and deeply grieved that their brother was dead. Many people had come to comfort them. When Jesus arrived, Martha told Him that even as her brother was dead in the tomb, she believed that if Jesus asked God for something to be done, God would do it. Jesus told her that her brother Lazarus would rise from the dead.
    Martha’s answer was what I would call the “church” answer. It’s the answer you would except to get from someone who has gone to church their whole life and knows all the right things they’re supposed to say. She tells Jesus, “Yeah, I know, someday in the resurrection he’ll rise again.”
    And “Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life; the one who believes in Me will live, even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?”
    This part of the story has a really great ending, because Jesus really did raise Lazarus from the dead, and he was reunited with his sisters. But when Jesus said these words to Martha, He was talking about something more than bringing Lazarus back to life.
    His first statement to her was “I am the resurrection and the life;” What did He mean by that?
    When Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life”, He was saying that He is the source of both resurrection and life. When something or someone is resurrected, it means that they were once dead, and then came back to life. So what Jesus is saying here is that regardless of how someone has life, whether they were alive or dead and then brought back to life, Jesus was saying to Martha that He is where that life comes from.
    This is really important to us because, well…we’re alive! So we have to understand that we are alive because Jesus gives us life. The beginning of the book of John says that Jesus, because He is one with God, is the giver of life, the source of life. John wrote, “All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him not even one thing came into being that has come into being.” John 1:3 So if you’re here today and you’re alive, it’s because The Lord, Jesus, has given you life. His breath is literally in your lungs.
    For many people, that’s as alive as they’ll ever get. They draw air and they have brain function, they walk around and have their days go by, and they are technically alive, but they do not have resurrected life.
    What’s the difference? Resurrected life is what you have when you’re dead and then come back to life. Maybe that doesn’t make sense just yet, but Jesus was talking about literally, physically dying and coming back to life. Jesus was talking about your spiritual life. Your spirit is eternal, see, and even after your physical body dies, your soul still exists.
    In Ephesians 2:1, the apostle Paul wrote that we were all spiritually dead. Each and every one of us. All of us. Even if you came from a family of Christians and you grew up going to church. No matter how many times you’ve come to church, or if you were baptized as a baby. Doesn’t matter how many classes you may have taken as a young child. Each and every one of us was spiritually dead. The apostle Paul also tells us that the reason we were spiritually dead is because of our disobedience and sin.
    Yep. All of us. Spiritually dead because of disobedience and sin. Paul goes on to say that anything that following anything that goes against God and God’s commands is what make us spiritually dead.
    Since we were spiritually dead, we need a way for our spiritual life to be resurrected, right? We need a way for that spirit that lives in us to come back to life. And Jesus told Martha that this resurrection of the spirit can only happen through Him. The only way you can ever be not dead in your spirit is through Jesus.
    So while all of us are physically alive, and that life is given to us by Jesus, all of us were also spiritually dead and could only have our spiritual lives resurrected, brought back to life through Jesus.
    Have you ever watched a commercial on TV or maybe even an ad online that tells you about something, some amazing product that just seems so incredible that you have a hard time believing it’s true? I know I have, and usually when I see those kinds of commercials and ads I think, “Wow, that sounds great, but what’s the catch? What’s the fine print?”
    Here’s the thing about the resurrected life that Jesus can give: even though He freely offers it, like a gift someone offers to you, you have to take it. You have to accept the gift of resurrected life. You have to ask Him to make you spiritually alive.
    Jesus also told Martha, “the one who believes in Me will live, even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die.”
    The one who believes in Jesus will live. Not physically live, because we are already alive, but spiritually live. Whoever believes in Jesus will be spiritually alive. That resurrection He was talking about, if you believe in Him, He will bring your dead spirit back to life. That’s the “fine print” if you will, that’s the “catch”. It’s not really fine print though, because Jesus says it plainly and clearly. He wants us to be spiritually alive, not spiritually dead. He wants us to let Him resurrect our souls. The only thing we have to do is believe in Him.
    Believe in Him, He told Martha, and even if you die, you will live. Even if you die physically, your spirit will still be alive. Remember, our souls are eternal. Your soul, your spirit will end up somewhere forever. Jesus told Martha that if one believes in Him, that person will live forever. Their spirit will be alive forever, resurrected. No longer dead, but alive.
    I love these verses in Ephesians 2:4-5, “But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our wrongdoings, made us alive together with Christ,”
    Our souls were dead because of our wrongdoings, but Jesus resurrects our souls, brings the dead back to life, and gives our souls eternal life instead of eternal death! All we have to do is believe in Him. That’s what we have to do to take the free gift that He offers to us.
    Today is Resurrection Sunday. It’s the day we celebrate that when Jesus died on that Friday over 2,000 years ago, that wasn’t the end. He was dead, but He didn’t stay that way. He was resurrected on Sunday! He came back to life. He did that because He loves us deeply. He did that because He didn’t want us to continue to be physically alive but spiritually dead. He did that because He wanted to resurrect our spirits, just as He was resurrected. He did that because He didn’t want us to spend all of eternity with our souls away from God instead of with God. He did that because He wanted to give us life, in every way that we can have life.
    Jesus said one more thing to Martha in this conversation, before He raised Lazarus from the dead. After He told her He is the resurrection and the life, that those who believe in Him will live forever, He asked her a very important question. He said, “Do you believe this?”
    He is asking the exact same question of us this morning. Do you believe this? Do you believe that Jesus is the one who gives life? Do you believe that you are spiritually dead because you have gone against what God has said? Do you believe that Jesus can bring your spirit back to life? Do you believe that God loves you? Do you believe He wants to make you spiritually alive? Do you believe this?
    That’s what all of this hangs on! Jesus can give you eternal life, Jesus can make it so you can walk and talk with God through the Holy Spirit, Jesus can resurrect your spirit so you are alive in every way possible, but you must believe this. Do you believe this?
    Romans 10:9 says “that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and you believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;”
    Do you believe this?

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