Devotion 375 – Thursday of Pentecost 17

Opening Prayer

Lord Jesus, show us Your glory. Amen.

Text: John 11:39-45

Jesus said, “Take away the stone.” Martha, the sister of him who was dead, said to Him, “Lord, by this time there is a stench, for he has been dead four days.” Jesus said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?” Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead man was lying. And Jesus lifted up His eyes and said, “Father, I thank You that You have heard Me. And I know that You always hear Me, but because of the people who are standing by I said this, that they may believe that You sent Me.” Now when He had said these things, He cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth!” And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with graveclothes, and his face was wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Loose him, and let him go.” Then many of the Jews who had come to Mary, and had seen the things Jesus did, believed in Him.

Devotion

These are words of almighty power that Jesus speaks: “Lazarus, come forth!” Nothing can resist them. Lazarus’ body had already been in the grave four days and had begun to decay; but at the Lord’s Word the soul returned. Death retreated, and the body came to life again. He speaks to the dead and wakes him as though he were sleeping. God who gave life has power to take it and power to give it back, and this power He has given to His Son. The Son is one with the Father from eternity and equally almighty; but in His humiliation He put the use of His almighty power in the Father’s hands and requests every miracle from the Father’s will, – never wanting anything different from the Father. Therefore His prayer was always answered. By this obedience even to death the Son of Man obtained “all the ends of the earth as His possession,” and on the last day with His almighty Word shall wake us all from the dead. My brother, asleep in the Lord, just like Martha’s sleeping brother, shall hear the voice of God’s Son and come forth, and I shall see him. Or, if I also die, before He comes, I myself shall awake with this voice, and the angels shall be my servants.

“Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?” With these words Jesus sustained Martha when she was near to fainting. Her faith won the victory and she saw “the glorification of God’s Son.” Yes, if we believe, we would see His glory! We would ask Him in faith for new life for one another, spiritual awakening in Jesus’ name. We would see that it is the Lord’s Word that accomplishes every great and good thing on earth, and we would see that the grave of the saints are chambers for sleep, and their decaying bodies are seed springing forth for the golden harvest of the great Day. God be praised, our struggling faith shall win the victory by His grace, and all our sickness shall be for God’s glory; for sorrow and death must flee before the voice of our Lord Jesus.

Closing Prayer

We pray You, Lord, increase our faith, and show us Your glory. Yes, this we implore You: Give us Your Spirit, strengthen our weak faith, and open our eyes to see Your glory. Amen.

Hymn

When I consider time and day,
I from this world am leaving,
My heart delights in ev’ry way
As birds new day receiving;
I then shall gain Release from pain
From sadness and from sorrow;
To joyful charms In Abram’s arms
I wake on that great morrow.

I know my Savior Jesus Christ
Lives in His heav’nly glory;
From death He shall open my eyes,
My flesh again restoring.
My body then Perfection gains
And like the sun is shining;
God’s fire indeed I e’er shall see
Revealed in wondrous shining.

Pedersen: Naar jeg betænker Tid og Stund: L 530:1-2 tr. DeGarmeaux;
tune: Mit Haab og Trøst (LHy 428) or Was mein Gott will (ELH 261); alternate hymn: Death is dead, the true Life liveth ELH 346

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