Page 10 - April 2023 - Truth & Tidings
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ith this “I AM,” Jesus of Naza-  prophet and stood on his feet (13:20,21).
                 reth permanently changed the   Even in the life of the Lord Jesus, there
        Wbiblical narrative on resur-         had been two miraculous raisings already.
        rection. Linking Himself with what His   Jairus’ daughter and the son of the widow
        disciples already knew, He not only paved   of Nain were both lifeless until the touch
        the way for the fine-tuning of resurrection   of the gracious Life Giver restored them
        doctrine but, as Carson writes, “Jesus’   to their loved ones with rejoicing (Mar
        concern is to divert Martha’s focus from an   5:41; Luk 7:14). Furthermore, after this,
        abstract belief in what takes place on the   there would be three more resurrections
        last day, to a personalized belief in Him   within the lifetime of these disciples (Mat
        who alone can provide it.”  Now, instead   27:50-53; Act 9:40; 20:10).
        of resurrection being only a concept that   But Lazarus’ graveside triumph dif-
        gave national and personal hope for the   fers from all that came before. It involves
        future (cf. Eze 37:11; Isa 26:19; Dan 12:2),   many similar elements with an important
        it is inseparably tied to the One through   distinction: this time physical touch will
        whom all of God’s program becomes real-  not be involved in releasing divine power.
        ity. He who had the firstborn status over   Here, His word is the only compelling
        all creation would soon become firstborn   force, displaying His authority over death.
        in the resurrection, “that he might have   This miracle illustrates the Lord’s words
        the first place in all things” (Col 1:18 JND).   in chapter 5, where He boldly states that
          However  impressive  the  events at   even those in the graves would eventually
        Bethany were, we know Lazarus was not   hear His voice and “come forth” (vv28-29).
        the first person raised from the dead in the   That declaration is now displayed in this
        Scriptures. Elijah’s widow of Zarephath   miracle. The dead cannot resist His word;
        (1Ki 17:17-22) and the Shunamite woman   they must come forth. So, here we have
        in the days of Elisha (2 Ki 4:18-37) both ex-  the pattern for resurrections to come; His
        perienced the bitter grief of losing a son. In   personal presence and His authoritative
        each case, Jehovah raised their dead ones   word are both involved in bringing forth
        through the physical touch of the proph-  the dead.
        ets. Another reviving took place in the   In the resurrection chapter of 1 Cor-
        tomb of the prophet Elisha as a dead man   inthians, Paul addresses the Sadducee
        came into contact with the bones of the   types by laying out the consequences
        ¹ D.A. Carson, The Gospel According to John   of their false teaching. “If Christ be not
        (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1991), 412.  raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in

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