Jesus, His Friends, and Lessons at the Dinner Table, Part 5 (Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign, Day 176)
TEXT: John 12:9-11
9 Much people of the Jews therefore knew that he was there: and they came not for Jesus’ sake only, but that they might see Lazarus also, whom he had raised from the dead.
10 But the chief priests consulted that they might put Lazarus also to death;
11 Because that by reason of him many of the Jews went away, and believed on Jesus.
Today, I am continuing the daily Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign sermon series, which is aimed at sharing the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ with unbelievers and reminding Christians, in this important election year, to keep the main thing the main thing — and that is reaching unbelievers with the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and praying for their salvation, for the problem in America is not only disobedient presidents, politicians, and people, but disobedient pastors, preachers, and parishioners who have refused to obey the Lord’s Great Commission which is to, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” and who have refused to obey God’s repeated commands to “pray without ceasing” for unbelievers, believers, and political leaders. Yes, you should pray for the right candidate to win; yes, you should vote for the candidate that the Lord gives you peace about voting for. But, don’t get caught up in it like the world does. Nothing much is going to change until people get saved and get their hearts right with the Lord.
This campaign is inspired by the following three verses: 1 Corinthians 2:2 which says, “For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.” Acts 5:42 which says, “And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.” And 2 Timothy 2:4 which says, “No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.”
This series is not for Christians necessarily. However, I do hope you are one of those saints who still loves to hear the “Old, old story of Jesus and His love” — As another hymn says, “For those who know it best Seem hungering and thirsting to hear it like the rest.” This series is primarily for unbelievers, so they can hear and understand the Gospel and be saved from sin and the punishment of sin which is hell. This is message number 176.
B.J. Richardson said, “Lazarus didn’t have to have any profound speeches in order to glorify God. He didn’t have to be incredibly persuasive or convincing. He took no classes in apologetics or epistemology. He didn’t even go through an evangelism class or memorize the Romans Road. He simply had to exist. All he had to do is show people the change. ‘This is where I was and this is where I am now.’ That’s it.”
Today, our text reveals the immense hatred that the Jewish religious leaders had cultivated for Jesus and His work. We find that, not only are they targeting Jesus but they are targeting Lazarus as well. Before, they rarely went after the people whom Jesus had helped or worked miracles for, but a man being raised from the dead was too much for them. They decided that Lazarus needed to be put to death.
One of the reasons why the “chief priests” wanted Lazarus back in the grave is because, as I mentioned before, most of the chief priests were Sadducees, and Sadducees did not believe in a physical resurrection. They believed that once you died, that was it: your soul went back to God, but your body remained decaying in the grave. Lazarus was living proof that their theology was wrong. Yet, instead of correcting their theology, they decided that they wanted to kill Lazarus.
Not only did Lazarus being alive prove that what they had been teaching was wrong, it was one of the biggest pieces of evidence for Jesus’ ministry. John tells us that people came not just to see Jesus, but to “see Lazarus also, whom he had raised from the dead.” It was for this reason that “many of the Jews went away [left the Sadducees], and believed on Jesus.”
To hear a man testify that he was sick, that he died, that he was buried, but that he is alive right now — with multiple witnesses to back up his story — is powerful indeed. People would have been foolish not to believe on Jesus now. Even those who had previously oppose Jesus because of some of His controversial statements had to give it a second thought. As Jesus had once said, ‘If you won’t believe because of My words, believe because of My works.’
But the Sadducees weren’t interested in believing. They only wanted to preserve their status with Rome — to keep their wealth, ease, comfort, and authority over the people. They obviously knew that Jesus had proven them wrong on many occasions — Lazarus’ resurrection being the latest and most significant demonstration of His power. Now, they only wanted to destroy the evidence by killing Lazarus.
The testimony of a person whose life has been transformed is very powerful. Jesus desires to bring about equally dramatic change in your life today. You say, ‘But, I’m not dead.’ If you are not a part of God’s family through Jesus Christ, you are dead in your sins. If you’re a prostitute, that’s death. If you’re a drug addict, that’s death. If you’re a homosexual, that’s death. If you’re a liar, that’s death. If you’re a drunkard, that’s death. If you’re an embezzler, a cheater, a thief, an adulterer — all of it — it’s death.
Jesus is calling you out of your dead situation just as He called Lazarus out of his grave. He can change your life and give you new life. That is why salvation is called being born again. Here is how you can be born again today.
1. Accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Ecclesiastes 7:20: “For there is not a just man upon earth that doeth good, and sinneth not.” Romans 3:23 reads: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
2. Accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
3. Accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” The Bible says in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
4. Accept the fact that you cannot do anything to save yourself! The Bible states in Ephesians 2: 8, 9: “For by grace are ye saved through faith: and that not of yourselves: it is a gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast.”
5. Accept the fact that God loves you more than you love yourself, and that He wants to save you from hell. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
6. With these facts in mind, please repent of your sins, believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and pray and ask Him to come into your heart and save you this very moment. The Bible states in the book of Romans 10:9, 13: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Dear friend, if you are willing to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation, please pray with me this simple prayer: Heavenly Father, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please e-mail me at email@example.com and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.