Praise the Lord, Grace & Peace great people of our “Great God”… JESUS!
Are you dealing with the circumstances and situations that seem to be a dead end! All hope may seem to have gone because your flesh has convinced you that it can’t change due to the duration of the trial. In this Golden Nugget I would like to provoke thought through gospel provocation to remind you to “Just Give It to JESUS.” For my premise I would like to engage your interest in the gospel of St. John chapters 11 & 12 from the gospel of John.
My brothers and sisters, when we read the Gospel of John chapters 11 & 12 notice that you will find a very rare spiritual treat. In chapter 11 we see what Jesus was to the family of Bethany; and in chapter 12 we see what the family of Bethany was to Jesus.
In chapter 11 we have three great subjects presented to us, first, our Lord’s own path with the Father; secondly, His profound sympathy He had for the people; and, thirdly, His grace in associating us with Himself in His work.
Notice my brothers and sisters the word states, “Now a certain man was sick, named Lazarus, of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha. (It was that Mary which anointed the Lord with ointment, and wiped His feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick.) Therefore his sisters sent unto Him, saying, Lord, behold he whom Thou lovest is sick. When Jesus heard that, He said, This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God that the Son of God might be glorified thereby.”
These sisters in their time of trouble turned to their divine friend Jesus, who was a sure resource for them, as He is for all who walk by faith, wherever, however, or whoever they are. For His word tells us “Call upon Me in the time of trouble; I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify Me.” We make a serious mistake when in the time of need or pressure, we seem to turn to the flesh for help or sympathy. It has been proven through experience that we will be disappointed, because those natural streams can dry up, and all natural props can give way. This is why our God shows us the vanity and folly in putting confidence in the flesh, human hopes, and earthly expectations. But thank God that during the process He always proves to us in miraculous ways that “They shall not be ashamed that wait for Me.”
That’s right Saints, never! Blessed be His holy name, never will he fail those who trust in Him. Jesus cannot deny Himself. He delights to take occasion from our wants, our woes and weaknesses, to express and illustrate His tender care and loving-kindness in a thousand ways. While in the process He teaches us the utter barrenness of all human resources. For the word states in Jer 17:5 “Thus saith the Lord; Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the Lord. For he shall be like the heath in the desert, and shall not see when good cometh; but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land and not inhabited.“
My brothers and sisters from my experience, only disappointment, barrenness and desolation are apparent results from trusting in man. But, on the other hand notice and mark the contrast in Jer 17:6-8 “Blessed is the man that trusteth in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord is. For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreadeth out her roots by the river, and shall not see when heat cometh, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit.” It is a fatal mistake to look even to the very best of men, because the true secret of blessings, strength and comfort is to look to Jesus, and give it to HIM by coming to Him in simple faith, because He is a living God whose delight is to help the needy, to strengthen the feeble, and lift up those that are cast down.
Hence, the sisters of Bethany did the right thing, when in the hour of need and pressure they turned to Jesus. He was both able and willing to help them: yet the Blessed One did not respond at once to their call. He did not react immediately to come to their relief, even though He loved them so much. He fully entered into their sorrow and anxiety, for there was no lack of sympathy as we see in the sequel. Yet He paused; and I am sure the enemy probably cast all sorts of suggestions; which caused their minds to wonder and reason. It might have seemed as though “The Master” had forgotten them, or perhaps their loving Lord and friend had changed his perspective toward them. We all know how our own poor minds can reason and torture us during times of waiting.
My experience in Jesus Christ has taught me that there is a divine remedy for all our reasoning’s, and a triumphant answer to the entire enemy’s dark and horrible suggestions. What is it? We must continue to have an unshakable confidence in the eternal stability of the love of Christ.
Here lies the true secret of the whole matter. Let nothing shake your confidence in the unalterable love of JESUS. Come what may …let the furnace be super hot, let the waters be very deep, let the shadows be overwhelm with darkness, let the path be very rough; we still have to hold fast to our confidence in the perfect love and sympathy of Jesus who has proved His love by dying for us, and brought us out of darkness into His marvelous light, by submitting to the dark and heavy billows and waves of the wrath of God in order to save our soul from everlasting damnation.
My brothers and sisters please don’t be afraid to trust Him fully, commit yourself without a shadow of reserve or doubt in Him. Do not measure His love by your circumstances. If you do, you will reach a false conclusion. I repeat, do not judge your outcome in Christ according to the outward appearance. Never reason from your surroundings. Get to the heart of Christ, and let your reasoning be in the Word of God. Never interpret His love by your circumstances; but always interpret your circumstances by His love. Let the beams of His everlasting favor shine upon your darkest surroundings, and then you will be able to answer every infidel thought or person, no matter what it is or where they come from. Never judge the Lord by the five senses in your flesh, but trust Him for His grace, while remembering that behind the frowning adversary or adversarial situation, Jesus reveals His smiling face.
It is a beautiful thing to be able to vindicate God, even if we can do nothing more than to stand as a monument of His unfailing faithfulness to all who put their trust in Him. I have learned through experience that, though the horizon around me may get dark and depressing , and the heavy clouds gather and the storms rage; God has proven to be faithful, and will not permit any of us to be tempted above that we are able; but will, with the temptation, make a way of escape, that we may be able to bear it.
God’s thoughts are not as our thoughts; nor His ways as our ways; nor His love as our love. If we hear of a friend in distress or difficulty of any kind, our first impulse is to assist and relieve them of their trial if possible. But this might be a great mistake. We might actually be working against the purpose of God, by taking our friend out of a position in which divine providence has placed them for their ultimate and permanent profit. The love of God is a wise and faithful love. It abounds toward us in all wisdom and prudence.
We, on the contrary, make the gravest mistakes, even when we perceive what is right and good. We are not competent to take in all the provincial work of God. Hence, there is an urgent need to wait on God; and, above all things, to hold fast our confidence in His unchanging, unfailing, unerring love. Jesus will bring light out of darkness, life out of death, victory out of seeming defeat. He will cause the deepest and darkest distress to yield the very richest harvest of blessings. He will make all things work together for good. GOLDEN NUGGET!
Jesus never has to be in a hurry. He has His own timeline and will reach us in His own time and way, therefore out of what may seem to be a dark, tangled, inexplicable maze of providence; will spring forth light to fill our souls with praise and adoration.
My foregoing provoking thought may help us to understand and appreciate how Jesus dealt with the sisters of Bethany when he heard their trouble. I believe He felt there was much more involved in the situation than the mere matter of relieving those whom He deeply loved. The glory of God had to be considered. Hence, He says, “This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby.” He saw in this case an occasion for the display of the divine glory, and not merely for the exhibition of personal affection, however deep and real that was, for we read “Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus.”
Notice Saints, in the judgment of our blessed and adorable Lord, the glory of God took precedence over every other consideration. Neither personal affection nor personal fear had precedence over God getting all the glory. He was ruled in all things by the glory of God. From the manger to the cross, in life and in death, in all His words, in all His works, in all His ways, His devoted heart was set with a firm and unalterable purpose for the glory of God. Hence, though it might have been a good thing to relieve His friends in distress, it was far better and a higher call to glorify God; and we may be sure that the beloved family of Bethany sustained no loss by Jesus’ delay, because it rendered an opportunity for greater.
Let us all remember this in our seasons of trial and pressure. It is a very essential point, and when fully apprehended, will prove a very deep and blessed source of consolation. It will help us tremendously to deal with sickness, pain, death, bereavement, sorrow, and poverty. What a blessing it was for Jesus to be able to stand beside the sick bed of a friend and say, “This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God!” This shows us that faith has privileges. Yes, not only in the sick chamber, but by the open grave, the true believer may see the beams of Gods divine glory shining forth over all.
There is no doubt that the skeptics disagreed with the statement “The sickness is not unto death.” They may of argued on the fact that Lazarus did die. But saints our faith reasons not from appearances: it brings God in, and there finds a divine solution for all our difficulties. Faith sees God above and beyond all circumstances. It reasons from God downward, not from circumstances upward. Sickness and death are nothing in the presence of God’s divine power. All difficulties disappear from the pathway of faith. They are, as Joshua and Caleb assured their unbelieving brethren, they are simply bread for all of us that walk by it.
My brothers and sisters, our faith can wait for God’s time, knowing that His timing is best. It staggers not, even though it appears that Jesus may seem to linger. We must rest with calmness in the assurance of His unchanging love and unerring wisdom. This type of faith fills our heart with the sweetest confidence that if there is a delay it does not mean denial! And if the relief is not sent all at once it is for the best, inasmuch as “all things work together for good to them that love God,” Faith enables those who are the happy possessors of it to vindicate God amid the greatest pressure, and to know and confess that Gods’ divine love always does the very best for those who possess it! Hence I will continue to “Just Give It Too JESUS” until my change come! What about You! Have a “JESUS DAY”