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Who or what determines your life?

Text: John 11: 17-32

Text verse: John 11: 26

In this section we get to know Martha better. We see her deep faith through this beautiful confession. When Jesus asks her if she believes in Him, she answers: “I believe that You are the Christ, the Son of God, who was to come into the world.”

However, we also see her haste and impatience. She does not take the time to really think about what Jesus is saying to her. She is already thinking about the next things she needs to do. She needs to let her sister know that Jesus is here.

And then she misses the glorious comfort that Jesus gives her.

This also often happens to us. You sit in church and think about the project you are working on at work. You want to finish this Bible study as soon as possible because you’ve got so much to do today.

Our lives are determined by all the things we have to do. The more we accomplish, the better we feel about ourselves.

With the question, “Do you believe this?” the Lord forces us to a standstill. Do you believe that life can only be found in Christ, or are you looking for life in all these many things you still have to and want to do?

Do we not focus too much on all the things we need to accomplish on our own?

Jesus used this opportunity with Martha to deepen her faith. He shows her that He alone has the power to raise someone from the dead. He can give life at any given time and as He pleases.

That is why Jesus uses the words “I am” in verse 25. These words are reminiscent of God telling Moses at the burning bush to tell the people that “I am” had sent him to them (Ex. 3:14).

Just as God saved His people from the bondage of Egypt, so Jesus saves us from the power of death. He overcomes all forms of death such as physical death, spiritual death and death in perdition.

“Do you believe this?” This is the question that each of us needs to think about deeply. This is the question Jesus asks Martha, but also each of us today. It is this faith that comforts and encourages in a madly rushed world. This is a question that forces us to stop and acknowledge that Christ determines our lives.

He alone gives meaning and purpose to a life that pursues the things that are passing.

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