- Published: 12 December 2010
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I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in Me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: and whosoever liveth and believeth in Me shall never die.
By not observing the context, all kinds of strange doctrines have been gotten from this passage of Scripture. Some even claim that believers do not die, but somehow all we have met die some time. Death is hard to explain away.
Read the whole chapter carefully. Note especially verse 24. Do not miss any words. Martha had hoped that the Lord would come soon enough to heal her brother. But now Lazarus is dead. Martha expresses the hope that even then the Lord might raise her brother, in fact she believes that anything the Lord asks of His Father will be done.
The Lord makes the remark that Lazarus will rise again. Martha takes that right up, for she is a believer and has the hope of the Jews, so she knew that her brother would rise the last day.
The last day, this is the key we have been looking for. It is the key to the next 2 verses. It is left out, but it is up to us to fill the ellipsis.
So the Lord tells her that in that last day He will be the Worker of resurrection and the Giver of life. And that in that day He will raise all dead believers, those that sleep in Jesus, making Him the resurrection. And those believers that are living in that last day will never die, for He will give life to them. Now we can know what He meant when He said, I am the resurrection, and the life. I AM is none other then Jehovah and He will bring immortality to all believers at the last day.
Paul speaks of the same thing when he wrote 1 Cor 15:51,52. He makes plain that in the last day not all will be sleeping in death, but that all will be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye. It will be at the last trump ( Rev 11:15) where the Lord takes over the kingdoms of this world and rules. This was no secret, for the Lord had told the same thing to Martha years before. Those who try to make you believe that this passage in 1 Cor 15:51,52 is a part of the administration of the mystery will have a hard time convincing many that this hope of the Jews is also the hope of the church. Search and see!
But again in 1 Thes 4:15-17 we find the same message. It says that the living believers will not precede the dead or sleeping believers. The dead will rise and they with the living believers will be caught up into the air, not heaven, to meet the Lord as He comes to take over the kingdoms of this world and reign in Jerusalem on the throne of His father David. And note that the setting is with the voice of the archangel, and a trumpet. Also, if they are not going to heaven, where will they ever be with the Lord? If He is coming to the earth to set up His kingdom, then they will meet Him and come back with Him and be with Him for the age or millennium.
Once Paul hoped to take part in this event, but he gained a new hope ( Col 3:1-4) and resigned himself to death till that hope comes 2 Tim 4:6).