Photo by Teona Swift

John 11:38–44 ‘Take off the grave clothes and let him go.’ (v44)

In this story of delays and faith, Jesus is about to perform a great miracle. On hearing Lazarus is ill, He doesn’t go to help his friend straight away. When He does arrive at his home, Lazarus is dead and his sisters are deep in grief.

And yet, all is not lost. Jesus tells the grieving Martha, ‘I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; and whoever lives by believing in me will never die’ (John 11:25–26).

Then He raises her brother from the dead! His instruction to the bystanders is for them to remove Lazarus’ grave clothes and to ‘let him go’. No longer bound by death, Lazarus is free!

As Christians, it is possible to still be bound in old grave clothes. We are out of the tomb of condemnation and sin, we have received God’s gift of life through Jesus Christ, yet somehow we don’t feel the level of freedom we know is available.

Maybe we are still caught up and weighed down by our old lives; perhaps by guilt, or shame, or old patterns of thought and actions that don’t honour God or help us grow in our walk with Him.

But if Jesus is the ‘resurrection and the life’, this surely means we can live in the resurrection of the new life that He brings us, day by day. Our hope is in Him for the future: believing in who He is, and what He has accomplished on the cross means that we will ‘never die’; we are assured of eternity with Him. But right now, today, let’s make sure we are living in the freedom of life He offers.


A Prayer To Make:
‘Father, thank You that Your Son has come to set me free. He is in Himself life, and I want to walk in the life He brings. Thank You, Lord. Amen.’

An Action To Take:
Are you walking in the freedom Jesus promises? Are there any areas where you need release? Write down any thoughts. Talk to Jesus about this now.

Scripture To Consider:
Ps. 119:41–48; Isa. 61:1–9; John 8:31–47; Jas 1:19–27

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Micha Jazz is Director of Resources at Waverley Abbey, UK.