Many in the world today continue to question whether Jesus is God, even as people did during His time here on earth. Some acknowledge Him as a great healer, some as a good teacher, but many still see Him as just a man. A good man, they say, but just that. Just a man.
But what did Jesus Himself say? We have covered Jesus' more direct claims to deity in other articles. Here we will tackle one of His not quite so direct and yet just as startling pronouncements.
We catch up with our story after the death of Jesus' good friend, Lazarus. Lazarus' sister Martha is understandably distraught and takes her pain to Jesus but, sadly, she is like the many who failed to grasp Who it was they were with:
21 Then Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if You had been here, my brother wouldn’t have died.
22 Yet even now I know that whatever You ask from God, God will give You.”
Martha can only think that Jesus might have healed her brother had He gotten to him in time, while recognizing Jesus' powerful "connection" to God. But Jesus needs to show her He is much more than she believes Him to be, and so He tells her what He is about to do:
23 “Your brother will rise again,” Jesus told her.
24 Martha said, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.”
She missed it. She truly thinks He is only just a healer! And so Jesus speaks much more bluntly:
25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in Me, even if he dies, will live.
Jesus has dropped His bombshell.
He doesn't point her to an "external" God.
He doesn't tell her to put her faith in Someone else.
He says, "Believe in Me."
He says He is the resurrection and the life.
Why can Jesus say that?
Because as He said in the preceding chapter, "The Father and I are one." John 10:30
26 Everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die—ever. Do you believe this?”
27 “Yes, Lord,” she told Him, “I believe You are the Messiah, the Son of God, who comes into the world.”
Bingo! A theologically correct answer, but Martha still didn't get it.
Moments later, when Jesus called for the stone to be rolled away from Lazarus' tomb, Martha reminded Him that it had been four days since Lazarus had died, and that decay would have set in.
As the King James so unforgettably puts it:
"Lord, by this time he stinketh." John 11:39
To which Jesus replies,
And she did. All the people around Him did.
Jesus raised Lazarus back from the dead, giving life and health back to what just minutes before had been a rotting corpse.
Just a few chapters back, Gospel writer John had recorded these words from Jesus:
21 And just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, so the Son also gives life to anyone He wants to. John 5
Just as the Father raises the dead...
so the Son also gives life to anyone He wants to.
Do those sound like the words of a mere man to you?
Jesus the Resurrection and the Life
Where Does Jesus Say, "I Am YHWH (God)" in the Bible?
Jesus is the First and the Last
Who Does Jesus Think He Is?
Jesus is God in John 10