The man who had died came out, his hands and feet bound with linen strips, and his face wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unbind him, and let him go.” (John 11:44 ESV)
Whenever we think of death, our minds immediately suppose the event where breath has left a human being. The blood has ceased to pump. The body is limp. A once lively individual is now left wilted and lifeless. Sometimes death is sudden and other times it’s slow and painful. Regardless, death is considered final.
Sin can be a form of dying for a believer. Once we come to Christ and choose to follow Him, we are tempted. Sometimes the temptations are obvious, but more often, our sin is a result of something slow and quiet. We don’t notice the numbing because it gradually grows until our once lively heart begins to feel heavy. Soon our attitude morphs into cynicism or even anger. Bit by bit, this sin spreads causing death to encompass us.
I think this story was written to show Jesus as the One who resurrects us. Yes, He raised Lazarus from physical death, but He also raises us when the load of sin weighs us down. He orders the grip of sin to “unbind” us and let us go. He insists we walk in freedom.
Finding ourselves in the midst sin causes us to feel crippled. We look at the circumstances rather than the Healer. We feel unworthy. But if Jesus can make a dead man rise after four days, surely He can raise us from sin. He will not only raise us up, He will be glorified in the process.
Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! (Psalm 139:23 ESV)