Lazarus was raised from the dead, brought back to life but was still bound by his death shroud. When he came from the tomb he needed to be set free from that which confined him in death. Though the Lord had come to return life to Lazarus he couldn’t walk as the living, his feet were still tied up as if he were dead. How many are walking as if dead while filled with the life of the Lord Jesus Christ?
We were dead in our transgressions, each of us was dead, that is something that we need to understand. In our sin we were as dead as Lazarus, entombed by his family and waiting for the voice of the Lord Jesus. What was it that God told Adam? “‘You shall not eat from it or touch it, lest you die.’” (Genesis 3:3[b]). That death started from that moment.
When people come and tell you about Jesus, you may not realize it, but that is God calling you from the dead, calling you from the tomb! The gospel, and you may not realize this, but the gospel is the voice of Jesus calling you from the grave, just as He did with Lazarus. So when people come telling you about the gospel that is God calling you from the dead. So when you put your faith in that, life comes in you.
I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.John 10:10[b] (NAsb)
But when we hear that message, put our faith in the gospel, we come back to life, but we still have death clothes binding us. In Lazarus’ case his feet, his hands, his eyes were still wrapped up in death clothes, but for some of us it is our emotions that are wrapped up in death. You have life in you alright but your emotions stink. Are your thoughts still wrapped up in death clothes? Are your thoughts still tied to the grave, pulling you down, instead of lifting you up?
Are you still angry, angry all the time, making the excuse ‘that is just my personality’ or ‘that is just how he is’? Being angry all the time is not a personality, it is a personality disorder. Sometimes we take comfort is saying ‘I just wear my emotions on my sleeve’, but no, you need to be healed, to be rid of the death clothes.
Anything that is bringing you down has to go, because we are going up! The Lord said “Unbind him, and let him go.” (John 11:44[b]). Life must overwhelm death! That part of you that still wrapped in death, still bound to the flesh, must be permeated with life. We need to deal with our death clothes, with the parts of our old life that prevent us from being whole, because the Lord has come to make us whole.
So today, if you are filled with the life given by the Lord Jesus Christ, but still confined by the things that were your portion in death, it is time to be set free. It is time to be cut free from the anger, from the alcohol, from the drugs, from the anxiety, from the depression, from the thoughts and emotions that overwhelm. Now is the time to seek fellowship, to find people and groups of people that speak the life, speak the gospel into the strongholds that are binding you to the grave.