TEXT: John 11:17-37
INTRO: Tonight we will focus on a secondary lesson about facing life’s misery in a righteous manner.
I. GRIEF IS A PERSONAL EXPRESSION.
A.READ 11:17. The statement that grief is personal means that every aspect of it is processed and practiced in an individual and personal way. See Lk. 10 for original story on Martha and Mary.
B. There is no strictly “proper” way to grief – as far as the world is concerned! But for believers, there is more to the issue.
1 Thess. 4:13, , “We don’t want you to be uninformed, brothers, concernin those who are asleep, so that you will not grieve like the rest, who have no hope.”
II. THE MAJOR QUESTION OF GRIEF IS “WHY.”
A.READ 11:21-22. “If you had been here, my brother wouldn’t have died.” “WHY were You not here? WHY did You let this happen?”
Vs. 32, Mary’s response – also a “why?”
Vs. 37, even the professional grievers, the onlookers, ask, “Couldn’t He who opened the blind man’s eyes also have kept this man from dying?”
B. The WHY question at times of grief is the strongest confession we humans have of admitting we are not in control and we want to know WHY!
III. IN THE END GRIEF IS THE FRUIT OF A FALLEN WORLD.
A. READ Vss. 33-35.
1.) First, Jesus grew angry in His Spirit.
2.) Second, Jesus wept.
His anger and His tears were a result of the great need for faith and the great lack of it in the face of trouble.
A. In the fallen world, even the greatest of news is often tossed aside in favor of self-pity and refusal to have faith.
Grief is the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
I mentioned in the beginning that our focus tonight was not on the primary purpose of the passage of Scripture we are looking at, but a secondary purpose. 1 Thessalonians 4, speaks to this same subject, saying, “We don’t want you to be uninformed, brothers, concernin those who are asleep, so that you will not grieve like the rest, who have no hope.” Jesus will take us through the grief and deliver us to the other side in peace and security. All He asks is that we trust Him in the process.