“Didn’t I tell you that you will see God’s glory if you believe?” (John 11:40)
John 11 tells the moving and powerful story of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead. Jesus instructs Martha to “remove the stone” that covered the entrance to Lazarus’s grave. Then He asks this extraordinary question: “Didn’t I tell you that you will see God’s glory if you believe?”
What a powerful way to describe the miracle. Evidence of God’s glory! Proof of His character! An undeniable, irrefutable example of His power!
On an earlier occasion, Jesus had chided the folk of His home town Nazareth for their lack of faith. And Mark adds that “He could do no miracle there except that He laid His hands on a few sick people and healed them” (Mark 6:5).
If we believed more, perhaps we’d see the hand of God (the glory of God) more often, more clearly, and more powerfully. But I so often feel like the father desperate for the deliverance of his son: “I do believe. Help my unbelief!” (Mark 9:24)
I want to believe more, and see God more. How can I?
I have periodically proposed that we exchange the word “trust” for the word “believe.” It captures the essence of the original Greek term very nicely. It’s not a matter of believing more about God, but learning to trust Him more; to trust Him in the details of our lives; to trust His love and grace; to trust His Presence and power; to trust His sovereignty and His will; to trust His Word and His promises; to trust Him with our present and our future; to trust Him with our family and our friends.
If we trust Him, we don’t argue or hesitate when He asks us to “remove the stone.”
If we trust Him, we don’t doubt or scoff when He promises a miracle.
It assumes, of course, that we are listening to Him; that we are attentive to Him. He speaks, we respond, He acts, and the glory of God is revealed in us, through us, and around us. As Paul wrote to the Christians at Colossae: “Christ among you, the hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27).
“Didn’t I tell you that you will see God’s glory if you believe?”
Let’s look for the signs of God’s glory today, whether in the sunrise or sunset, the faces of strangers, the wisdom of His Word, or in the lives of our families, friends, or colleagues. Let’s live today believing–trusting–that He will reveal Himself. And may we have eyes to see His glory as we “remove the stone” with expectation and hope.