Monday, November 4, 2013

The Sleeping Dead

This entry is third in a series entitiled "Christology in Context." Your comments and feedback are appreciated.

Let's do something different. I'd like talk about things that Jesus did, but this time, I have no lengthy expositions, scholarly citations, or appeals to historicity.

Instead, I offer you two stories and three questions. First, please read Mark 5:22-43. I'll wait.

Finished reading? Thanks. Please note these two parts of the story:
  1. Jesus stops on his way to heal Jairus' daughter, and it seems that she dies during that time.
  2. Those who mourn the girl know that she is dead. Jesus' claim that she is asleep is clearly ridiculous.

Now please read John 11:1-44. Try not to skim over it. Do really read it.

Thank you. Both of these miracle stories describe Jesus restoring life to two dead people. It could be enough for us to simply ask ourselves whether or not we believe that Jesus actually did those things. That is a question of personal faith, and I leave it to you to ask it of yourself.

Instead, I want to pose these three questions: 
  1. If Jesus could have chosen to heal Jairus' daughter and Lazarus before they had died, why didn't he choose to do so?
  2. Why would he refer to these dead people as being "asleep?" 
  3. If these stories are true accounts, and Jesus did in fact call these two back to life, by simply speaking to them, then what questions should you and I be asking about Jesus? 

Please think about these questions, then post your thoughts on them below. Thanks in advance for your comments. I look forward to reading and responding to them.

Kyle Suter