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Daily Reading: 3rd February 2015

John 11.43-44 cont.

43  And saying these things He cried out with a loud voice: “Lazarus, come out.”

44 The one who had died and had been bound hands and feet with grave clothes, and his face bound with a napkin came out. Jesus said: “Untie him and let (release) him go.”

Winston Churchill is famously quoted as saying that democracy is the worst form of government, but that he had not found anything better.

We live in a country that values freedom. We are relatively free to travel where we wish, with no hindrance. We value the freedom of speech that we have, the freedom to choose which political party governs us. Whereas there are many countries where the inhabitants are not free and their governments are repressive, seeking to bind them to their political ideologies.

Yet we know that even in our ‘free’ country there are many rules and regulations that we are bound by.

Lazarus was a man who was bound by death, and also by the burial bandages.

When Jesus called him out of the tomb he was still bound by the burial bandages, therefore, Jesus gives the instruction for the bandages that bound Lazarus to be untied.

He was alive, but was still bound. Jesus had raised him from death, but he was still restricted by the bandages of death.

And this is how it can be for us. If we are not careful we can still be bound by the sins of our past. Yet this is not necessary, because when Jesus called us out of darkness into His wonderful light we repented of our sins and He has forgiven us and cleansed us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1.9). In other words, Jesus has untied the bandages of sin that formerly bound us.

God’s word tells us that when we are born again we are a new person (creation): [17] What this means is that those who become Christians become new persons. They are not the same anymore, for the old life is gone. A new life has begun! – 2 Corinthians 5.17 (NLT).

This really does mean that the past has no hold over us, because Jesus has set us free. We are only bound by the past to the extent that we allow the past to control us. The reality is that for all who receive Jesus as their Lord and Saviour the past is consigned to the past.

Jesus has removed the bandages of the past and set us free.

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