Giving Thanks in Advance

One of the most surprising things Christ Jesus ever did was to give thanks to God before raising Lazarus from the dead. After asking that the stone which sealed the tomb be taken away, and before the apparent miracle had been accomplished, the Master "lifted up his eyes, and said, Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me." John 11:41;

The procedure was so unusual that he apparently deemed it wise to offer an explanation for those who stood around, audibly saying to God, "I knew that thou hearest me always: but because of the people which stand by I said it, that they may believe that thou hast sent me." Then, "he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth." Lazarus came forth, and Jesus said, "Loose him, and let him go."

The procedure was not entirely unknown to the most observing of his disciples, for on an earlier occasion he had done something similar when he fed the five thousand with five loaves and two fishes. Although this event is narrated in all four of the Gospels, the beloved Apostle John alone is careful to state specifically that Jesus gave thanks before distributing the food to his disciples for sharing with the multitude(see John 6:11). He was obviously giving thanks not only for the five loaves and two fishes but for the assurance that enough food would be provided for all, with much left over.

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Freedom from Fatigue
January 31, 1970

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