Keep His Saying and Never See Death
(From a radio sermon of Bro. Julius Adewumi)
I will like to bring my sermon today from Jn.8:51. The Lord Jesus Christ was talking to the Jews and he said, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, If a man keep my saying, he shall never see death."
I read it again:
"Verily, verily, I say unto you,If a man keep my saying, he shall never see death.
Then said the Jews unto him, Now we know that thou hast a devil. Abraham is dead, and the prophets; and thou sayest, If a man keep my saying, he shall never taste of death.
Art thou greater than our father Abraham, which is dead? and the prophets are dead: whom makest thou thyself?
Jesus answered, If I honour myself, my honour is nothing: it is my Father that honoureth me; of whom ye say that he is your God:
Yet ye have not known him; but I know him: and if I should say, I know him not, I shall be a liar like unto you: but I know him, and keep his saying.
Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad." (Jn.8:51-56).
Now let me stop right there. My passage today is on verse 51, where the Lord said "verily, verily, I say unto you. If a man keep my saying, he shall never see death." I know many theologians have tried to spiritualize this verse. However from this discussion, it should be clear that the Lord was talking about physical death, that it is possible for Jesus to keep men alive that we do not see physical death. As a matter of fact, from Genesis chapter 3, when Adam and Eve disobeyed and were driven out of the garden of Eden, the punishment or curse placed upon them, which extended to the whole mankind, included physical death. Many preachers may say he died spiritually. But Adam died in that same "day" according as the bible has said "a day with the Lord is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. When the scripture said "In the day that thou eateth thereof, thou shalt surely die", it was prophetic and symbolic, pointing to "a day" with the Lord which is a thousand years. Therefore, Adam died within that millenium: "And all the days that Adam lived were nine hundred and thirty years: and he died." (Gen.5:5).
This is the reason why Adam did not pass the 1000 year mark. And all the descendants of Adam: None of them pass the 1000 year mark which would have been one day before the Lord. All of them died within the 1000 year-day except one person who pleased the Lord. Enoch was translated that he should not see death. Before his translation, it was recorded that he pleased God. (Gen.5:24; Heb.11:5&6).
The Lord Jesus Christ now gave us this promise, "verily,verily, I say unto you. If a man keep my saying, he shall never see death." The Lord was telling us that he has this power and authority to keep any man alive, like he keeps Enoch alive. This is the faith which was revealed to the sons of Adam, that what Adam lost in the garden of Eden, the immortality Adam lost in the garden of Eden due to the sin, anyone who can come back to God and please God, can recover the immortality. "Then began men to call upon the name of the Lord". (Gen.4:26).
God has revealed to mankind that the immortality which Adam lost in the garden, can be reclaimed, if men will come back to God. The Lord Jesus declared it again "if a man keep my saying, he shall never see death."
I am laying this teaching foundation here to point out that the Lord Jesus brought to mankind power over physical death.
When The Lord Jesus came to Bethany to raise Lazarus from the grave, he declared it again:
"Now a certain man was sick, named Lazarus, of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha."
v.3 :"Therefore his sisters sent unto him, saying, Lord, behold he whom thou lovest is sick.
When Jesus heard that, he said, This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the son of God might be glorified thereby.
Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus. When he had heard therefore that he was sick, he abode two days still in the same place where he was. Then after that saith he to his disciples, Let us go into Judaea again."
You should wonder: the Lord Jesus loved Mary, Martha, and Lazarus! yet when he heard the news, he stayed away two more days. In effect, what he wanted to happen was that Lazarus should die so that the Lord could manifest his glory. That was why he said "this sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the son of God might be glorified thereby." Now Lazarus died, and by the time Jesus Christ came into the town, Lazarus was already 4-days in the grave.
Now I will jump to verse 14: "Then said Jesus unto them (his disciples) plainly, Lazarus is dead. And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, to the intent ye may believe; nevertheless let us go unto him.
Then said Thomas, which is called Didymus, unto his fellow disciples, let us also go, that we may die with him."
But Jesus was not going there to die with him! He was going there to bring him back to life.
v.17: "When Jesus came, he found that he had lain in the grave four days already."
I am pointing to this story to show that the Lord Jesus came and demonstrated his power over physical death. When he said, "if a man keep my saying, he shall never see death", he was telling us he has the power to keep anybody alive. Just think about it! We, believers, at this endtime are saying the rapture is coming. If we believe the rapture is coming, and that we, who are alive and remain to that day, are going to disappear and go to meet Jesus in the air, and shall ever be with the Lord; Do you not know that we shall not die physically? If we shall not die physically, then our body must be given the supernatural immortality, because from that day forward, there shall be no death for us, nor ever shall be. In that case, it has to be that the power of Jesus is able to keep us alive forever. You may say, that is only for those who go in the rapture. The Lord Jesus has stated it here in the scriptures, "if a man keep my saying, he shall never see death." He is the life, and he is the resurrection. (Resurrection for those dead to be brought back to life, and life for those who are alive to be kept alive forever.) It's Jesus who will keep us alive when we go in the translation!
In verse 18, "Now Bethany was nigh unto Jerusalem, about fifteen furlongs off: And many of the Jews came to Martha and Mary, to comfort them concerning their brother.
Then Martha, as soon as she heard that Jesus was coming, went and met him: but Mary sat still in the house. Then said Martha unto Jesus, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died. But I know, that even now, whatsoever thou wilt ask of God, God will give it thee.
Jesus saith unto her, Thy brother shall rise again.
Martha saith unto him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day."
In effect, Martha was saying she believed in the resurrection of the dead in the end of the world. But Jesus Christ was going to make her know that he meant much more than the resurrection at the end of the world.
In verse 25, "Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:
And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?"
This was a strong statement from the Lord Jesus Christ. He said "he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live". That was talking about resurrection of the dead. He said also "whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die". That was talking about the life that shall keep us alive so that we never see death. Believeth thou this?
Martha said, "Yea, Lord: I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world."
The message I am presenting at this hour, which the Lord laid upon my heart, is to make the saints of God know that Christ gave us power over physical death. When the Lord sent the disciples out, he charged them to heal the sick, and raise the dead. Not many people has been doing that, yet the power is given to the body of Christ to raise the dead back to life, because Jesus Christ has conquered death and hell.
Let's read again in Revelation chapter 1 verses 17-18:
"When I saw him I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last: I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death."
Now that was declared before apostle John. He said "I am he that liveth"! When did he live? He liveth before he came into the world, and he liveth when he was on earth; "and was dead", who was dead? This was God talking. God said he was dead! When was he dead? When he came as Jesus Christ the messiah and was crucified, and he died; "and, behold, I am alive for evermore", when he rose again from the dead, he is alive now for evermore; "and has the keys of hell and of death": Christ went below and took the keys away from the Devil.
We, saints, must believe this and not fear the devil anymore. The power of death which satan had, has been taken away from him. Let's read it again in the book of Hebrews. The devil was the one who had been killing mankind. The devil is the author of death. Christ has now taken the key away from the devil and He has abolished death. (2Tim.1:10).
In Heb.2, we see that God put all things under man whom he had created, though man lost it. In verse 8, it reads: Thou has put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him.
But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man."
In short, Jesus Christ tasted death for us. When he was crucified, he tasted death for mankind.
"For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.
For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren, saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee. And again, I will put my trust in him. And again, Behold I and the children which God hath given me.
"For as much then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself, likewise, took part of the same;(listen to this,) that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil."
Listen to that again: talking about Jesus Christ, it implies, Jesus partook of flesh and blood, that "through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil".
"And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage."
In short, Jesus Christ came to deliver mankind, we, who through fear of death were subject to bondage. Men had been afraid of death since the beginning, and because of death, multitudes had joined occultic groups, worshipped idols, some had worshipped satan for fear of death, to appease whoever was causing death and diseases. But Christ came, and for our sake, he brought power over diseases; he brought power over sicknesses. He gave command to the disciples to heal the sick, and raise the dead. He said further "verily, verily, I say unto you, if a man keep my saying, he shall never see death." He is able to keep anyman alive, and if it seems necessary, he will take any individual physically out of here like he took away Enoch, and Elijah. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, and today, and forever! Praise the Lord.
That is the message the Lord put on my heart. He has brought power over death. However to enjoy this power of the Lord, you must be born again. If you are not born again, you have got to accept the Lord Jesus as your Lord and Savior, and become a new creature in Christ. You've got to be a disciple and keep his saying.
If you are already a disciple of Christ, consider what Jesus Christ asked Martha: "Believeth thou this?" Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing, by the word of God. You must remember that the just shall live by faith. The body of Christ had problem believing this message from the first church. He said "if a man keep my saying he shall never see death". While keeping the saying of Jesus, you still have to believe in this power of Jesus. When he said, "whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die; believeth thou this?" Individual has got to believe that aspect of the power of Jesus in order to enjoy this benefit. It is similar to all the promises of God. If someone claims to be a Christian, and refuses to believe the scripture about healing which said "by whose stripes ye were healed", the fellow will not enjoy divine healing.
Jesus said," Verily, verily I say unto you, if a man keep my saying, he shall never see death". We must walk with Jesus, and believe in this aspect of his power to enjoy the benefit.
I pray that the Lord will give everyone of us, believers, the grace to have revelative understanding of the word, and thereby believe and keep his saying, and please God, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen!
Bro. Julius Adewumi
Gospel Distribution Ministry,