#52 Women of the Bible: Widow of Nain
As Jesus was coming into the city of Nain with his disciples and a large crowd following Him, He saw a dead man being carried on a wicker-work bier out of the city for burial. He was the only son of a widow woman and her grief must’ve been enormous (Luke 7:11-15). First her husband and now her only son had left her bereft of any reason to live.
Jesus was moved to the depths of His being and told her not to go on weeping. He went up to the bier and held onto it, so stopping the procession. He commanded the young man to get up. He didn’t say “In the name of God, arise”. He said, I say to you, arise” thus proving HE was God.
The young man promptly sat up and started talking and the people watching declared that Jesus was a prophet. They had missed realising that this was the one who alone had the authority over death, the one who could free them from sin.
Their forbears had been living under Babylonian rule and Jesus was seen by Ezekiel as a man, high above the firmament in a sapphire throne with fire all around it, yet these people of Israel refused to listen and were rebellious (Ez. 1:26-28, 2:7). After seeing a majestic vision like that, you can imagine the passion with which Ezekiel preached yet God said, “But the people of Israel won’t listen to you any more than they listen to me! For the whole lot of them are hard-hearted and stubborn” (Ez. 3:7 NLT).
Here now were the people of Israel living under Roman rule, and they were no further advanced. Not even the raising of a young man from the dead could arouse them out of their stupor. How many times had they actually seen someone who had died return to life?
What would it take for people living today to realise that this was Jesus, the Son of the living God? If the raising to life from the dead wasn’t enough, could the death and resurrection of Jesus for your sins be enough for you to believe in Him as your Lord and Saviour? This was the price God was prepared to pay for you to be free from sin and death so that He can live with you:
“I will make my home among them. I will be their God, and they will be my people” (Ez. 37:27 NLT quoted by Paul in 2 Cor. 6:16).