THE RESURRECTION AND THE LIFE (JN 11, PS 46)
Updated: Apr 3
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die…” - John 11:25-26
Jesus hears of Mary’s brother Lazarus falling ill. Jesus still waits a few days before leaving for Judea because he knew at that point Lazarus was “asleep”. But what Jesus really means is Lazarus was dead. But it was key that Jesus says sleeping because as verse 25-26 says, Jesus is the resurrection and the life. We who believe in Jesus will all be merely asleep when we die for, we will eventually be resurrected. And Jesus knew that the raising of Lazarus would deepen the disciple’s faith in Jesus as Lord. Jesus indeed raises Lazarus after he had been dead for four days. But not until he has Martha in front of the Jews affirm that she believed in him. This act not only deepened the faith of the disciples but many Jews who witnessed this also believed that Jesus was the Messiah.
In this passage, two things struck me. First, Jesus is the resurrection and the life. Reading that Jesus raised Lazarus on earth deepens my faith and assures me that we will be raised and have an eternal dwelling in the heavens. It is key to pick up on in this passage that there is one thing we must do. As has been a theme throughout all of John and the Gospels, we must believe, though we will die, we shall live again in the resurrection. Secondly, Jesus knows that Mary and Martha believe but he asks them to say it anyway. We too must also believe in Jesus and tell others. Just as Martha when affirming her belief, she allowed for the miracle of raising Lazarus to be a witness of God’s glory to the Jews. We also must proclaim Christ so that as God works in our lives, he gets the credit, not us.