I AM THE RESURRECTION AND LIFE
Two Sundays ago, Jesus Christ revealed himself to the Samaritan woman at the well as the “water of life.” Last week in the story of the man born blind, Jesus said, “I am the light of the Lord.” Again and again, throughout the gospel of John, Jesus Christ uses different symbols to tell us about his true identity. In John 6:35, he says, “I am the bread of life”; In John 10:9, he says, “I am the door”; In John 10: 11, he says, “I am the good shepherd”; In John 14:6, he says, “I am the way, the truth and the life”; and in John 15:5, he says, “I am the vine.”
The story is a little different today in the wonderful gospel story of the raising of Lazarus to life. When Martha told Jesus of the death of his friend, Lazarus, his response is that, he is not dead. Martha obviously believed in the resurrection of the dead on the last day. Jesus Christ revealed his identity to Martha, “I am the resurrection and the life.” What is different in today’s story is that, Jesus Christ did not only identify himself as the resurrection and the life, he went ahead to show that he truly has power over life and death, and he brought Lazarus into life. For Mary and Martha, their situation was helpless; they had lost their beloved brother. Jesus overturned this situation and made it a happy one. Lazarus case looked hopeless at the time that Jesus arrived. Even though Martha believed that Jesus could bring Lazarus to life on the last day, she did not believe that Jesus would do it at that very moment. That is the reason Martha is saying to Jesus, he will stench because he has been buried for four days. Martha failed to understand that Jesus Christ is the resurrection and the life and he could bring Lazarus back to life whenever he wanted.
Saints, I do not know what you are going through right now – many of you may be Lazarus’ in one way or the other:
Ø You may be going through spiritual death right now. Your whole life is empty. You have lost your faith in God. Religion is all about the external practices without anything coming from within you. When you pray, it seems like nothing is happening. You are at that point of crying, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me.” Know that Jesus Christ is the resurrection and the life and he can and will restore you to the fullness of the spirit.
Ø Some of you may be going through physical deaths right now. You are dead to sickness. You are living every day of your life counting when you will die. You have an incurable disease and you are told there is no cure. You are hiding your health situation and dying in your loneliness. I have good news for you today, the resurrection and the life can restore you.
Ø Talk about financial deaths. That is what many people are going through right now. You are afraid your home would be foreclosed. Your credit card debt is piling up; you are owing income tax and the mere thought of April 15 coming next month scares you to death because you do not have the money to pay. I want to assure you that the resurrection and the life will see you through this.
Ø Some of you are dead to family. Your wife or husband is unfaithful to you. That initial love you had when you got married is dead. Your children are really making you impatient and they aggravate you. There is chaos in your home. You may even be contemplating divorce. Jesus Christ has some news for you today. He will bring your family and love back to life.
Ø Some of you are dead to your work. There is no motivation when you get up in the morning to go to work. You have not received a pay increase in five years, yet the prices of things are going up. You are even contemplating quitting your job, but you are afraid because you will not find another job. The resurrection and the life is saying to you today, “My promise to you is that you will not be at the tail but at the head. Don’t give up.”
Ø You may be dead to sin right now. You have lost your conscience and sin no longer perturbs you. You do not know how to get out of the bondage of sin you have placed yourself into. Jesus Christ is saying to you today, “that is the reason I gave you the sacrament of reconciliation. Go and get yourself resurrected.”
The question today is, do you believe that Jesus Christ can overturn your situation? Jesus Christ wants to raise you back up and keep you up. This is only possible if you live in hope and faith.