Jeremiah 26: 1-9
Psalm 69: 8-10, 14
John 11: 19-27
Today we meet Martha again but this time it is for a sad reason – Lazarus, her brother, has died. Martha was waiting for Jesus to come. She had written to him to tell him to come but he decided to delay. What a disappointment this must have been for Martha and Mary. He even missed the funeral and Lazarus was now in his final resting place on earth, inside a tomb. So when Jesus eventually arrived Martha went out to meet him. Again she is very frank with Jesus – ‘If you had been here my brother would not have died.’ Is that any way to speak to Jesus?! For some her initial reaction to Jesus may come across as plain rude. But the second half of her sentence is the most important part – ‘but even now I know that God will grant whatever you ask of him.’
What follows is a very deep revelation by Jesus to Martha of who he is – ‘I am the resurrection and the life. Anyone who believes in me, even though that person dies, will live.’ This is not about living forever on earth rather it is about Jesus giving us eternal life where we are in permanent union with God. This is altogether a new way of life that can start NOW and last forever.
Martha’s profession of faith is stunningly simple and comes straight from her heart:
‘Yes Lord, I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, the one who was to come into this world.’
Jesus asks us each the same question. What is your answer today and at the hour of your death – Yes or No?
Let us pray to Mary our mother, “Pray for us, sinners, now and at the hour of our death” so that we can make the right choice to be with God forever.
Victoria Raw is parishioner of Te Whetu O Te Moana, Star of the Sea Marlborough, NZ and is active in lay ministry.