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His Eternal Gift From Death Into Life

 
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Prayer-Soldier
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 04, 2014 1:25 pm    Post subject: His Eternal Gift From Death Into Life Reply with quote

His Eternal Gift From Death Into Life

Scripture:


Therefore prophesy, and say to them: Thus said the Lord God: Behold I will open your graves, and will bring you out of your sepulchers, O my people: and will bring you into the land of Israel. And you shall know that I am the Lord, when I shall have opened your sepulchers, and shall have brought you out of your graves, O my people: And shall have put my spirit in you, and you shall live, and I shall make you rest upon your own land: and you shall know that I the Lord have spoken, and done it, said the Lord God. (Ezekiel 37:12-14)

And they who are in the flesh cannot please God. But you are not in the flesh, but the spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. And if Christ be in you, the body indeed is dead, because of sin: but the spirit lives, because of justification. And if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you; he that raised up Jesus Christ, from the dead shall quicken also your mortal bodies, because of his Spirit that dwells in you. (Romans 8:8-11)

Now there was a certain man sick, named Lazarus, of Bethania, of the town of Mary and of Martha her sister. (And Mary was she that anointed the Lord with ointment and wiped his feet with her hair: whose brother Lazarus was sick.) His sisters therefore sent to him, saying: Lord, behold, he whom you love is sick. And Jesus hearing it, said to them: This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God: that the Son of God may be glorified by it. Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister Mary and Lazarus. When he had heard therefore that he was sick, he still remained in the same place two days. Then after that, he said to his disciples: Let us go into Judea again. The disciples say to him: Rabbi, the Jews but now sought to stone you. And go you there again? Jesus answered: Are there not twelve hours of the day? If a man walk in the day he stumbles not, because he sees the light of this world: But if he walk in the night, he stumbles, because the light is not in him. These things he said; and after that he said to them: Lazarus our friend sleeps: but I go that I may awake him out of sleep. His disciples therefore said: Lord, if he sleep, he shall do well. But Jesus spoke of his death: and they thought that he spoke of the repose of sleep. Then, therefore, Jesus said to them plainly: Lazarus is dead. And I am glad, for your sakes; that I was not there, that you may believe. But, let us go to him. Thomas, therefore, who is called Didymus, said to his fellow disciples: Let us also go, that we may die with him.

Jesus therefore came: and found that he had been four days already in the grave. (Now Bethania was near Jerusalem, about fifteen furlongs off.) And many of the Jews were come to Martha and Mary, to comfort them concerning their brother. Martha therefore, as soon as she heard that Jesus was come, went to meet him: but Mary sat at home. Martha therefore said to Jesus: Lord, if you had been here, my brother had not died. But now also I know that whatsoever you will ask of God, God will give it you. Jesus said to her: You brother shall rise again. Martha said to him: I know that he shall rise again, in the resurrection at the last day. Jesus said to her: I am the resurrection and the life: he that believes in me, although he be dead, shall live: And every one that lives and believes in me shall not die for ever. Do you believe this? She said to him: Yea, Lord, I have believed that you are Christ, the Son of the living God, who are come into this world. And when she had said these things, she went and called her sister Mary secretly, saying: The master is come and calls for you. She, as soon as she heard this, rises quickly and comes to him. For Jesus was not yet come into the town: but he was still in that place where Martha had met him. The Jews therefore, who were with her in the house and comforted her, when they saw Mary, that she rose up speedily and went out, followed her, saying: She goes to the grave to weep there.

When Mary, therefore, was come where Jesus was, seeing him, she fell down at his feet and said to him. Lord, if you had been here, my brother had not died. Jesus, therefore, when he saw her weeping, and the Jews that were come with her weeping, groaned in the spirit and troubled himself, and said: Where have you laid him? They say to him: Lord, come and see. And Jesus wept. The Jews, therefore, said: Behold how he loved him. But some of them said: Could not he that opened the eyes of the man born blind have caused that this man should not die?

Jesus, therefore, again groaning in himself, comes to the sepulcher. Now it was a cave; and a stone was laid over it. Jesus said: Take away the stone. Martha, the sister of him that was dead, said to him: Lord, by this time he stinks, for he is now of four days. Jesus said to her: Did not I say to you that if you believe, you shall see the glory of God? They took, therefore, the stone away. And Jesus lifting up his eyes, said: Father, I give you thanks that you have heard me. And I knew that you hear me always: but because of the people who stand about have I said it, that they may believe that you have sent me. When he had said these things, he cried with a loud voice: Lazarus, come forth. And presently he that had been dead came forth, bound feet and hands with winding bands. And his face was bound about with a napkin. Jesus said to them: Loose him and let him go. Many, therefore, of the Jews, who were come to Mary and Martha and had seen the things that Jesus did, believed in him.
(John 11:1-45)

Reflection:

Our God is the God of life, therefore, those who have Him within their heart hold within them the promise of eternal life. Though our bodies may pass from the world, He is the One who will raise us to His kingdom. As we receive His Holy Spirit, we also receive His love. His eternal love is the inheritance of the faithful, bequeathed to them from the cross and made eternal through His resurrection.

In this world, we are vulnerable to sin and struggle daily against its temptations. What we do to please the world curries no favor with God, but what we do to fulfill His commandments to love pleases Him greatly. Blessed are those who invite the Holy Spirit within them, for the Holy Spirit is love and the light of life. Though the body can do nothing to earn a place in heaven, our belief in Him allows us to receive the forgiveness promised through His sacrifice. As we keep the Holy Spirit within us, we keep Him within us and the eternal life which only He can give. The evil one can only offer darkness and death, which is the wage of those who fall to his deceptions and do not seek the grace, mercy and forgiveness of God the Father through His only begotten Son.

It was so the works of God and His power of life over death could be seen that Lazarus passed from the world. Though many weeped and mourned at His passing, Jesus knew Lazarus was only asleep to the world; but through the Son, the glory of God would be seen through the raising of Lazarus. Blessed are those who witnessed, for in their witnessing, they came to believe; but the gift of life in this world through which we may learn and grow is not the greatest of gifts. The greatest of gifts is the love only He can give and the eternal life of peace in His kingdom.

Though Jesus was troubled by the pain and mourning of Mary, Martha and all who loved Lazarus; He did not bring Lazarus back to the world only for their blessing, but for the blessing of all who would see and believe in the power and glory of God. His promise, though, is not to keep us in this world, but to raise us to the blessing of His kingdom.

The moment waits for us all for when the time in this world with those we love will come to an end either through their passing or ours. We do not know the day or the hour, nor what time we will have to share words of love. As we face the moment where the time we share in this existence will be no more, we face the pain of separation and the void once filled by words, a touch or a kiss. Though we may pray such moments will not come because of the pain which will follow within our hearts, we should pray that the soul of the one we love will receive His warm embrace and will forever know His peace and love; for if this is what our loved ones receive, what more could we ever ask for them. In prayer, we should offer thanks and praise that He does not take what is finite from us, but gives to us the eternal blessings of His love and eternal life in His kingdom.

May the peace and blessings of the Lord be with you always,
Prayer Soldier

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