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Today's Gospel + short theological explanation

Sunday 5th (A) of Lent

Gospel text (Jn 11,1-45): There was a sick man named Lazarus who was from Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. It was the same Mary who anointed the Lord with perfume and wiped his feet with her hair. Her brother Lazarus was sick. So the sisters sent this message to Jesus, «Lord, the one you love is sick» (…). When Jesus came, He found that Lazarus had been in the tomb for four days. As Bethany is near Jerusalem, about two miles away, many Jews had come to Martha and Mary to offer consolation at their brother's death.

When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went to meet him while Mary remained sitting in the house. And she said to Jesus, «If you had been here, my brother would not have died. But I know that whatever you ask from God, God will give you». Jesus said, «Your brother will rise again». Martha replied, «I know that he will rise in the resurrection, at the last day». But Jesus said to her, «I am the resurrection; whoever believes in me, though he die, shall live. Whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?». Martha then answered, «Yes, Lord, I have come to believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, he who is coming into the world» (…).

Christ pulls down the wall of death

EDITORIAL TEAM evangeli.net (based on texts by Benedict XVI) (Città del Vaticano, Vatican)

Today we listen to the “voice of faith” from the lips of Martha, Lazarus’ sister. Jesus repeats: “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live”. This is the true newness which abounds and exceeds every border! Christ pulls down the wall of death and in him dwells all the fullness of God, who is life, eternal life. Therefore death did not have power over him and the raising of Lazarus is a sign of his full dominion over physical death which, before God, resembles sleep.

However there is another death, which cost Christ the hardest struggle, even the price of the Cross: it is spiritual death and sin which threaten to ruin the existence of every human being.

—To overcome this death, Christ died and his Resurrection is not a return to past life, but an opening to a new reality, a “new land” united at last with God’s Heaven.