Septuagesima Week – Sunday
[Note: Septuagesima means seventieth. Septuagesima Sunday is approximately seventy days before Easter.]
I am the Resurrection and the Life. – John 11:25.
It was now the Passover, that time when Jesus was to suffer and die. He was in Perea, east of the Jordan, several days’ journey from Jerusalem.
In Bethany, near Jerusalem, Lazarus, the brother of Martha and Mary, lay at the point of death. The sisters sent word to Jesus, saying: “Lord, behold, he whom Thou lovest is sick.” But Jesus, who loved Lazarus and his sisters, remained two days in the same place where He was. Then He went to Judea with His disciples, to raise Lazarus, who, meanwhile, had died.
When Martha heard that Jesus was near Bethany, she went to meet Him and said to Him: “Lord, if Thou hadst been here, my brother had not died. But I know that even now, whatsoever Thou wilt ask of God, God will give it Thee.” Saith Jesus: “Thy brother shall rise again.” Martha saith: “I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day.” Saith Jesus: “I am the Resurrection and the Life. He that believeth in Me, though he were dead, yet shall lie live; and whosoever liveth and believeth in Me shall never die. Believest thou this?” She saith: “Yea, Lord; I believe that Thou art the Christ, the Son of God, that should come into the world.”
Now Martha went and called Mary secretly, saying: “The Master is come, and calleth for thee.” Quickly Mary came to Jesus and fell down at His feet, weeping and saying: “Lord, if Thou hadst been here, my brother had not died.” Many Jews had come along and wept also. Jesus was troubled and said: “Where have ye laid him?” They said: “Lord, come and see.” Jesus wept. And they came to the tomb, the entrance of which was closed with a stone. Jesus saith: “Take ye away the stone.” Martha saith: “Lord, by this time he stinketh; for he hath been dead four days.” Jesus saith: “Said I not unto thee that, if thou wouldst believe, thou shouldst see the glory of God?”
Then they took away the stone. But Jesus lifted up his eyes and said: “Father, I thank Thee that Thou hast heard Me. And I knew that Thou hearest me always, but because of the people which stand by I said it, that they may believe that Thou hast sent Me.” And He cried with a loud voice: “Lazarus, come forth.” And he that was dead came forth, bound hand and foot with grave-clothes, and his face was bound about with a napkin. Jesus said unto them: “Loose him and let him go” (John 11:1-44).
Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, who came into the world for you, for me, and for all other sinners. He is the Resurrection and the Life. He has, with a willing “must” (Matthew 16:210), given His life into death “for all” (II Corinthians 5:15 a), as the “ransom for all” (I Timothy 2:6 a), as the God-anointed Redeemer for the world of sinners. The Apostle Peter declared that “Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the Just for the unjust” (I Peter 3:18 a). This was proof that God most certainly kept His promise concerning “the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world” (Revelation 13:8b).
How marvelous that Scripture teaches us that God “raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead” (Romans 3:24 b); He accepted that full payment of Christ’s sinless death for the reconciliation of “the world unto Himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them” (II Corinthians 5:19 a). Whoever believes in this perfect Redeemer, whoever receives this priceless Christ in true faith, shall “live” (John 11:25b), live spiritually and eternally. “He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life, and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abideth on him” (John 3:36).
Do you believe this?
PRAYER – I believe this, my dear Lord and Savior. Keep me a believer in Thy active and passive obedience for me and for all other sinners in the whole world, that obedience which has now, even from eternity, given me those priceless blessings of forgiveness for ALL of my sins and righteousness before Thee. I thank, praise, worship, and glorify Thee for these great blessings which have given me “peace with God” through Thy work in my behalf (Romans 5:1), O my precious, merciful Savior. Amen.