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John 11:1-45 - Sunday Scripture Reflection

Updated: Mar 27, 2023

On this Fifth Sunday in Lent we hear the amazing story of the raising of Lazarus from the dead. Jesus' close friend was gravely ill and Lazarus' family and friends had hoped Jesus would come quickly and cure him. However, Jesus delayed his arrival to Bethany and arrives too late to cure the man from his illness. In the midst of weeping and sorrow, Jesus asks the mourners to believe in the power of God, and to believe that power is present in the person of Jesus. We will reflect on what it means to believe in the saving grace of Jesus Christ, in our joys and in our sorrows.

Our Scripture passage is found in the Gospel according to John. You may find the Scripture lesson by selecting the following link: (John 11:1-45).

For continuing study, reflect on these questions (found in the study guide below):

  • Read the Scripture lesson assigned above and reflect on any words or phrases that might have caught your attention or had any special meaning for you. There is a lot going on in this lesson: consider the many people you encounter in this story and give some thought to their emotions or what they might be thinking about the day, or about how they experience God in the moment of Lazarus' death and resurrection.

  • Read the "WHAT..." paragraph in the guide below and reflect on the author's point of the "importance of the act of believing in the identity of Jesus and in his power to bring life out of death." How do you experience your belief in Jesus in your daily life, and how does that impact your life in tangible ways?

  • Read the "WHERE..." paragraph below and reflect on the author's comment that "Jesus' life-giving action is not dependent on human faith, but that action calls forth faith from those who believe in Jesus." The author also states this proves "the sheep recognize their shepherd's voice" do you recognize Jesus' voice in your life?

  • Read the "SO WHAT..." paragraph below, and reflect on the imagery presented by the author in the verse, "unbind him and let him go." How are we called to "unbind people who are bound by challenging aspects of their lives, and help them to live" a new life with the support of others?

  • Read the "NOW WHAT..." paragraph below and reflect on the Scripture verses that discuss Jesus' weeping at the scene of the death of his friend and the sorrow of those who loved Lazarus.

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