Reflection for 5th Sunday of Lent Year A (25th & 26th March 2023)
First reading: Ezekiel 37:12-14
Second reading: Romans 8:8-11
Gospel: John 11:1-45
This weekend missal reading theme is ‘Christ Breathes into Us His Living Spirit’
When God created the first human Adam, as found in Gen 2:7 says “Yahweh God shaped man from the soil of the ground and blew the breath of life into his nostrils, and man became a living being.”, man lived. The very breath of God gave us life. This breath is also the Spirit of God living in us. God has always wanted man to return back to him even though man has sinned. The 1st reading from Ezekiel spoke about God’s promises to His people and that one day they would return to Israel their home, with God putting His Spirit in them.
In the 2nd reading St Paul’s letter to the Romans reminded them to focus on being with the Spirit of God. Since we too been baptised, we belong to Christ. It is Christ who filled with His Spirit that gives us life. The reading mentioned three aspects of the Spirit is manifested of the God the Father (The Spirit of Him who raised Jesus), Christ (Spirit that gives life), and the Spirit of God (the paraclete) of the Trinity. It is quite sad, even after knowing that God’s Spirit is living inside us, many times we kept seeking for death which is opposite to life. We can be adamant to look for other gods or idols and not following the guidance of the Holy Spirit in our lives, especially when we want to achieve the standards of the world in terms of becoming wealthy, famous or to fulfil desires of the flesh. We are too caught up with these dreams or wants that can lead us to death. Christ had suffered while on earth, died on the cross in order that we may be redeemed of our sins and death so that we may again regain life in all it’s fullness.
The Gospel reading highlighted a very important message of Jesus proclamation that He is the resurrection and the life. If anyone believes in Him, even though he dies he will live and whoever lives and believes in Him will never die. Jesus did not just say the words but He displayed the power that was given by the Father to have Him the authorization to raise the dead back to life when he did the seemingly impossible by ordering Lazarus who was already dead for four days, to come out from the tomb alive. The resurrection of Lazarus and from death and back to life speaks a lot of Christ being the source of living Spirit and that He was sent by the God the Father to us, in order that we may life again in abundance. This redeeming work was completed when Jesus suffered and died on the cross and His resurrection brings salvation to all who believe in Him.
We also see in Jesus the examples of thanking His Heavenly Father, His faith and obedience towards the Father, as well as glorifying God in all that he does, even if they were of the Father’s will. Our prayer and invitation today that we too should follow Jesus’ example to keep holding on believing and steadfast to God with His Living Spirit by remaining faithful, keeping our body and soul pure and focus to the will of the Father, so that we too may one day enjoy the everlasting life He has promised us in His Kingdom. Amen.
Prepared by: Bro Fredie