Sunday, April 2, 2017

Lent 5 outline & questions

Lent 5
2 April 2017
John 11:17-27,38-54
Christ raises Lazarus from death

Almighty God, by Your great goodness mercifully look upon Your people that we may be governed and preserved evermore in body and soul; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

Jesus raises Lazarus from the dead. The raising of Lazarus sets the stage for Jesus’ entering Jerusalem for His passion and marks the conclusion of His public ministry. The raising of Lazarus was the last straw that caused the religious authorities to act. They had to do something quickly to rid society of the menace of Jesus…Yet to you Martha is saying, “The teacher is here, and is calling for you.”

Outline: Your response to Martha’s message —

1. Who is calling? None other than Jesus!
2. Whom does He want? None other than you!
3. Why is He calling me? To comfort you. To share your sorrow. To express His love.

Points to ponder this week…

The ruling priests and Pharisees resented Jesus and the good He was doing. “The chief priests and the Pharisees called a meeting of the Sanhedrin. What are we accomplishing? They asked. Here is this man performing many miraculous signs. If we let Him go on like this everyone will believe in him and then the Romans will come and take away both our place and our nation.” (Vv. 47-48)  Was their fear rational? Recall times when you might have been tempted to respond out of fear. How were these fears relieved?

As the hymn puts it, “Beloved, it is well!” As people of God we can live in the confidence that “all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to His purpose.” (Romans 8)  Where do you find your confidence? Even in the midst of death? Even in spite of what life throws at you?

Schnorr von Carolsfeld woodcuts © WELS for private and congregational use

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