Saturday Morning: 09 Feb 2019 – John 11:28-44 ~ Jesus wept.

Saturday Morning

+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen

Opening (Collect for Purity)

Almighty God: to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hid; cleanse the thoughts of my heart through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, that I may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy name, through Christ my Lord. Amen.
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Morning Reading – John 11:28-44 (NLT)

Then she returned to Mary. She called Mary aside from the mourners and told her, “The Teacher is here and wants to see you.” So Mary immediately went to him.

Jesus had stayed outside the village, at the place where Martha met him. When the people who were at the house consoling Mary saw her leave so hastily, they assumed she was going to Lazarus’s grave to weep. So they followed her there. When Mary arrived and saw Jesus, she fell at his feet and said, “Lord, if only you had been here, my brother would not have died.”

When Jesus saw her weeping and saw the other people wailing with her, a deep anger welled up within him, and he was deeply troubled. “Where have you put him?” he asked them.

They told him, “Lord, come and see.” Then Jesus wept. The people who were standing nearby said, “See how much he loved him!” But some said, “This man healed a blind man. Couldn’t he have kept Lazarus from dying?”

Jesus was still angry as he arrived at the tomb, a cave with a stone rolled across its entrance. “Roll the stone aside,” Jesus told them.

But Martha, the dead man’s sister, protested, “Lord, he has been dead for four days. The smell will be terrible.”

Jesus responded, “Didn’t I tell you that you would see God’s glory if you believe?” So they rolled the stone aside. Then Jesus looked up to heaven and said, “Father, thank you for hearing me. You always hear me, but I said it out loud for the sake of all these people standing here, so that they will believe you sent me.” Then Jesus shouted, “Lazarus, come out!” And the dead man came out, his hands and feet bound in graveclothes, his face wrapped in a headcloth. Jesus told them, “Unwrap him and let him go!”
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Morning Reflection:

What moves Jesus to tears?

In today’s reading, Jesus displays a range of human emotions that move him to tears. Mary comes out to greet him accompanied by friends weeping and wailing over the death of Lazarus.

“If only you had been here….” she laments. (vs 32)

And how did Jesus respond?

When Jesus saw her weeping and saw the other people wailing with her,
a deep anger welled up within him (he was angry in his spirit),
and he was deeply troubled. (vs 33)

Then Jesus wept. (vs 35)

We don’t know exactly why Jesus wept, but we do have some clues –

+ Love for his friends Mary, Martha, and Lazarus – Jesus, the Man of Sorrows, understood and fully entered into their pain and suffering.

+ Dismay over their unbelief – Jesus, the Son of God, sent by God to bring eternal life to those who live and believe in him.

+ Anger over the scourge of sin and death – Jesus, the Lamb of God, who would defeat sin and death once and for all on the cross.

Perhaps you can think of some other reasons that Jesus was moved to tears. But one thing is certain – Jesus freely joins us in our deepest pain and suffering to bring help, and healing, and hope; and to display the glory of God.

Questions for consideration:

  • Can you remember a time when you thought “if only Jesus had been here…?” Please explain.
  • Can you remember a time when you knew that Jesus was there with you in your pain and suffering? Please explain.
  • What is the most difficult (seemingly impossible) circumstance you are currently facing? Can you trust Jesus to use it for your good and God’s glory? What do you think that might look like? Please explain.

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Morning Prayer:

Lord Jesus: Surround us with your Loving-kindness, and fill us with your Spirit that we might understand who you are and hold on to your promises, especially in our times of pain and suffering. Thank you for your great love for us. Thank you for holding on to us forever. Thank you for your gift of eternal life. Increase our faith that we might trust you in every circumstance and recognize the display of your glory. For your name’s sake we ask it. Amen.
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“In God We Trust” – Hillsong Worship

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Closing:

May the peace of the Lord Christ go with you, wherever He may send you. May He guide you through the wilderness, and protect you through the storm. May He bring you home rejoicing at the wonders He has shown you. May He bring you home rejoicing once again into our doors.

+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen

Fifth Sunday of Lent: 02 April – John 11:3-7; 17; 20-27; 33b-45 ~ “Lazarus, come out!”

Fifth Sunday of Lent: 02 April 2017

+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Opening:

Enlighten, O God of compassion, the hearts of your children, and in your kindness grant those you stir to faith and devotion a gracious hearing when they cry out to you. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
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Reading: John 11:3-7, 17, 20-27, 33b-45 (NLT)

The Raising of Lazarus

So the two sisters sent a message to Jesus telling him, “Lord, your dear friend is very sick.”

But when Jesus heard about it he said, “Lazarus’s sickness will not end in death. No, it happened for the glory of God so that the Son of God will receive glory from this.” So although Jesus loved Martha, Mary, and Lazarus, he stayed where he was for the next two days. Finally, he said to his disciples, “Let’s go back to Judea.”
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When Jesus arrived at Bethany, he was told that Lazarus had already been in his grave for four days.
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When Martha got word that Jesus was coming, she went to meet him. But Mary stayed in the house. Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if only you had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that God will give you whatever you ask.”

Jesus told her, “Your brother will rise again.”

“Yes,” Martha said, “he will rise when everyone else rises, at the last day.”

Jesus told her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Anyone who believes in me will live, even after dying. Everyone who lives in me and believes in me will never ever die. Do you believe this, Martha?”

“Yes, Lord,” she told him. “I have always believed you are the Messiah, the Son of God, the one who has come into the world from God.”
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When Jesus saw her weeping and saw the other people wailing with her, a deep anger welled up within him, and he was deeply troubled. “Where have you put him?” he asked them.

They told him, “Lord, come and see.” Then Jesus wept. The people who were standing nearby said, “See how much he loved him!” But some said, “This man healed a blind man. Couldn’t he have kept Lazarus from dying?”

Jesus was still angry as he arrived at the tomb, a cave with a stone rolled across its entrance. “Roll the stone aside,” Jesus told them.

But Martha, the dead man’s sister, protested, “Lord, he has been dead for four days. The smell will be terrible.”

Jesus responded, “Didn’t I tell you that you would see God’s glory if you believe?” So they rolled the stone aside. Then Jesus looked up to heaven and said, “Father, thank you for hearing me. You always hear me, but I said it out loud for the sake of all these people standing here, so that they will believe you sent me.” Then Jesus shouted, “Lazarus, come out!” And the dead man came out, his hands and feet bound in graveclothes, his face wrapped in a headcloth. Jesus told them, “Unwrap him and let him go!”

Many of the people who were with Mary believed in Jesus when they saw this happen.
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Prayer:

Heavenly Father: In your Son, Jesus, you gave life abundant and eternal to all who believe in his name.

+ Remind us again that nothing is impossible for you, even raising the dead to life.
+ Remind us again of your compassion and love for us, especially in times of sorrow and grief.
+ Fill us with confident faith in your Son, Jesus, our resurrection and our life.
+ Draw us close to you during this season of repentance and reflection.

Heavenly Father, hear our prayers, and fill our hearts with your mercy, so that safeguarding the gifts received through your goodness, we may walk in newness of life. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
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“I Am the Resurrection” – Diocese of St. Benedict – Old Catholic Missionaries


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Closing:

See, my servant will prosper; he will be highly exalted.

But many were amazed when they saw him. His face was so disfigured he seemed hardly human, and from his appearance, one would scarcely know he was a man.

And he will startle many nations. Kings will stand speechless in his presence.

For they will see what they had not been told; they will understand what they had not heard about.

– Isaiah 52:13-15 (NLT)

+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
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Format adapted from Lectio Divina: USCCB Lenten Resources, 2017

Daily Reading: 24 June – The Miracles of Jesus: Raising Lazarus from the Dead – John 11:1-57

Friday of the Twelfth Week in Ordinary Time

+ In the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen!

E100:13.e – The Miracles of Jesus

Raising Lazarus from the Dead – John 11:1-57 (NLT)

The Raising of Lazarus

John 11  A man named Lazarus was sick. He lived in Bethany with his sisters, Mary and Martha. 2 This is the Mary who later poured the expensive perfume on the Lord’s feet and wiped them with her hair. Her brother, Lazarus, was sick. 3 So the two sisters sent a message to Jesus telling him, “Lord, your dear friend is very sick.”

St Elizabeth of Hungary caring for the sick and dying
St Elizabeth of Hungary
caring for the sick and dying

4 But when Jesus heard about it he said, “Lazarus’s sickness will not end in death. No, it happened for the glory of God so that the Son of God will receive glory from this.” 5 So although Jesus loved Martha, Mary, and Lazarus, 6 he stayed where he was for the next two days. 7 Finally, he said to his disciples, “Let’s go back to Judea.”

8 But his disciples objected. “Rabbi,” they said, “only a few days ago the people in Judea were trying to stone you. Are you going there again?”

9 Jesus replied, “There are twelve hours of daylight every day. During the day people can walk safely. They can see because they have the light of this world. 10 But at night there is danger of stumbling because they have no light.” 11 Then he said, “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep, but now I will go and wake him up.”

12 The disciples said, “Lord, if he is sleeping, he will soon get better!” 13 They thought Jesus meant Lazarus was simply sleeping, but Jesus meant Lazarus had died.

14 So he told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead. 15 And for your sakes, I’m glad I wasn’t there, for now you will really believe. Come, let’s go see him.”

16 Thomas, nicknamed the Twin, said to his fellow disciples, “Let’s go, too—and die with Jesus.”

17 When Jesus arrived at Bethany, he was told that Lazarus had already been in his grave for four days. 18 Bethany was only a few miles down the road from Jerusalem, 19 and many of the people had come to console Martha and Mary in their loss. 20 When Martha got word that Jesus was coming, she went to meet him. But Mary stayed in the house. 21 Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if only you had been here, my brother would not have died. 22 But even now I know that God will give you whatever you ask.”

23 Jesus told her, “Your brother will rise again.”

resurrection_and_the_life

24 “Yes,” Martha said, “he will rise when everyone else rises, at the last day.”

25 Jesus told her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Anyone who believes in me will live, even after dying. 26 Everyone who lives in me and believes in me will never ever die. Do you believe this, Martha?”

27 “Yes, Lord,” she told him. “I have always believed you are the Messiah, the Son of God, the one who has come into the world from God.” 28 Then she returned to Mary. She called Mary aside from the mourners and told her, “The Teacher is here and wants to see you.” 29 So Mary immediately went to him.

30 Jesus had stayed outside the village, at the place where Martha met him. 31 When the people who were at the house consoling Mary saw her leave so hastily, they assumed she was going to Lazarus’s grave to weep. So they followed her there. 32 When Mary arrived and saw Jesus, she fell at his feet and said, “Lord, if only you had been here, my brother would not have died.”

33 When Jesus saw her weeping and saw the other people wailing with her, a deep anger welled up within him, and he was deeply troubled. 34 “Where have you put him?” he asked them.

They told him, “Lord, come and see.” 35 Then Jesus wept. 36 The people who were standing nearby said, “See how much he loved him!” 37 But some said, “This man healed a blind man. Couldn’t he have kept Lazarus from dying?”

38 Jesus was still angry as he arrived at the tomb, a cave with a stone rolled across its entrance. 39 “Roll the stone aside,” Jesus told them.

But Martha, the dead man’s sister, protested, “Lord, he has been dead for four days. The smell will be terrible.”

Raising of Lazarus Vincent Van Gogh Saint-Rémy: May, 1890 Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam
Raising of Lazarus
Vincent Van Gogh
Saint-Rémy: May, 1890
Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam

40 Jesus responded, “Didn’t I tell you that you would see God’s glory if you believe?” 41 So they rolled the stone aside. Then Jesus looked up to heaven and said, “Father, thank you for hearing me. 42 You always hear me, but I said it out loud for the sake of all these people standing here, so that they will believe you sent me.” 43 Then Jesus shouted, “Lazarus, come out!” 44 And the dead man came out, his hands and feet bound in graveclothes, his face wrapped in a headcloth. Jesus told them, “Unwrap him and let him go!”

The Plot to Kill Jesus

45 Many of the people who were with Mary believed in Jesus when they saw this happen. 46 But some went to the Pharisees and told them what Jesus had done. 47 Then the leading priests and Pharisees called the high council together. “What are we going to do?” they asked each other. “This man certainly performs many miraculous signs. 48 If we allow him to go on like this, soon everyone will believe in him. Then the Roman army will come and destroy both our Temple and our nation.”

49 Caiaphas, who was high priest at that time, said, “You don’t know what you’re talking about! 50 You don’t realize that it’s better for you that one man should die for the people than for the whole nation to be destroyed.”

51 He did not say this on his own; as high priest at that time he was led to prophesy that Jesus would die for the entire nation. 52 And not only for that nation, but to bring together and unite all the children of God scattered around the world.

53 So from that time on, the Jewish leaders began to plot Jesus’ death. 54 As a result, Jesus stopped his public ministry among the people and left Jerusalem. He went to a place near the wilderness, to the village of Ephraim, and stayed there with his disciples.

55 It was now almost time for the Jewish Passover celebration, and many people from all over the country arrived in Jerusalem several days early so they could go through the purification ceremony before Passover began. 56 They kept looking for Jesus, but as they stood around in the Temple, they said to each other, “What do you think? He won’t come for Passover, will he?” 57 Meanwhile, the leading priests and Pharisees had publicly ordered that anyone seeing Jesus must report it immediately so they could arrest him.

“I Am the Resurrection” – John Michael Talbot

Prayer for Eternal Life

“Dear God, I need you and want to know you. As best as I know how I give my life to you. I believe Jesus died for me. Arose from the grave, ascended into heaven and He hears me now. Jesus I want to follow you, I repent and turn from my sins as you give me a new heart. Fill me with the Holy Spirit, help me to love everyone, I forgive everybody. Lord Jesus show me your way, I truly want to follow you. Make my home in heaven. I am not ashamed of Jesus – In Jesus name I pray!”

Closing Sentence

For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.
– John 3:16-17

+ In the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen!

Morning Prayer: Psalm 119:136; Isaiah 5:1-4; Luke 13:34; 19:41 ~ weeping with God

Morning Prayer: 

+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen

Opening sentence

One thing I have asked of the Lord, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life; to behold the beauty of the Lord and to seek Him in His temple.

You will find the Lord your God, if you search after him with all your heart and with all your soul.

Morning readings

Psalm 119:136 NLT:

Rivers of tears gush from my eyes because people disobey your instructions.

Jesus wept 1

Isaiah 5:1-4 NLT:

Now I will sing for the one I love a song about his vineyard:

My beloved had a vineyard on a rich and fertile hill. He plowed the land, cleared its stones, and planted it with the best vines. In the middle he built a watchtower and carved a winepress in the nearby rocks. Then he waited for a harvest of sweet grapes, but the grapes that grew were bitter.

Now, you people of Jerusalem and Judah, you judge between me and my vineyard. What more could I have done for my vineyard that I have not already done? When I expected sweet grapes, why did my vineyard give me bitter grapes?

Luke 13:34; 19:41 NLT:

“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones God’s messengers! How often I have wanted to gather your children together as a hen protects her chicks beneath her wings, but you wouldn’t let me….”

But as he came closer to Jerusalem and saw the city ahead, he began to weep.

Reflection/Prayer:

Centuries ago, Demonax the Cynic said this:

Probably all laws are useless;
for good men do not need laws at all
and bad men are made no better by them.

We can see he has a point – up to a point! But the writer of the psalms says, ‘Streams of tears flow from my eyes because Your law is not obeyed.’ For this to be our response we need to have compassion for those who do not take heed of God’s law. For this to be our response we need to be touched with the sorrow of God’s heart, and long to comfort Him. For this to be our response we need to believe that the law of God is good, and just, and given to care for and tend the people He loves.

Does it move us to tears that the law of God is abandoned, ignored, or even scorned? Does it move us to action when we realize that most people have little concept of what the laws of God are? Is our heart under Kingdom rule? or do we have divided loyalties, as if we were citizens of two kingdoms, obeying whichever rule of conduct happens to suit us at the time?

‘What more could I have done for you than I have done?’ says the Lord, ‘for I loved you!’

And Jesus wept.

Canticle

Christ, as a light… illumine and guide me. Christ, as a shield… overshadow me. Christ under me; Christ over me; Christ beside me on my left and my right.

This day be within and without me, lowly and meek, yet all-powerful. Be in the heart of each to whom I speak; in the mouth of each who speaks unto me. This day be within and without me, lowly and meek, yet all-powerful.

Christ as a light; Christ as a shield; Christ beside me on my left and my right.

Blessing

May the peace of the Lord Christ go with you, wherever He may send you. May He guide you through the wilderness, protect you through the storm. May He bring you home rejoicing at the wonders He has shown you. May He bring you home rejoicing once again into our doors.

+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen
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Peanut Gallery: The Morning Prayer readings are from the Daily Office of the Northumbrian Community as available online here… and in the book form, Celtic Daily Prayer available on Amazon.com.

The website and prayer book are rich in prayer resources and I commend them to you. For our purpose here, I will limit my selections to the Morning Prayer resources.

Morning Reading: Isaiah 40.1-2 NLT

jesus weptIsaiah 40.1-2 NLT

“Comfort, comfort my people,” says your God.

“Speak tenderly to Jerusalem. Tell her that her sad days are gone and her sins are pardoned. Yes, the Lord has punished her twice over for all her sins.”