Lazarus: context

The gospel reading for 5th Sunday in Lent, Lectionary Cycle A, is the account of the raising of Lazarus from the dead (John 11:1-45). The account follows the story of the healing of the man born blind (John 9:1-41). In the commentary on that gospel it was explained that the miracles (called “signs” / semeia) in the gospel according to John point beyond themselves to the divine – not just the divine as a vague power, but to a person. They identify Jesus as the light and life of the world, the bread of life from heaven, and the Logos who, through the semeia/signs, reveals his own glory, which is also the glory of God his Father, since he and the Father are one and since he does the Father’s will and works.  These signs are given that we might believe (Jn 20:26).  For John, sin is the failure to believe and accept the consequential changes in one’s life.  All the characters of John 9 (on-lookers, neighbors, parents, the Pharisees and other religious leaders) are judged in their failure to acknowledge Jesus as Lord and Savior and to subsequently become witnesses to Jesus as the glory of God. Continue reading