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Word of Life. April 2010. " I am the resurrection and the life “ (Jn 11,25). Jesus said these words after the death of Lazarus of Bethany, the Lazarus he raised to life four days after he’d died. Lazarus had two sisters, Martha and Mary. When Martha heard that Jesus was coming,

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April 2010


Jesus said these words after the death of Lazarus of Bethany, the Lazarus he raised to life four days after he’d died.


Lazarushad two sisters,

Martha and Mary.

When Martha heard that Jesuswas coming,

she immediately ran to meet him and said, ‘Lord,

if you had been here, my brother would not have died.’


‘Your brother will rise again,’

Jesus answered.

She replied,‘I know thathe will rise againin the resurrectionon the last day.’

Then Jesus declared:

‘I am the resurrectionand the life.Those who believe in me,even though they die, will live,

and everyone who livesand believes in me

will never die.’


Jesus wants to make clear who he is for human beings.

He possesses the most precious thing anyone could want:

Life, the Life that will never die.


If you’ve readJohn’s gospel,you’ll have foundthat Jesus also said:

‘Just as the Fatherhas life in himself,so he has granted the Son also to have lifein himself’.

And since Jesus has Life, he can give it to others.


Martha believed in the final resurrection:

‘I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day.’


But with hiswonderful affirmation,

‘I am the resurrection

and the life,’

Jesus tells her

that shedoes not haveto waitfor the future

to hopein the resurrection of the dead.


Right now, in the present moment, for all those who believe in him,

he is already that divine, ineffable, eternal Life that will never die.


If Jesus isin those who believe,

if he is in you,

you will not die.

This Life in the believer has the same natureas the risen Jesusand is, therefore,quite differentfrom the human condition in whichwe find ourselves.


And this extraordinary Life, which already exists in you,

will become fully manifest on the last day when,with your whole being, you will take partin the resurrection that is to come.


With these words Jesus is certainly not denying that physical death exists. But that does not imply the loss of

true Life.

Death will remain for you, as for everyone, a unique, intense, perhaps feared experience.

But it will no longer mean that existence is pointless, no longer be absurd, the failure of life, your final end. Death, for you, will no longer be really a death.


And when was this undying Life

born in you?

In your baptism.There, even though,as a human being

you were destined to die, you receivedimmortal Life

from Christ.

In your baptism,in fact, you receivedthe Holy Spiritwho is the Onewho raised Jesusfrom the dead.


The condition for receiving this sacrament was the faithyou professed, perhaps through your godparents.On the occasion of the rising of Lazarus,Jesus stated clearly to Martha: ‘Those who believe in me,

even though they die, will live … Do you believe this?’


‘Believing’, here,is somethingvery serious,very important.

It does not mean simply acceptingthe truths Jesushas proclaimed;

it means adheringto them with your

whole being.


To have this Life, therefore, you must say your ‘yes’ to Christ.And this means adherence to his words, to his commands: living them.Jesus reinforced this, ‘Whoever keeps my word will never see death’.And the teachings of Christ are summed up in love.So you cannot but be happy: in you there is Life!


In this period of preparation to celebrate Easter,let’s help one another make that decisive shift,which we have always to renew, towards the death of our ego,so that from now on Christ, the Risen One, may live in us.


"I am the resurrection and the life“ (Jn 11,25)

“Word of Life”, monthly publication of the Focolare Movement.

Original text by: Chiara Lubich, March 1999.Graphic design by Anna Lollo incollaboration with Fr. Placido D’Omina (Sicily - Italy) This commentary on the Word of Life is translated in 96 languages, and it reaches millions of people through the press, radio, TV and internet.For more information visit www.focolare.orgThis Powerpoint presentation is translated in various languages

and is published on