Buscamos inspiração na pessoa de Jesus para fazermos a nossa jardinagem do espírito. Ele foi o jardineiro por excelência. Soube cultivar as sementes da fé para produzirem plantas que fornecem abrigo e sustento. Este blog é um esforço para fazer a nossa jardinagem das passagens bíblicas à luz de Jesus que é digno de servir como nosso modelo.
Convidamos os leitores a aprenderem com ELE e fazerem a sua própria jardinagem.
sexta-feira, 20 de fevereiro de 2015
LIFE IN DEATH
“Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep;
but I am going there to wake him up.”
John 11:11 (read 11:1-45) NIV
Death is a major concern of human beings - the biggest
challenge and deepest mystery. Nature shows that it is inevitable and
irreversible and is always followed by chaos and decay. We resist this fatality
in our existence. We cannot beat it physically, so we appeal to faith. By faith
Christians affirm the resurrection.
The story of Lazarus does not provide a definitive
answer before the mystery and the certainty of death. His resurrection was
temporary, only delaying his final death. The healings and miracles of Jesus only
postponed physical death. They were not a release from it. No doubt Lazarus
died again and is buried until this day.
This episode described in John's Gospel is about the
power of life. Its value lies in the claim that death does not eliminate life.
Even with death, life goes on. The dimensions of life and death are far beyond
our understanding. Life and death are governed by a higher power. The same power
that created life also created death. Both are the order of existence.
Death need not be feared, because it is only the dark
side of life. Victory over death is not its elimination but the realization
that it, too, is subject to a higher power. Jesus is presented as the Lord of
everything, including death.
Without this vision we see death as a tragic evil, and
life as a struggle against death. Death is seen as an enemy to be resisted as
long as we have the strength to do so.
Jesus injected another factor into the polarity
between life and death, love. Love is above life and death. Through love, Jesus
gave himself to death, demonstrating that death can be part of life. Our fear
of death may lead us to a selfish life style of self-defense and self-promotion.
It can make us value our own life above the life of others.
Fear casts out love. This is the opposite of the
biblical passage: 1 John 4:18 which says "There is
no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear….The one who fears is not
made perfect in love." Our fear of death takes away our
ability to love. Love can be "dangerous" in that it has no fear in
facing death situations. Real love requires courage, because it can lead us to
expose ourselves to death.
We live in a culture that denies death. This denial of
death leads us to a frantic search to preserve our own life and distances us
from love. It opens the door to injustice, corruption and violence. Each one
defends his or her “piece-of-cake” while ignoring the collective well-being.
Even religion becomes the search for personal salvation and individual
prosperity. The irony is that this denial promotes chaos and moral degeneration
which promotes the death which it strives to avoid. A selfish pursuit of life
promotes premature death and is not redemptive.
The story of Jesus' resurrection is a statement that
death does not eliminate life and that love includes both. Death is part of
life and life includes death.
John 11:1-45 – New International Version (NIV)
DEATH OF LAZARUS
Now a man named Lazarus was sick.
He was from Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. (This Mary,
whose brother Lazarus now lay sick, was the same one who poured perfume on the
Lord and wiped his feet with her hair.) So the sisters sent word to Jesus,
“Lord, the one you love is sick.”
When he heard this, Jesus said,
“This sickness will not end in death. No, it is for God’s glory so that God’s
Son may be glorified through it.” Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and
Lazarus. So when he heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed where he was two
more days, and then he said to his disciples, “Let us go back to Judea.”
“But Rabbi,” they said, “a short
while ago the Jews there tried to stone you, and yet you are going back?”
Jesus answered, “Are there not
twelve hours of daylight? Anyone who walks in the daytime will not stumble, for
they see by this world’s light. It is when a person walks at night that they
stumble, for they have no light.”
After he had said this, he went
on to tell them, “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep; but I am going there to
wake him up.”
His disciples replied, “Lord, if
he sleeps, he will get better.” Jesus had been speaking of his death, but his
disciples thought he meant natural sleep.
So then he told them plainly,
“Lazarus is dead, and for your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may
believe. But let us go to him.”
Then Thomas (also known as
Didymus said to the rest of the disciples, “Let us also go, that we may die
Jesus Comforts the Sisters of
On his arrival, Jesus found that
Lazarus had already been in the tomb for four days. Now Bethany was less than
two miles from Jerusalem, and many Jews had come to Martha and Mary to comfort
them in the loss of their brother. When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she
went out to meet him, but Mary stayed at home.
“Lord,” Martha said to Jesus, “if
you had been here, my brother would not have died. But I know that even now God
will give you whatever you ask.”
Jesus said to her, “Your brother
will rise again.”
Martha answered, “I know he will
rise again in the resurrection at the last day.”
Jesus said to her, “I am the
resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though
they die; and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe
“Yes, Lord,” she replied, “I
believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, who is to come into the
After she had said this, she went
back and called her sister Mary aside. “The Teacher is here,” she said, “and is
asking for you.” When Mary heard this, she got up quickly and went to him. Now
Jesus had not yet entered the village, but was still at the place where Martha
had met him. When the Jews who had been with Mary in the house, comforting her,
noticed how quickly she got up and went out, they followed her, supposing she
was going to the tomb to mourn there.
When Mary reached the place where
Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet and said, “Lord, if you had been here,
my brother would not have died.”
When Jesus saw her weeping, and
the Jews who had come along with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in
spirit and troubled. “Where have you laid him?” he asked.
“Come and see, Lord,” they
Then the Jews said, “See how he
But some of them said, “Could not
he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from dying?”
Jesus Raises Lazarus From the
Jesus, once more deeply moved,
came to the tomb. It was a cave with a stone laid across the entrance. “Take
away the stone,” he said.
“But, Lord,” said Martha, the
sister of the dead man, “by this time there is a bad odor, for he has been
there four days.”
Then Jesus said, “Did I not tell
you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?”
So they took away the stone. Then
Jesus looked up and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. I knew
that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing
here, that they may believe that you sent me.”
When he had said this, Jesus
called in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” The dead man came out, his hands
and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face.
Jesus said to them, “Take off the
grave clothes and let him go.”
THE PLOT TO KILL JESUS
Therefore many of the Jews who
had come to visit Mary, and had seen what Jesus did, believed in him.