Readings for April 2, 2017 Year A Fifth Sunday in Lent

Please see How to Use Lection Connection

First Reading and Psalm

  • Ezekiel 37:1-14
  • Psalm 130

Second Reading

  • Romans 8:6-11

Gospel

  • John 11:1-45

Full lections can be read here.

Based on the Readings as Set

After the Jewish people were defeated and exiled to Babylon, YAHWEH shows a valley of scattered bones to the prophet Ezekiel and challenges him to believe that they could become living people again. As Ezekiel prophesies over the bones that is exactly what happens and YAHWEH explains how he is similarly going to put his Spirit into his people, bring them out of their grave of exile and restore them to the Promised Land. The Psalmist expresses his conviction that YAHWEH will indeed forgive his sins and, in spite of present troubles, he waits in hope for this to happen. He exhorts all Israel similarly to trust in YAHWEH’s steadfast love and promise of redemption. St. Paul sets before the Romans the two ways of life, one centred on what he calls “the flesh” and the other centred on the Holy Spirit. The former is opposed to God and because of sin is subject to death, while the latter embraces Christ and his righteousness, sharing in the resurrection life he imparts both now and in the age to come. Jesus delays going to heal his friend Lazarus because he knows that greater glory will come to God in the end and the faith of his own disciples and others will be established. Mary and Martha, Lazarus’ sisters, do not appreciate having to wait for Jesus because their brother dies in the meantime. But death does not have the final word. Not with Jesus.

As Introductions and/or for Bulletin Use

Old Testament

After the Jewish people were defeated and exiled to Babylon, YAHWEH shows a valley of scattered bones to the prophet Ezekiel and challenges him to believe that they could become living people again. As Ezekiel prophesies over the bones that is exactly what happens and YAHWEH explains how he is similarly going to put his Spirit into his people, bring them out of their grave of exile and restore them to the Promised Land.

Psalm

The Psalmist expresses his conviction that YAHWEH will indeed forgive his sins and, in spite of present troubles, he waits in hope for this to happen. He exhorts all Israel similarly to trust in YAHWEH’s steadfast love and promise of redemption.

New Testament

St. Paul sets before the Romans the two ways of life, one centred on what he calls “the flesh” and the other centred on the Holy Spirit. The former is opposed to God and because of sin is subject to death, while the latter embraces Christ and his righteousness, sharing in the resurrection life he imparts both now and in the age to come.

Gospel

Jesus delays going to heal his friend Lazarus because he knows that greater glory will come to God in the end and the faith of his own disciples and others will be established. Mary and Martha, Lazarus’ sisters, do not appreciate having to wait for Jesus because their brother dies in the meantime. But death does not have the final word. Not with Jesus.

 

 

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