13 th May 2012 Cell Questions – I am the Resurrection and the Life This is the fifth of our series on the ‘I Am’ sayings of Jesusin John’s Gospel. The passagethat we read on Sunday was part of the raising of Lazarus from the dead (just a sidenote his was not resurrection but rather raising from the dead – in other words he would die again). First century Jewish thought was divided between the dominant Greek idea that after people died they existed as ghostly shadesin Hades, a pretty rotten existence, or that of Resurrection, where the belief was that at the end of time the righteous would be resurrected to eternal life. The resurrection wasn’t just a ghostly spiritual life like that of the Greeks but rather it was a physical reality where the Fall was reversed and creation itself was restored and we would receive new bodies. Jesustakes the idea of Resurrection further. He not only takes the classic Jewish idea but He also points to something much greater which was that the power and life of Resurrection was found in Himself. His great claim that He is the “resurrection and the life” point to two related things. Firstly, that the resurrection will happen through Himself and this claim is vindicated by His own resurrection. The second is that resurrection life is Christ-shaped. By Jesusclaiming to be “the life” He is stating that not only that death no longer has the final word but he also examples how life is to be lived. He shows through grace and love and mercy and generosity etc the attributes that we are called to start exhibiting in our lives. And we start exhibiting these attributes through training to be Christlike, not that we are perfect but we train so that we are prepared for this new resurrection life that is to come. And this new resurrection life will be Christ-like in its living – a life that is characterised by love and grace and mercy and generosity etc
Read John 11:1-27 together 1. If you could raise one person from the dead, who would it be? Why? [Like Lazarus this is not a final resurrection!] 2. What do you hope resurrection life will be like? 3. If our resurrection life will be Christ-like in its living then how well do you think that you will enjoy that? What do you think that you would struggle most with? 4. If you really believed that resurrection was going to happen to you, then what difference would that make to your life? How would you live diffently?