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Jesus came to Mary and Martha with a promise that they could not yet understand. He told them that their brother, Lazarus, would live again. They thought he meant that Lazarus would be raised up in the end times, but Jesus meant that he would be raised from the dead that day. Jesus told the sisters that he was the resurrection and the life. This statement had a double meaning. The first was that Jesus had the power over the physical life and could raise people up. The other was that he also had power over the spiritual life, which we will look at today.

The teaching of the Old Testament was that if you had sinned you were cut off from God. If you were cut off from God then you were spiritually dead and would not inter heaven. Because no one could live without committing sin, God created a system of sacrifices for the forgiveness of sin. Having been forgiven for their sin they were made right before God and restored to life. Jesus is telling Mary and Martha that he is the one that brings people back to the fellowship with God and that he maintains that spiritual life.

For us to be spiritually resurrected two things must happen. The first is that we must be forgiven by God. God never forgave sin unless the person or nation first repented of the sins that they had committed. The second thing that had to happen was the sacrifice for sin. In the Old Testament God commanded that a Goat was to be killed for the forgiveness of sin, Leviticus 23. Hebrews 9: 22 tells us that without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sin. Jesus is telling Mary and Martha that he fulfills both of these requirements. First he has the power to forgive sin and second by dieing on the cross he becomes our sacrifice for sin.

The next point that Jesus makes is that he is the life. Our spiritual life can only be maintained if we live without sin. Jesus tells us that we can not live without sin by our own power, but that we must be filled with the Holy Spirit. This can happen when we allow the spirit of God into our lives, Rev. 3: 20. it is at this point we can add our voices with the followers of Christ and say that it is no longer I who live but it is Christ who lives in me, Galatians 2: 20.

As we learn to imitate Christ we will find that he is given more power over our lives and we will become stronger in him. As we give him more power over our lives sin will have less of a hold over us. The stronger becomes in us the more he is able to draw others to himself through us.

God bless you as you imitate him,

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