Lazarus Laughed!

If there is one of you who has not sinned, let him be the first to throw a stone at her

John 8:7
Isaiah 43:16-21; Psalms 126:1-6; Philippians 3:8-14; John 8:1-11

Sermon Week/Year

Fifth Sunday of Lent, C

Many years ago, a Eugene O’Neil play called “Lazarus Laughed” was produced on the Broadway stage. The play was based on the New Testament episode in which a friend of Jesus named Lazarus dies and his body is placed in the burial tomb. Four days later, Jesus raises Lazarus from the dead. Now, because in the death experience Lazarus has learned to appreciate the greatness of life, he sees things in a whole new perspective. He is able to look upon the affairs of mankind with a cosmic insight. And it is all so funny that he cannot help but laugh. He cannot contain himself from laughter over the way people worry and struggle and relate to one another. “Why are your eyes always watching one another with suspicion?” he asks.

The play reminds us that we all are destined to share in Lazarus’ experience of death, seeing the affairs of mankind in a whole new perspective — looking back on our own earthbound activities…

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