Saturday, July 29, 2017

Martha of Bethany: Disciple and Believer

Poor Saint Martha. Everyone seems to remember her as the woman who was "busy about many things" and who complained to Jesus that her sister Mary wasn't helping with the dishes.

But we should also remember Martha as a beloved friend of Jesus (along with her siblings Mary and Lazarus) and one of his truly great disciples. In chapter 11 of John's Gospel, Jesus reveals himself to her as the One who conquers death and brings eternal life. In this text, we see Jesus invite her to believe in him. Her response shows clearly that she has come to know in a very deep way the "one thing necessary."

From the Gospel for the feast of St Martha:

Jesus said to Martha, "'I am the resurrection and the life; whoever believes in me, even if he dies, will live, and anyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?' She said to him, 'Yes, Lord. I have come to believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, the one who is coming into the world'" (John 11:25-27).

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