5th Sunday of Lent Year B - 21/3/2021 - Gospel: Jn 11: 1-45
Life and Death
In the natural world, life and death are the two realities, and they sustain each other. The death of something means life for others, and living is on the expense of others' death. Such as, animals consume grass and their waste becomes nutrition for grass and weeds. Dead branches become homes for insects, and mulch for trees and vegetables. Fish and poultry consume grass, and weeds for their survival, while we enjoy sea food and poultry.

Jesus used two familiar images: 'the hour and a wheat grain' to talk about His own death, and His resurrection, that gave a new life for those who welcome Him in their lives. The image of 'The Hour' applied to Jesus alone, and the image of 'a wheat grain' had its universal implication, which applied to each individual. When Jesus' disciples told Him about the Gentiles who would like to meet Him, Jesus knew that it was a hint for something big to happen, and also His 'Hour' was coming. He told them: 'Now the hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. I tell you, most solemnly, unless a wheat grain falls on the ground and dies,  it remains only a single grain; but if it dies, it yields a rich harvest' John 12,23-24.

The death of a wheat grain indicates that without sacrifice, there is no new life. Jesus' physical death was necessity to bring new life for the human race. The new life was rich, and abundant. A wheat grain that died to 'yield a rich harvest' implied what Jesus lost was our gain. The death of one person gives life for all people. Jesus alone was to lose His life, so that we would have abundant life in Him. Life here means eternal life, which Jesus alone has to offer. 

The word 'The Hour' has several interpretations. First, it was 'The Hour' for Jesus to give glory to God the Father. Second, it was 'The Hour' Jesus felt His soul was in troubled, and yet He went ahead to carry out His Father's will. Third, it was 'The Hour' for the world to hear God's voice from heaven for the last time. Fourth, it was 'The Hour' for the expansion of the Good News to the rest of the world. Fifth, 'The Hour' indicated the time Jesus was going to confront evil of the world, and His love for us was plainly displayed on the cross. Jesus' death and resurrection were available for people to make choices to follow or to reject Him. Those who chose to be Jesus' disciples have found a new life in Him; those who chose to follow the way of the world continued to search for a new life in the world's materials.

Jesus has died and resurrected once and for all. There is no need for us to die anymore. Jesus has gained a new life for those who follow His way. Having a new life in Christ requires us to conform our lives to Jesus' way of life. Accepting Jesus as our Lord, and worshipping Him alone is a way to give glory to God. We are able give glory to God, because we join our voice with Jesus to praise God. Those who join Jesus would be with Him as He once said: 'Wherever I am, my servant will be there too. If anyone serves me, my Father will honour him. v 26'.

We enjoy God's gift of love; we need to share that joyous gift with others.