Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Miriam, Martha and Eleazar of Bethany

Miriam (Mary), Martha, and Eleazar (Lazarus) of Bethany

Mary &  Martha of Bethany were sisters, who together with their brother Lazarus were good friends of Yeshuah.  Mary or Miriam would sit at Yeshua’s feet listening (rather controversial this as women were not disciples, and sitting at the feet of the Rabbi was a sign of discipleship) while Martha served.  Martha was somewhat disgruntled that Miriam left her the housework, but Yeshua tells her that Miriam has chosen the better part.  Martha also is the one who comes to Yeshua after the death of her brother, and expresses faith in the resurrection from the dead and Miriam expresses faith in Yeshua (If  you had been here my brother would not have died).  Miriam is also the one who pour expensive ointment over Yeshua’s feet to prepare him for his burial.  After Yeshua raises Lazarus from the dead, the family apparently continues on in Bethany until the persecution following Stephan’s death.  They fled Judah and ended up in Cyprus, where Lazarus became Bishop (appointed by Paul and Barnabus) of Kition (Lamaca) where Miriam and Martha continued helping him in his ministry until his death.  It is said that he almost never smiled after his resurrection, thinking about the unredeemed souls he saw in Hades while dead.  He would smile when he saw someone stealing a pot, when he would say with a smile, “the clay steals the clay.”  Legend also has it that he became Bishop of Marseilles, which is more unlikely.  Most probably, likes James in Spain, relics were transferred to Marseilles and became the root of legend. In passing too, some people think that Lazarus may have been the disciple Yeshua loved, and if so the author of the 4th Gospel. 

Romans 12:9-13
Luke 10:38-42
Psalm 36:5-10 or
Psalm 33:1-5,20-21
Blessed Father, you raised up Mary, Martha & Lazarus of Bethany to serve our Lord, each in their own way.  Grant that we may serve you directly and though others with the same love that Mary and Martha had, this we ask through our Lord and Saviour, Yeshuah, who lives and reigns with you and Ruach haKodesh, one God in Glory everlasting.  Amen.  (white)

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