Mary Anoints Jesus’ Feet

Others will not care how much we know until they know how much we care. As one authority puts it: “If I just do my thing and you do yours, we stand in danger of losing each other and ourselves.... we are fully ourselves only in relation to each other. I do not find you by ch … More


Six days before Passover Jesus went back to Bethany, where he had raised Lazarus from the dead (v. 1). He had come to Bethany, the city of Martha, Lazarus and Mary and there He attended a dinner in Simon the Leper’s home (Mark 14:1-11) (v. 2). Martha, Lazarus and Mary were there. Martha served, Lazarus sat at the table with Jesus and Mary took a pint of very expensive ointment and anointed the feet of Jesus (v. 3). The perfume was a fragrant oil prepared from the roots and stems of an aromatic herb from northern India. It was an expensive perfume, imported in sealed alabaster boxes or flasks which were opened only on special occasions. Mary’s lavish gift (a pint) expressed her love and thanks to Jesus for Himself and for His restoring Lazarus to life. The house was filled with the fragrance.

A disciple named Judas Iscariot was there; He was the one who was going to betray Jesus (vv. 4-5). Here we see that Judas couldn’t understand. He thought the perfume, which was a year’s wages or perhaps a lifetime of savings, should have been sold and given to the poor. Judas did not really care about the poor (v. 6). He asked this because he was a thief and wanted money for himself secretly and selfishly. Mary was anointing Jesus for His burial and Jesus defended Mary’s act of love. Jesus told Judas to “Leave her alone! He said she has kept this perfume for the day of His burial (v. 7). He went on to say, “you will always have the poor with you, but you won’t always have me (v.8). However, the opportunity to show love to me on earth is limited. He said, “But me ye have not always.” People came to see Jesus and Lazarus because Lazarus had been restored and many Jews believed in Jesus (v. 9). Now the chief priests planned to kill two men, Jesus and Lazarus (vv. 10-11)!


Have you noticed that when God’s work is being multiplied then the enemy tries every way to stop it? I need to be as concerned about showing my love for Jesus as Mary did.

John 12:1-11 (English Standard Version)

Six days before the Passover, Jesus therefore came to Bethany, where Lazarus was, whom Jesus had raised from the dead. So they gave a dinner for him there. Martha served, and Lazarus was one of those reclining with him at table. Mary therefore took a pound of expensive ointment made from pure nard, and anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped his feet with her hair. The house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume. But Judas Iscariot, one of his disciples (he who was about to betray him), said, "Why was this ointment not sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor?" He said this, not because he cared about the poor, but because he was a thief, and having charge of the moneybag he used to help himself to what was put into it. Jesus said, "Leave her alone, so that she may keep it for the day of my burial. For the poor you always have with you, but you do not always have me." When the large crowd of the Jews learned that Jesus was there, they came, not only on account of him but also to see Lazarus, whom he had raised from the dead. So the chief priests made plans to put Lazarus to death as well, because on account of him many of the Jews were going away and believing in Jesus.

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