How Many Times Was Jesus Anointed?
It is not uncommon for us to hear about allegedBiblecontradictions and then carefully investigate the sections in issue to discover that they are not, in fact, contradictions at all. One such alleged inconsistency is that the Gospel narratives appear to show that Jesus was anointed both before and after his triumphal entry into Jerusalem. While this would be problematic if the Gospels were simply recounting one particular incident in history, that does not appear to be the case in this case. Throughout this essay, we’ll look at the four gospel stories from Matthew to John to argue that Jesus was not anointed for burial on a single occasion, but rather on two or possibly three consecutive times by a woman, with the first one not being done as a commemoration for Jesus’ burial.
The First Anointing
It is not uncommon for us to hear about allegedBiblecontradictions and then carefully investigate the sections in issue to discover that they are not, in fact, contradictions. In one instance of alleged inconsistency, the Gospels appear to state that Jesus was anointed both before and after the Triumphal Entry. Although this would be problematic if the Gospels were simply recounting one particular incident in history, that does not appear to be the case in this case. Throughout this essay, we’ll look at the four gospel stories from Matthew to John to argue that Jesus was not anointed for burial on a single occasion, but rather on two or possibly three consecutive times by a woman, with the first one not being done as a remembrance of Jesus’ burial.
- This incident took place in the home of Simon the Pharisee, who resided somewhere in Galilee, most likely in Capernaum, Nain, or Cana, at the time. It indicates that Jesus had just returned from Nain, where he had cured a widow’s son (Luke 7:11–16), and that he was now in Capernaum. Then, probably immediately after that, John the Baptist’s disciples came to him (Luke 7:19–23
- See also Matthew 11:1–6), and following that, Jesus gave a brief talk regarding John the Baptist (Luke 7:24–35
- See also Matthew 11:7–19
- See also Matthew 11:1–6). Moreover, according to the Gospel of Matthew, he specifically chastised Capernaum last (Matthew 11:23–30), and it appears that at this time Simon the Pharisee invited Jesus and his disciples to come for dinner
- Because John the Baptist was still alive at the time, this event appears to have occurred at least two years before the Crucifixion. John’s death is recounted in Matthew 14:10, Mark 6:27, and Luke 9:9, all of which occur somewhere within the first year of Jesus’ estimated three-year mission. According to the Bible, the Lord’s earthly ministry did not endure for a specific amount of time. It is commonly believed that Jesus’ ministry lasted three years because of the number of Passovers described in John’s Gospel
- However, his ministry could have been shorter or longer than three years
- The woman is referred to as a sinner, which could be a euphemism for a prostitute, and she is also unnamed
- She appears to have approached Jesus from behind, knelt down, broke open the flask, and began to weep
- Afterward, she cleaned Christ’s feet with her hair, crying as she did so, and then anointed Christ’s feet with fragrant oil (there is no mention of anointing Christ’s head)
- At this anointing, none of the disciples expressed concern about the expense of the ointment, but Simon the Pharisee expressed displeasure that Jesus would allow a renowned sinner to get close to him. During his discourse with this woman, Jesus acknowledged and pardoned her faults
The Second Anointing—Just Before the Triumphal Entry
The story in John 12:1–8 is the next one in the sequence of events. It differs significantly from Luke’s narrative, and while it is extremely close to Matthew’s and Mark’s accounts in many ways, it differs in a few important ways. Let’s go over the specifics of what was said in this passage:
- In Bethany, this event is believed to have taken place in the home of Lazarus, Mary, and Martha
- It took place six days before Passover (and a few days before the Triumphal Entry), and it corresponds to the timeline of the Matthew and Mark accounts, which are believed to have taken place four days later in the same city. The woman who anointed Jesus’ feet was Mary, the sister of Lazarus and Martha
- Mary anointed and then wiped Jesus’ feet with her hair, but there is no mention of her crying, either before or during the time she is anointing Jesus’ feet with the spikenard oil
- And Mary anointed and then wiped Jesus’ feet with her hair
- It appears that Judas was the only one who was furious with Mary for what he saw to be a waste of money, and that was only because he was a thief in disguise. The other disciples, apparently out of respect for Mary (and Martha and Lazarus, whom they all knew), did not dare to speak out and admonish Mary, but they did so four days later to an unknown lady, according to the Bible. For example, it is possible that Judas moaned about this “extravagance” for days and “poisoned” the disciples’ views, such that four days after the anointing, they began to argue that it was a waste of time and expressed their displeasure publicly.
The Third Anointing—After the Triumphal Entry and Just Before the Crucifixion
Jesus’ last anointing is recorded chronologically in both theMatthew 26:6–13 andMark 14:3–9 narratives, which are identical to one another. Let’s have a look at the facts as they are reported in the two passages: Immediately following the Triumphal Entry and two days before the Passover, Christ was anointed with oil, which took place just before his death on the cross.
- This occurred in the house of Simon the Leper in Bethany, where the incident took place. Some have attempted to reconcile the Matthew and Mark narratives with the Luke account on the basis of the host’s name being Simon, but this has proven unsuccessful. This is certainly not the same Simon who appears in Luke’s story because a leper, even one who had been cleansed of his sins, would have been refused membership as a Pharisee. In addition, as previously stated, the dates and locations are different. As far as we know, this is the only story in which Jesus’ head (rather than his feet) was anointed. According to some stories, an anonymous lady broke an alabaster box containing fragrant oil (in other versions, it is referred to as “ointment”) and poured it on Jesus’ head. The lady appears to have approached Jesus from the front before she broke the box open
- Jesus mentions her, but does not appear to address her directly
- The box is identified as spikenard by Mark. She will be remembered as a result of her actions, according to him, everywhere the gospel is proclaimed. For some who have attempted to reconcile this narrative with the one recorded in John, it is exceedingly implausible that Jesus would not mention her name or speak directly to her if she was Mary, the sister of Lazarus, as some have claimed. But the circumstances are different this time, as previously said
- The lady here anointed Jesus’ head rather than his feet, and she did not do it with her hair
- And several of the disciples are concerned at the expense of this, with more than one objecting out loud. This anointing took place after the Triumphal Entry and two days before the Passover, just before Christ was crucified
- It took place after the Triumphal Entry and two days before the Passover
- It took place just before Christ was crucified
Another Possible Solution
Because of the many parallels between the stories of Matthew, Mark, and John, many experts believe that a different explanation than that provided above is preferable. 2 They think that the events described in these three Gospels occurred at the same time. Take a look at the following similarities:
- The ointment was evidently worth the same amount (300 denarii) according to the narratives, and several persons in the room objected to the deed
- Matthew and Mark describe the disciples as being outraged, while John states that Judas raised his voice in opposition to the conduct. When the Lord speaks to the disciples and Judas, His response is virtually same in all accounts, albeit His response in John is slightly shorter. In response, he informs them that they will always have the poor with them and that they should leave her alone because her actions are connected to his burial.
According to this probable harmonization, John is accurate in stating that this occurrence occurred in Bethany six days before the Passover celebration. When the incident took place, Matthew and Mark don’t say when it did so explicitly. In these two Gospels, it comes after a discussion of the Jewish authorities’ conspiring to capture and execute Jesus, a debate that was believed to have taken place two days before the Passover holiday. As part of this proposed solution, Matthew and Mark make a passing reference to the account of Christ’s anointing four days earlier before returning to the narrative of Christ’s betrayal by Judas in Matthew 26:14 and Mark 14:10.
This, however, poses a number of additional issues.
Although it is unlikely, it is plausible that Simon the Leper invited Jesus and his followers over for a supper, and that Martha aided with the food preparation at his home.
Also, according to this interpretation, the Lord’s head and feet were anointed at the same moment because Matthew and Mark mention the Lord’s head being anointed while John emphasizes the Lord’s feet being anointed.
Different Circumstances, Different Dates, and Different Accounts
Following this possible harmonization, John accurately indicates that this occurrence occurred in Bethany six days before the Passover holiday. When the event had happened, Matthew and Mark don’t say anything about it. According to these two Gospels, it comes after a discussion about the Jewish authorities’ scheming to capture and execute Jesus, a debate that is believed to have taken place two days before the Passover festival. As part of this proposed solution, Matthew and Mark make a passing reference to the account of Christ’s anointing four days earlier before returning to the narrative of Christ’s betrayal by Judas in Matthew 26:14 and Mark 14:10.
As a result, there are additional challenges.
The possibility exists that Simon the Leper hosted a lunch for Jesus and his companions, and that Martha aided in the preparation and distribution of the food.
The Unnamed Woman With the Alabaster Jar
As far as our perceptions of Bible women go, how did we get from sinner to whore? This harsh phrase is used solely to draw attention to the false dichotomy that has been given to Bible women, and it is not intended to imply that any woman should be subjected to this name.) Luke 7:36-39 describes a lady who approaches a house where Jesus is eating with her damaged and crying body. Using her hair to wipe the oil and tears off his feet, she anoints them with a kiss. The males in attendance are talking about her as if she isn’t even present.
With reference to the mystery woman’s character in our contemporary environment, it is simple to interpret her as “promiscuous.” Christians have historically had a proclivity to read Bible women’s non-specific sin as sexual immorality, and female promiscuity is frequently inferred from the text without any support from the text itself.
- Sometimes Bible professors go beyond suggestion and assert categorically that the anonymous lady was unquestionably a prostitute—again, despite the absence of any specific scriptural proof to support their claim.
- A footnote in the NASB refers to her as “immoral,” and there is a great deal of discussion about her character.
- Mary, whose brother Lazarus was ill, anointed the Lord with ointment and washed His feet with her hair, was the Mary who did all of this” (John 11:2).
- Because Luke’s Gospel does not include a chronological account of Jesus’ life and career, it is plausible to assume that event occurred later in Jesus’ mission than previously believed.
- According to some academics, the unidentified lady’s position as a sexually disgraced woman, a prostitute, is so unquestionable that the unnamed woman in Luke 7 must be a distinct woman from the Mary who appears in John’s comparable account.
- Jesus was twice asked to a Pharisee’s home to dine, on different occasions.
- On both instances, Jesus was invited by a Pharisee who went by the name of Simon.
It’s not unreasonable to speculate that two women anointed Jesus with oil at some point during his life.
In Luke’s tale, the nameless lady is thought to be a prostitute, however in John’s version, she is identified as Mary.
Examine Mary in further detail.
She then went back to her place of grieving.
Then he requested that he be transported to Lazarus, who he then revived from the grave.
But then she witnessed the miracle of Lazarus’ resurrection, something she will never forget.
She performed a great act of faith by breaking a pricey container of perfume and anointing Jesus with it.
She washed his feet with her own hair, which was a wonderful act of remorse on her part.
When Jesus allowed such a “sinful lady” to come close to him, Simon, the Pharisee, became embarrassingly ashamed.
Jesus, on the other hand, challenged Simon about his preconceived notions about Mary.
During the time when Jesus was carried off the crucifixion and put in a tomb, “Mary Magdalene and another Mary, who was sitting across the grave, were present” (Matthew 27:61).
She was poised and ready to anoint her savior once more.
The believer who anointed Jesus before his crucifixion wasn’t a nameless lady with a history of sexual wrongdoing.
It is not honest to cast another woman in that part since we are having difficulty reconciling two different versions of the same woman.
No, she had a specific objective in mind: to anoint her savior.
In the same way as Mary did, women can gain knowledge at the foot of the Messiah.
And when we fall short and miss the true character of Jesus, we can come to him without feeling guilty.
This is the third installment of a series of articles examining what Christians have been taught about women in the Bible.
Read part 1 of Rahab’s story. Deborah the Judge and Jael the Just are featured in Part 2 of The Righteousand. Read Female and Male in Four Anointing Stories for additional information on this subject.
Matthew 26:6–13; Mark 14:3–9; Luke 7:36–50; John 12:1–8
As far as our perceptions of Bible women go, how can we get from sinner to whore? This harsh name is used solely to draw attention to the false dichotomy that has been given to Bible women, and it is not intended to indicate that any woman should be subjected to this designation.) Luke 7:36-39 describes a lady who approaches a house where Jesus is eating with her damaged, crying body. Using her hair to wipe the oil and tears from his feet, she anoints them with a gentle touch. It’s as if she isn’t even there, because the males in the room are talking about her.
With reference to the mystery woman’s character in our present environment, it is simple to interpret her as “promiscuous.” Historically, Christians have had a tendency to read non-specific sin in the Bible as sexual immorality, and female promiscuity is frequently inferred from the text despite the fact that the language does not support this inference.
- It is possible that some Bible professors would go further than innuendo and assert categorically that the anonymous lady was unquestionably a prostitute, despite the fact that there is no specific scripture supporting such an assertion.
- There is a lot of conjecture about her character, which is supported by a footnote in the NASB.
- Mary, whose brother Lazarus was ill, anointed the Lord with ointment and washed His feet with her hair, was the Mary who did all of these things.
- According to the commonly accepted chronology of Jesus’ career, the anointing of the apostles took place sometime after Jesus resurrected Lazarus from the dead but before the execution of Christ.
- The identical event is told in John’s Gospel, and the unidentified lady is identified as Mary, the sister of Martha and Lazarus, who is also mentioned in the other gospels.
- Due to the conflicting gospel stories, the following would be the result.
- On two different occasions, Jesus was invited to a Pharisee’s home for supper by his host.
The Pharisee who invited Jesus on both occasions went by the name of Simon.
The woman who anointed Jesus with oil in Luke’s account is a sexually disgraced prostitute, while the woman who anointed Jesus with oil in John’s account is a respected follower of Jesus who appears in an entirely different story.
To make such an assumption, however, would be erroneous.
We must reconsider our preconceptions about the lady who anointed Jesus with oil if these two verses are referring to the same person, Mary.
The story of Lazarus’ death and resurrection includes a confrontation between Mary and Jesus, who was angry that he had not been present to save her brother from death.
His heart was broken because she didn’t grasp the whole scope of Jesus’ identity, and he grieved as a result of it.
Even Mary, who had sat at the feet of the Master and had been applauded for choosing the better thing, was disappointed.
She anointed Jesus with expensive perfume after breaking the container in a wonderful show of trust.
With her own hair, she dried his feet in a lovely display of contrition.
Simon, a Pharisee, was shocked that Jesus would allow such a “sinful lady” to get close enough to him to be touched by her.
Simon, on the other hand, was addressed by Jesus regarding his preconceived notions of Mary.
It was “Mary Magdalene who was present, as well as the other Mary who was seated opposite the grave” when Jesus was lifted off his cross and put in a tomb (Matthew 27:61).
This time, she was prepared to sanctify her savior once more.
Not only was the believer who anointed Jesus before his execution a nameless woman with no prior criminal record, but she also had a history of sexual transgression.
It is not honest to cast another woman in that part just because we are having difficulty reconciling two different narratives of the same woman.
Rather, she arrived with a specific goal in mind: to anoint her savior.
In the same way as Mary did, women may learn at the foot of Jesus.
We may come to Jesus without feeling guilty or ashamed when we fall short of his actual character.
A series of articles investigating what Christians have been taught about women in the Bible continues with this piece.
See Rahab’s first chapter for more information. Deborah the Judge and Jael the Just are featured in The Righteousand, Part 2: The Righteous and the Just. Read Female and Male in Four Anointing Stories for additional information on this topic.
Jesus Anointed at Bethany
Leprosy was a name used to describe a variety of skin ailments; see Leviticus 13 for further information. 3b Andwhilehewasatc BethanyinthehouseofSimontheleper, “A href=” f1-“>Anchor text: 1ashewasrecliningattable,awomancamewithanalabasterflaskofointmentofpurenard,verycostly,andshebroketheflaskandpoureditoverhishead. Four people expressed their outrage by asking themselves, “Why was the ointment used in that manner? 5 Thisointmentcouldhavebeenavailableforsaleformorethanthreehundreddollars. arii It was equivalent to a day’s salary for a laborer ” href=” f2-“> “>2 and d were given to the less fortunate.” And they reprimanded her for it.
However, you will not always have me.
9 And really, I say to you, wherever the gospel is preached throughout the entire globe, what she has done will be remembered.”
A Sinful Woman Forgiven
36u One of the Pharisees approached him and invited him to join him for dinner; he agreed and went to the Pharisee’s house to accept the invitation. And behold, a woman of the city, who was a sinner, when she learned that he was reclining at table in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster flask of ointment,38 and standing behind himathisfeet with tears in her eyes began to wet thisfeet with her tears and wipe them with the hair of her head, kissing his feet and anointing them with the ointment.
- One owed five hundred and fifty denarii, while the other owed fifty.
- Nowwhichofthemwilllovehimmore?” 43 Simon responded, “I’m assuming it was for this person that he forgave the greater debt.” Andhesaidtohim,“Youhavejudgedrightly.” 44 ThenturningtowardthewomanhesaidtoSimon,“Doyouseethiswoman?
- .45f You offered me a kiss, but she hasn’t stopped kissing my feet from the moment I arrived.
- 47 As a result, I tell you that her crimes, which are numerous, are forgiven—because she was greatly loved.
49 Then those who were seated at the meal with him started to ask among” href=” f1-“>1themselves, “Who is he, who even forgives sins?” 50 “Your faith has rescued you,” Jesus told the woman, “and now depart in peace.”
Mary Anoints Jesus at Bethany
12 Because it was six days before Passover,j Jesus traveled to Bethany,k where Lazarus was, whom Jesus had resurrected from the grave. 2 As a result, they prepared a meal for him there. Martha served, and Lazarus was among those who sat at the table with him. Therefore, 3m Marytookapound Greeklitera; an alitra (or Roman pound) was about 11 1/2 ounces or 327 grams. A href=” f1-“>1ofexpensiveointmentmadefrompurenard was applied to the feet of Jesus, and she cleaned the soles of his feet with her hair.
4 Nevertheless, Judas Iscariot, one of his followers (and the man who was about to betrayhim), asked,5 “Why wasn’t this ointment sold for three hundred denarii?” “Adenarius was the equivalent of a day’s wage for a laborer.” Is 2andn given to the poor?
6 He stated this not because he cared for the poor, but because he was a thief, and because he was in charge of the moneybag, he used it to help himself to whatever was placed in it.
What is the significance of Jesus being anointed by a woman with expensive perfume?
QuestionAnswer All four gospels have a description of Jesus being anointed by a woman with an expensive jar of perfume (Matthew 26:6–13; Mark 14:3–9; Luke 7:36–50; John 12:1–8), which is consistent with the tradition. While Matthew and Mark both recount the same story, they do not identify the lady; Luke recounts a different woman, who is likewise unnamed, on a separate occasion; and John, in yet another instance, identifies the woman as Mary of Bethany (John 11:2), the sister of Martha and Lazarus.
- “Now when Jesus was at Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, a woman came up to him with an alabaster flask of very expensive ointment, and she poured it on his head as he reclined at the table,” Matthew 26:6–7 (ESV).
- As a teaching lesson for the disciples, Matthew emphasizes the anointing of Jesus, which causes them to get enraged as a result of the woman’s extravagant wastefulness.
- During the anointing, Christ reveals that it is to prepare His corpse for burial and that the woman’s gesture of love would be remembered eternally everywhere the good news is broadcast across the world.
- As they have done in the past, the woman’s detractors accuse her of giving an exorbitant present, claiming that it could have been sold for more than a year’s pay (Mark 14:5).
- Jesus informs them that He will not be among them for a lengthy period of time, an allusion to His coming death and interment.
- There may also be an inference of Jesus’ monarchy, because the anointing of the head was frequently related with the consecration of kings in the Old Testament (1 Samuel 9:15–10:1; 16:12–13; 1 Kings 1:38–40; 1 Kings 1:38–40).
- Anoint Jesus’ feet with a sinful woman’s love and gratitude while she dines in the home of Simon the Pharisee, who had arrogantly omitted to give the traditional respect and hospitality to his visitor.
The tale is identical to those told in the other gospels, with the exception that this anointing takes place six days before Passover and that Judas is identified as the disciple who complains to the “wasted” oil.
When Judas criticizes Mary, Jesus responds by emphasizing the unique chance that Mary had: “You will always have the poor among you, but you will not always have me” (Matthew 25:34-35).
It is Mary’s anointing that once again draws attention to Christ’s identification as Messiah-King, but it also draws attention to His lowly position as Servant-King.
In each of the accounts, a woman performs an elaborate act of devotion by pouring forth a rare and expensive perfume.
Two anointings of Jesus take place during the week of Passover, both of which are connected to His impending death and burial on the cross.
In each instance, the woman’s behaviors communicate more than she is aware of.
Jesus Christ has been anointed as God’s Messiah.
As a result, Christ is the Greek counterpart of the termMessiah.
Acts 10:38; Luke 4:18).
Questions regarding Jesus Christ (return to top of page) In what way does Jesus being anointed by a lady with costly perfume signify anything?
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The Woman who Anoints Jesus
Andrea Solario is a freelance writer and editor based in New York City (c.1524) Mary Magdalene (also known as Mary Magdalene) is a Christian saint who lived during the time of Jesus Christ. What she has done will be told in her memory whenever the gospel is proclaimed throughout the world,’ says the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (Matthew 14:9) Despite the fact that the lady who pours perfume on Jesus in the days before his death is mentioned in the gospels, it is difficult to learn anything about her beyond the broad strokes provided by the gospel accounts.
According to Mark’s account (usually regarded to be the first of the gospels to have been written down, and to be the simplest in terms of language and organization), these are the first words of Jesus: “I am the Christ, the Son of the living God.” While Jesus was at Bethany, resting at the table in the home of Simon the Leper, a woman arrived with an alabaster jar of extremely expensive perfume, made of pure nard.
- She shattered the container and sprayed the perfume all over his face.
- It might have been sold for more than a year’s earnings and the money given to the poor.’ And they reprimanded her severely.
- ‘What are you doing troubling her with?
- You will always have the poor with you, and you will be able to assist them whenever you wish.
- She did the best she could with the resources she had.
- Indeed, I assure you, wherever the gospel is spread throughout the world, what she has done will be shared as well, in her memory.’ (Matthew 14:3-9) Other gospels include additional information that either explain or, at times, obfuscate what is going on.
There has been widespread agreement over the centuries that a woman’s imagination is limited to sexual immorality, which may be due to a fixation on the part of predominantly male commentators over time, or perhaps a lack of confidence on their part in the opposite genital, but this has been the consensus for a long time.
(In this instance, Simon is labeled as a Pharisee rather than a leper, though it’s conceivable to be both at the same time, if that’s feasible.) A finer degree of hospitality should be provided to guests than that provided to the local prostitute, even if she is a wealthy one, by those who have been forgiven much and love much in return.
- Judas is the moniker given to the person who raises his voice against the waste in the same narrative.
- Whether or not there is a Mary, which one?
- The biblical author Luke refers to her as a “sinful lady,” whilst the author John refers to her as Mary of Bethany.
- Even though Matthew and Mark do not include the woman’s name, they do mention the location, which is in Bethany, at the house of Simon the Leper.
- Apparently, nothing more than the fact that they both share the same name appears to be the basis for this identification.
- But there is nothing in the Bible that suggests Mary Magdalene was either a prostitute or a Mary from Bethany, and her reputation appears to be based on nothing more than the fact that it is a handy way to limit the number of individuals who have the same name as she is.
- According to the gospels, the perfume is composed entirely of nard and that the bottle is fashioned of alabaster.
Originally from Greece, the anlabastron was a tiny jar made of alabaster or glass that was used to store little items.
Nard oil is extracted from the leaves of the spikenard plant.
According to those in attendance, the perfume bottle is worth more than 300 denarii.
As a result, 300 denarii would be equivalent to little more than a kilogram of silver, which would sell for something in the neighborhood of £480 today.
For most people, 300 denarii would have been the equivalent of a year’s wages.
Salabastronof nard, which was served to the woman, was clearly a costly and uncommon import.
Due to its distinctive fragrance, which includes notes of jasmine, carnation, lemon, bergamot, and benzoin (a balsamic resin produced from the bark of plants in the family Styrax), it is considered a highly costly variety of herbal tea.) What is the source of her illness?
The bottle has not been opened, which suggests that it was not meant for everyday use but rather as an investment or a safe-keeping container for money.
As a response to the woman’s criticism, Jesus draws their attention to his impending death and then quotes Deuteronomy 15:11, which is a verse from the Old Testament.
He argues that they have missed the point: that the good has always been the enemy of the best.
According to Jesus, ‘you will always have the poor with you, and you will be able to help them at any time you want.’ Is there a second implication here: ” ‘You express dissatisfaction with the way this woman manages her fortune.
Have you thought about how many times your charity has benefited the poor?’ Knowing that Judas was the mastermind behind the squabbling adds yet another layer of complexity to the story.
Is it feasible to detect a tinge of irony or even sarcasm in this passage – particularly in light of upcoming events?
If you have me crucified, don’t worry – there will still be plenty of impoverished people for you to look for afterward, and you’ll even have an additional 30 silver pieces in your pocket to give to them.
First and foremost, there will be occasions when we are tempted to choose a decent course of action over one that is even more advantageous.
There are instances when commemorating an occasion or honoring it in some way is appropriate – even if the money could have been better spent on another worthwhile endeavor.
This is related to the way we spend our money, as well as how we respond when we witness other people spending theirs as they see fit.
Do we hold ourselves to the same standards?
If people were aware of the specifics of our financial situation, where would they place us on the spectrum that runs between the affluent and the widow in Mark 14:41-44?
According to Judas, the money should have been donated to the impoverished instead of being thrown away as “trash.” We are, on the other hand, more than capable of deluding ourselves, and we are certainly capable of deluding others as well.
Judas’ rage was a front for his more selfish purpose of avarice.
Especially when the truth does not reflect favorably on us, it is easy to provide a simple explanation to an unexpectedly powerful emotional reaction without analyzing it thoroughly.
‘The desires of a person’s heart are deep waters, but a person who has insight pulls them to the surface.” Proverbs 20:5 explains how to be wise. This essay was first featured in our January 2018 Engage Newsletter.
The Anointing Woman — Luke 7:36-8:3 — Kathleen Rushton’s Scripture Writings
Using biblical evidence, Kathleen Rushton demonstrates that the woman who anoints Jesus’ head in Simon the Pharisee’s house in Luke 7:36-8:3 is not the same woman as Mary Magdalene or Mary of Bethany, with whom she has been identified in the past. What do you think of the surprised expressions of the two disciples to the left and right of the woman at the top of the remarkable 1260 illustration of the Anointing of the Saviour’s head? My students are doing it. Their conclusion, following an analysis of the anointing lady episodes in the four gospels, is: “Anointing Jesus’ head?
Mary of Bethany (Lk 12:1–8) and the woman considered a sinner who anoints Jesus’ feet (Lk 7:36–50) were the primary subjects of the study.
Sunday’s Roman Lectionary also takes precedence over the head-anointing tradition, despite Jesus’ words to the disciples that “wherever the good news is proclaimed throughout the entire world, what she has done will be told in memory of her.” On Palm Sunday, the tale of Mark’s passion is told via his words (Year B).
- The passage from Luke 8:1–3 has been inserted, which has contributed to her being associated with Mary Magdalene.
- “[Jesus went] through cities and villages preaching and bringing the good news about the coming kingdom of God,” according to the Bible.
- According to what we read, they “had been healed of bad spirits and infirmities,” seven devils had been expelled from Mary named Magdalene, and “they had supplied for them out of their own resources.” Many ailments were attributed to demon possession by the ancients.
- “Seven” is a significant number and symbolizes frequency and strength (cf.
- A strong focus is placed on the magnificence of Jesus’ power throughout the text.
- The Greek word diakonein, which is translated as “given,” has a wide range of meanings.
- It is used of women in Luke 8:1–3, although not in the context of the home, but rather in the public realm of missionary journey.
Joanna, the wife of Chuza, King Herod’s steward, possessed considerable riches and social standing.
Jesus advises against accumulating riches, narrates the story of the devoted poor, and urges some to forsake their possessions and come after him.
Christians were well-known for their willingness to share everything (Acts 2:42–47; 4:32–37).
She is not the same as Mary Magdalene.
According to the 1962 Marian Missal, the feast day of St Mary Magdalen, Penitent, is celebrated on July 22nd, and a brief blurb describes her as “first a sinner, then converted by the Lord.” She was beside the cross.
She is also identified as Lazarus’ sister in the Collect Prayer: “Jesus, in response to her prayers, raised her brother Lazarus to life, after he had been dead for four days.” The gospel reading for the day (Lk 7:36-50) further confounds her by comparing her to a different lady.
The 1969 Missal, which was produced as part of the Liturgical Reform of Vatican II, and the retranslated Missal have drastically different focuses on the same events (2010).
The gospel tells the tale of Jesus’ resurrection and commission (Jn 20:1–2; 11–18), and it is the message of salvation.
They formally restore Mary Magdalene to her pre-Christian status of Apostle of the Apostles, which she had previously held.
As far as we know, Luke is the only gospel writer to refer to the lady who anoints Jesus’ feet as “a woman from the city, who was a sinner” (Lk 7:37).
(Despite the fact that Luke emphasizes Peter’s sinfulness in his “call” tale, interpreters have never speculated about the nature of Peter’s sins.) During Jesus’ career, the tale of the anointing takes place in the midst of a supper in Galilee.
During the initial appetisers, servants attended on the visitors, cleaning their hands and anointing them with fragrant oils as they arrived.
In those days, men and women ate at separate tables, and a widow was the only woman allowed to serve men at meals.
He had not shown the courtesy that was required of him.
In the tale, the word “anointing” is used five times in various forms or contexts (Lk 7:38, 46).
A magnificent alabaster jar filled with pricey fragrant vegetable oil and other components of the Earth are used to create a unique composition of ingredients (myron).
While the Bible indicates that the lady was a sinner in Luke 7:37, the Greek word used in the verse means “used to be.” Anointing feet with myron was also associated with strong sexual implications in certain ancient writings.
The acts and motivations of the lady are more essential than her immoral state of mind.
Forgiveness is the focal topic of the story.
Tithes, taxes, and tolls were levied against them, depleting their little resources.
The carpenters, for example, were common among people who were displaced from their country, and it is possible that Jesus’ forefathers suffered that fate.
This narrative is underpinned by the exploitation of indebtedness as well as negative sexual overtones.
It includes working in mines and quarries, which contribute to the damage of the environment through the mining of minerals such as tin and coltan, which are used to manufacture my cell phone.
It is possible to speculate about how Luke may deliver his narrative in this environment. In addition, how would Jesus explain his parable of the debtors? Published in the June 2016 issue of Tui Motu InterIslandsmagazine (number 205).
Was it Martha’s sister Mary or Mary Magdalene who washed Jesus’ feet with her tears and dried them with her hair?
It takes a little of detective effort to piece together the facts about the numerous Marys referenced in the gospel accounts. The scenario you cite is particularly perplexing since there are four separate narratives with differing specifics in each of the four gospels, making it difficult to follow the narrative. A lady who is not identified is mentioned in both Mark and Matthew as anointing Jesus’ head with either nard or ointment. An anonymous woman “who was a sinner,” according to Luke, washed Jesus’ feet with her tears, anointed them with ointment, and dried them with her hair before he was crucified.
Only in John’s gospel is the woman named as Mary of Bethany.
If there was a real occurrence involving a lady anointing Jesus in a very lavish manner, we will never be able to determine who it was that performed such a love gesture for Jesus.
Mary Anoints Jesus’ Feet – Keeping What Is Given
Written by Richard Greene As a result, six days before the Passover, Jesus traveled to Bethany, where Lazarus was recuperating after being resurrected from the dead by Jesus. In any case, they served Him dinner there, with Martha doing the cooking; nonetheless, Lazarus was among those who sat at the table with Him. As a result, Mary anointed the feet of Jesus with a pound of extremely expensive pure nard perfume and cleaned His feet with her hair, causing the entire house to smell divinely of the perfume.
- Therefore, Jesus responded, ‘Let her alone, so that she may preserve it until the day of My burial.
- (John 12:1-8, New International Version)Why are you bothering the woman?
- Because you always have the poor with you, but you don’t always have Me with you, which is a shame.
- What this woman has done will be remembered and discussed everywhere the gospel of Jesus Christ is spread across the world, I assure you.
- In the aftermath of raising Lazarus from the grave, the crowds were enraged and demanded that Jesus be made their king.
- Jesus returned to Bethany, where a meal had been prepared just for Him.
- These opening lines depict the remembrance scene of Mary anointing Jesus’ feet with a pound of pure nard and wiping them with her hair, as recorded in the Gospel of Luke.
The question is, “Why wasn’t this perfume sold for three hundred denarii and given out to the poor?” One denarius was equal to one day’s wages, so if this perfume was indeed worth three hundred denarii, it was a very expensive bottle of perfume!
This demonstrates the wretchedness of Judas’ heart.
Sadly, we can see examples of this in many areas in today’s church, particularly among those who preach the prosperity message.
The contrast between Mary, who pours out on Jesus the most valuable thing she possesses, giving it all to Him in a memorable act of pure adoration, and Judas the thief, who moans that this sacrifice was squandered – spent on Jesus – is striking.
What a priceless gift she was offering to her Lord in this moment!
What have you been entrusted with by Jesus?
This chapter demonstrates to us that there will be individuals who reject any act of pure devotion, sacrifice, or generosity, and the greater the sacrifice, the more likely it is that they would protest that it was a waste of time.
Please keep in mind that Judas’ treachery occurred immediately after he had witnessed one of the greatest miracles of all time — the raising of a dead man from the dead after he had been buried for four days in a tomb.
Today, we commemorate Mary and pay tribute to her gesture of kindness.
This loving gesture was to be broadcast throughout time until the judgment, and in making this declaration, Mary did in fact genuinely ‘save’ the last drop of the precious perfume that was poured onto Jesus’ feet.
Was there ever a moment when someone gave anything to Jesus without also deciding to keep it?
But Mary didn’t only pour all of the nard on Jesus; she also ‘kept it all.’ In opposition to the day of his burial?
May you pour out your life for our Lord Jesus Christ, and may the fragrance of your sacrifice flood the hearts of all those who come into contact with you for His glory as a result of your sacrifice.
Was it His Head, Feet, or Even Mary?
In the gospel narratives, the lady who is associated with the washing of Jesus’ feet is portrayed as a woman who enters the home, breaks open the alabaster jar, and washes Jesus’ feet. She is depicted similarly in Matthew, Mark, and Luke. Here are some examples of those accounts: Mat 26:6-13 King James Version – 6 When Jesus was in Bethany, at the home of Simon the leper, 7 a woman approached him with an alabaster box containing exceedingly valuable ointment, and she poured it on his head as he sat at a table eating.
- 10 When Jesus saw what they were talking about, he responded to them, “Why concern you the woman?” since she had done a wonderful thing in my life.
- 4 And there were those who had wrath within themselves, and asked, Why was this waste of the ointment made?
- They also made disparaging remarks about her.
- She has done a wonderful thing in me,’ Jesus responded.
- And he went into the house of a Pharisee and sat down to a meal with him.
- These stories are referred to as the synoptic gospels because the accounts of the life of Jesus in these three gospels are strikingly similar to one another.
- It is claimed that Mark was the first gospel, and that it was a compilation of sermons delivered by Peter (remember that Mark was not a direct disciple of Jesus, but a disciple of Peter).
Throughout each instance, the writer added a little bit more to the tale of Jesus as it was first recounted by Mark.
Here’s what happened in that account: Jhn 12:1-11 KJV – 1 Then Jesus went to Bethany, where Lazarus was, who had been dead for six days before the Passover, and raised him from the dead.
3 Then Mary took a pound of spikenard ointment, which was extremely expensive, and anointed the feet of Jesus, wiping his feet with her hair, and the entire house was filled with the fragrance of the spikenard ointment.
There might be a number of factors at play: 1- There are two distinct occurrences here.
One occurrence takes place at Martha’s home, and the other takes place in Simon the Leper’s home.
3- The name and locale was not kept in John’s narrative, but was retained in the synoptic gospel 4) The incident takes place in Bethany, at the home of Simon the Leper, who might have been related to Lazarus and who might have been a pharisee (remember that the pharisees were a Jewish sect that was extremely popular in Jesus’ day).
The possibility exists that they lived in close proximity to one another, or perhaps with one another, which we do not know.
John made the decision to include her name on the list.
Two things are true: 1) Mary is always shown in Scripture as a highly devout follower of Christ, and 2) Mary is frequently seen at the feet of Jesus.
In all of these instances when Scripture appears to differ across the gospels, always seek for the parallels and investigate the historicity of the passages before reaching any judgments about the text. pk