…from Luke 7:36-50
(likely in Capernaum)
A certain woman of the city heard that Jesus was at the home of Simon, a Pharisee. So she came with an alabaster flask of ointment–her sins had weighed her down very heavily. Her tears washed Jesus’ feet, which she kissed and wiped with her hair–then anointed them with the oil–all tokens of the love she had come there to share.
Simon’s thought was that Jesus should have known that she was a woman to shun. If Jesus was truly a prophet, he would not have permitted her because of the things she’d done. Jesus then told him a story of two debtors, freely forgiven of debts of lesser and greater amounts. It was an explanation to Simon of a sinner’s gratefulness–her debt of sin was large (and, therefore, so was her love) by all accounts.
Jesus expressed appreciation for her kisses and for the tears that she had shed. “Your sins are forgiven” and “Your faith has saved you; go in peace,” He said. Those who sat at the table with Him began to discuss that, saying “Who is this?” His forgiveness of her sins was an authoritative statement they really couldn’t dismiss.
…from John 12:1-8
(in Bethany at the home of Lazarus, Martha, and Mary)
In another narrative, six days before Passover, the scriptures tell of Mary–who used spikenard, a costly oil–the fragrance of which, the entire house would carry. After supper, there in Bethany, she anointed Jesus’ feet, also wiping them with her hair. Judas then asked why the oil hadn’t been sold and the money been given to the poor–not that he actually did care.
Jesus told Judas to let her alone for she had kept the oil for His burial day. “For the poor you have with you always, but Me you do not have always,” was what He had to say.
…from Matthew 26:6-13 and Mark 14:3-9
A similar occurrence at the house of Simon the leper, Matthew and Mark record,
was that of a woman who took spikenard, pouring it, this time, upon the head of Jesus, her Lord. There were some who, like Judas, criticized her, saying that the oil might have been sold for the poor. But Jesus said she had done this for His burial, speaking of her with grace, and that in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, she would forever have a place.
Today, God is pouring out His love and the Holy Spirit upon each open heart. May we fill our own “alabaster jars,” with love for Him, and eagerly do our part. There’s a world of people Jesus died for, and many are in great need. Guide and strengthen us, Lord, as we seek to be Your servants, caring with both word and deed.
We thank You for Your great sacrifice; we thank You for Your steadfast love. We appreciate so much what it cost You to visit us from heaven above.
P. A. Oltrogge
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.” John 3:16
“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love. By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.” 1 John 4:7-11
“Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins.” 1 Peter 4:8
“And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly I say to you inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’” Matthew 25:40 (and verses 31-46) NKJV
“And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and are in him that is true, even in his Son, Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.” 1 John 5:20 KJV
“Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love. If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments, and abide in His love.” John 15:9-10
Scriptures: NASB/Ryrie Study Bible, or as noted
(These accounts were described as they’re told in the four different scripture references.)