Good morning, happy Monday, and many blessings.
In today’s Gospel (John 12:1-11) we find Jesus coming to the home of His friends to find a few brief hours of encouragement and support from His disciples, the majority of which He knew would abandon Him during His darkest hour.
While this passage is given to us in the form of historical narrative, it is nonetheless instructive. It teaches us quite a bit about honoring Jesus. There is something that I want to highlight: Honor Jesus from your hearth.
Notice verse two and three. Here we find three different people mentioned, Martha, Lazarus, and Mary. It is interesting to note that each of these followers of Jesus had a different passion, a different disposition of heart in how they chose to honor Jesus.
The first one mentioned is Martha. The Scripture says they made Him as supper and Martha served. Go through the Scripture and you find this picture of Martha, cooking, serving, giving the best of her heart to God through the gift of hospitality. Because that was her gift to Jesus, it was a valid expression of her love and devotion to Jesus, but it was not the only valid expression of love and devotion to Jesus.
The next person mentioned is Lazarus. The Scripture simply says that Lazarus was one of those reclining at the table with Him. It would be easy to read something negative into the text, and call Lazarus lazy, but that would be a mistake. There is a specific reason the Scripture tells us that Lazarus was one of those reclining at the table with Jesus. While Martha wanted to serve Jesus, Lazarus simply wanted to enjoy His presence. He wanted to fellowship with Him, talk with Him, ask Him questions, and listen to Him speak, he wanted to enjoy every minute he had with the Master.
But then look at verse 3 back in John 12, where we find Mary, the sister of Martha and Lazarus. Instead of serving Jesus food, instead of simply enjoying a conversation with Him, Mary, moved with Love for the Savior, wanted to demonstrate her devotion in a more dramatic way.
I want you to stop for a moment and recognize that there are different levels at which we honor Jesus. There are different levels at which we worship Him, different levels at which we show Him how much we love Him.
Martha and Lazarus both loved Jesus, and for them their response to Him was perfectly normal, but the text shows us that what Mary felt led to do went way beyond what others had done.
The Scripture says she took a pound of spikenard, which was made from a plant which grows in India, and she anointed His feet with it and wiped his feet with her hair and the odor of the ointment filled the house.
Notice several things about what Mary did in anointing Jesus. She gave her best to Jesus. She was also willing to humble herself in order to honor Him. Mary worshiped despite criticism. When you're in love with Jesus, the aroma of that love, of that reverence, of that fellowship bleeds out all around you. Honor Jesus when we can.