John 12:2&3: There they made him supper, and Martha served: but Lazarus was one of them that sat at the table with him. Then took Mary a pound of ointment of spikenard, very costly, and anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped his feet with her hair: and the house was filled with the odour of the ointment.
As we are in Easter week, in the midst of a world crisis, where nations are in lockdown, we remember this week the events that lead up to the crucifixion. The days may not coincide with history exactly, as we are following the traditional calendar. On the Monday after the Sunday triumphal entry we know that on the Monday Jesus stayed in Bethany, if we go by the narratives. Only John gives the details of that night. We see three people in their different spiritual states:
Lazarus: resurrected ; Martha: ministry and service ; Mary: worship and adoration. A very interesting combination and a very wonderful evening was had. John makes the emphasis of Mary and her practical expression of spread anointing ointment over Jesus’ feet. Jesus rebuked Judas Iscariot for his comments, not seeing this expression as a act of worship and preparation.
It appears that the ointment spread its aroma through the house, and this aroma Jesus alluded to a remembrance that each generation would have over this act.
The aroma of our worship only comes from the brokeness of our vessel.
Brokeness is the theme of Jesus’ ultimate work at Calvary and all that led from the betrayal to the Cross. The aroma of this, spreads out through eternity. Mary was actually prophesying from her act of worship and love.
Our brokeness lets the aroma of Christ and His work of his being the Paschal lamb, travel the “house” of the world. For Mary this cost to her ministration, expensive ointment cost to her nothing than her love for her Master.
When you consider the complete work of Jesus in that household with Lazarus, ressurrected to new life, for Martha, perfected service, and Mary in the life of the worshipper. This is what God is doing in this season, perfecting His Church in these 3 ingredients, to complete His House.
Mary prophesied Jesus’ burial of His first part of the mission, earthly, to transition to His heavenly glorified mission. Mary was magnifying Her Lord. This was a ministry TO JESUS. We speak much concerning ministry in terms of TO people. However the purpose of this lockdown is to transition us to MINISTER TO JESUS. His gifts have been used much for human ambition, now God has done away temporarily of the platforms and the projects, buildings, put everyone home. Jesus desires us to minister to Him! How will we do it? For Mary she did what was costly to her, a year’s wages all embodied in a vessel of ointment. What will it cost us? Will it cost us the brokeness of our ambitions, our visibility?
It will be in this process that the Household of God shall be remembered and known throughout the world. Prophesying and magnifying the Lord in our homes.
The ressurected Life of Christ was at that Table, through the person of Lazarus, and God calls out through us to a dead world, presenting His ressurrecting power as a reality. As many are dying each day, Jesus is able to draw back from the grave, prophetic of the day when He too would conquer the grave.
That night must be memorable for John to remember it, being the Apostle of Love, to remember such a expression of love, and that would have shone out to him, as Jesus moulded him in the ways of love. How much in this season we need to embrace first Jesus’ love.
The supper in Bethany speaks of love, worship, service, new miraculous life. Are we not praying this now? First Jesus will say to us: ” I know what you need, but first minister this day to Me all your love and adoration, and My Perfume will fill your house”
Be ministered to, so that you can minister to Him.