In the last blog we thought about the Lord Jesus, at the beginning of the week, entering Jerusalem on a donkey. Prior to this Jesus was heading towards the city steadfastly for this final week. It was clear the religious authorities were plotting against Him. His disciples were warning Him against going to the city but nothing would stop the Lord Jesus from carrying out His Father’s plan. Time and time again He told them very plainly that He must be arrested, beaten and killed, and then three days later rise again (Mark ch10 vs32-34). But they didn’t understand Him; this made no sense to them.
The following two days after arriving in Jerusalem Jesus taught in the temple after throwing out the moneylenders. During this time the Pharisees and Sadducees questioned Jesus trying to catch Him out. After He left they planned His death just as He had predicted. It’s as if they were closing in on the Lord Jesus as the week began to grow darker. Mark tells us (ch11 vs11) that Jesus spent each night of this final week in Bethany with Mary, Martha and Lazarus. This little family (two sisters and a brother) were very close to Jesus. They cared for Him and gave Him and the disciples a place to stay as He travelled. I’m going to tell you why Mary from Bethany is probably my favorite woman in the whole bible.
In Mark ch14 vs3-9, Matt ch26 vs6-13 and John ch12 vs2-8 an amazing event is recorded for us. Mary quietly enters the room and anoints the head and feet of the Lord Jesus with very expensive perfume (that cost her years wages) and wipes His feet with her hair. The disciples (Judas vocally) begin to criticize her but Jesus cuts them off. He tells us she did this for His burial. This is amazing, Mary knew that Jesus was going to die and rise again. How did she know this? She listened to Him. Luke says she sat at His feet and listened (Luke ch10 vs39).
Out of everyone in the world only Jesus and Mary knew He must be killed and rise again. She knew more than all the disciples because she simply listened to Him and believed Him. Mary isn’t present at the cross or the grave with the other women who are too late to anoint the Lord’s body (he had risen again) because she did it in advance. Imagine what this meant to the Lord Jesus in a week where His friends would abandon Him. One would betray Him; the whole city wanted Him dead; He would be falsely accused, beaten, mocked and forsaken at the cross. No one had any room for Him except from one woman who came to Him and demonstrated for everyone to see that she loved Him. She is devoted to Him; she knows what He is going to do for her; she is thankful, and He means everything to her.
This event angers Judas so much that it is the final straw. Mark records right afterwards that Judas left and plotted with the authorities to sell Jesus for thirty pieces of silver. In other words Jesus meant nothing to him.
The bible teaches us that Jesus died for us to save us and He rose again three days later. One day He will come back again and all the world will be judged according to what we have done with Jesus. What about you? Are you like Judas: Jesus means nothing to you? Are you like the disciples and other women who didn’t listen and were too late? Or are you like Mary: grateful to Him for dying for you and wanting to please Him and follow Him? He died for you.