Gospel: John 12:1-11
Six days before the Passover, Jesus came to Bethany, where he had raised Lazarus, the dead man, to life. Now they gave a dinner for him, and while Martha waited on them, Lazarus sat at the table with Jesus.
Then Mary took a pound of costly perfume, made from genuine spikenard, and anointed the feet of Jesus, wiping them with her hair. And the whole house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume.
Judas Iscariot—the disciple who was to betray Jesus— remarked, “This perfume could have been sold for three hundred silver coins, and the money given to the poor.” Judas, indeed, had no concern for the poor; he was a thief, and as he held the common purse, he used to help himself to the funds.
But Jesus spoke up, “Leave her alone. Was she not keeping it for the day of my burial? (The poor you always have with you, but you will not always have me.)”
Many Jews heard that Jesus was there and they came, not only because of Jesus, but also to see Lazarus whom he had raised from the dead. So the chief priests thought about killing Lazarus as well, for many of the Jews were drifting away because of him, and believing in Jesus.
“Was she not keeping it for the day of my burial?“
Jesus valued friendship. He had friends and visited them in Bethany, near Jerusalem. They were Martha, Mary and Lazarus. One time they invited him. Martha lavished him with food, while Mary lavished him with costly perfume.
Not all were happy. Judas Iscariot felt money was wasted. The chief priests also were not happy. They wanted to eliminate Jesus because he was becoming popular. Since he brought back Lazarus to life, Lazarus too was targeted. Jesus’ presence was bad for religion. People did not believe anymore in their own religion. His enemies accused Jesus of misleading people from the fold. Jesus had to go.
The prophet Isaiah living some centuries earlier has long disagreed with their claims. The Father upholds Jesus. God’s Spirit is with him. He is out there to bring justice to the nations.
Who are we then to reject him? It is easy to follow him if we are not attached to our old beliefs, customs and traditions. We too can be friends with Jesus, by entertaining him in his words and sacraments as taught by the Church.
© Copyright Bible Diary 2019