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Love Made Her Do It

"Now when Jesus was in Bethany, at the home of Simon the leper, [7] a woman came to Him with an alabaster vial of very costly perfume, and she poured it upon His head as He reclined at the table. [8] But the disciples were indignant when they saw this, and said, "Why this waste? (Matthew 26:6-8 NASB)

All four gospels carry a story of an anointing with perfume by a woman. Luke identifies the woman as "a notorious sinner." His account of a different woman than the other three. In Mark, like in Matthew, she is an unidentified woman, but John gives her a name. Mary. Martha and Lazarus' sister-Mary.

Mary loved Jesus. Three times her name is mentioned in the gospels, each time she is at the feet of Jesus. In Luke 10:38-42 she is at his feet, listening to Him teach, in John 11:28-32, she mourns her brother's death at His feet, and in John's version of our text, she anoints Him with perfume, at his feet.

Why did she give so much? Because she loved so much. Love made her do it! Why did the disciples consider her sacrifice a waste? Because they didn't understand that what she was doing was sacred-an act of pouring her most valuable thing on Jesus as an act of worship.

Good people, even religious people can miss a sacred moment because they've become so accustomed to the ordinary. That's what happened to Hannah in 1 Samuel 1:13. "As for Hannah, she was speaking in her heart, only her lips were moving, but her voice was not heard. So Eli thought she was drunk." ( NASB) 

Hannah was so troubled by the relentless teasing of her rival and so deeply moved in her spirit that she initiated a total surrender to God. In His temple, she poured out her soul to God-a sacred act, yet God's priest, knee deep in his own sin and the sins of his people didn't recognize the moment for what it was-a great sacrifice. Mary poured out a valuable treasure, worth a year's wages I'm told, but Hannah poured out something even more valuable-herself-her core. She poured out her soul to the Lord.

Does it get anymore sacred than that?

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