Monday, 30 March 2009
Mark 14 tells two stories of two people and how they were involved in the preparation of Jesus for His death.
One was the woman who broke the alabaster jar of perfume and poured it on Jesus' head, which He said was preparation for His burial.
The other was Judas who agreed to betray Jesus to the chief priests, an act which Jesus said would bring such woe upon the betrayer that it would have been better for him to never have been born.
Jesus said that wherever the gospel was preached, the story of the woman would be told. Although He didn't say so, the story of Judas is also told wherever the gospel is preached.
Within 48 hours, Jesus was dead and buried, the woman's expensive perfume covering the smell of death, and Judas was also dead, having hanged himself after throwing his betrayal money back at the priests who had paid him. The woman was confused and grieving, but about to have the happiest surprise of her life when she saw Jesus alive again on Easter Sunday.
What a contrast between the two, Judas and the woman. Jesus always calls us to make a choice between pouring ourselves out for Him or holding tightly to the material things of life. Sometimes, like Judas, we hold onto the material just long enough to see how unimportant it is. Then, we throw it back, but it is too late. It has already contaminated us, already done its destructive work in our lives and the lives of others, already demanded a price far greater than its value.
Wouldn't this be a good time to break open the alabaster jar and lavish what we have on Jesus?