questioning Jesus, Mark 14, anointing ‘why’

7 Sep

‘Why’ is the hardest of questions. It is a hard question to ask and even harder question to frame and design.
In studying Jesus’ questions and his questioning I have ‘slowed down to speed up.’ How?
By asking the basic four W’s questions always, all ways, before I even think of a ‘why.’

  • Who
  • What
  • When
  • Where 

At Bethany, Jesus is anointed by a  woman with love, with nard perfume. People around him also desire to ‘anoint’ Jesus: their oil, though, is ‘why’ questions, doubting why,

Jesus Anointed at Bethany

14 Now the Passover and the Festival of Unleavened Bread were only two days away, and the chief priests and the teachers of the law were scheming to arrest Jesus secretly and kill him. 2 “But not during the festival,” they said, “or the people may riot.”

3 While he was in Bethany, reclining at the table in the home of Simon the Leper, a woman came with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, made of pure nard. She broke the jar and poured the perfume on his head. 4 Some of those present were saying indignantly to one another, “Why this waste of perfume? 5 It could have been sold for more than a year’s wages and the money given to the poor.” And they rebuked her harshly. 6 “Leave her alone,” said Jesus. “Why are you bothering her? She has done a beautiful thing to me. 7 The poor you will always have with you, and you can help them any time you want. But you will not always have me.8 She did what she could. She poured perfume on my body beforehand to prepare for my burial. 9 Truly I tell you, wherever the gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.”

10 Then Judas Iscariot, one of the Twelve, went to the chief priests to betray Jesus to them. 11 They were delighted to hear this and promised to give him money. So he watched for an opportunity to hand him over.

Angry people, indignant of what they perceive as waste, ‘…they rebuked her harshly.’

How do they rebuke? They ask ‘why’. – ‘Why this waste?’

These people speak directly, harshly, to this anointer. They rush to a judgemental why. they do not pause to ask who she is, see what she is doing. They do not desire to deeply understand where they are with Jesus. Their words purpose to was away her anointing love.

Jesus turns their ‘why’ back onto them, “Why are you bothering her? She has done a beautiful thing to me.

She sees.

Who does she see? Jesus, beautiful Jrsus

Where is she? She is in Simon, the Leper’s house. A healed leper. A restored leper. And she is here, now, with us, ‘wherever the gospel is preached throughout the world ‘ She is here.

What is happening? Jesus is being anointed, blessed by lepers: by me; by us.

When is this anointing? Right before Judas goes to the ‘delighted‘ chief priests to betray Jesus. Judas is promised money, probably temple offerings. Maybe, in part, the Widow’s mite.

She anoints Jesus do i will anoint him with my most precious gift: my words, my acts, my questions. My life.


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