King's Business - 1915-04



rest of the disciples. Her act was looked upon with suspicion and some very wise criticisms were made upon it. Judas Is­ cariot was the leader in the harsh crit­ icisms (John 12:4-6). The Iscariots usu­ ally are the leaders in criticising the acts of others. But the whole Apostolic com­ pany were carried away by the bad spirit of- Judas (v. 8). Censorious criticism is more contagious than smallpox. Envy lay at the bottom of the criticism. They could not understand Mary’s act, not because it was below them, but because it was above them. The disciples regarded this use of the exceedingly precious ointment as a “waste” -(v. 8) ; that speaks very poorly for their love of Jesus and their estimation of Him. But there are always those who think money spent on Jesus “wasted.” To salve their own consciences they suggested the poor as those to whom the money could be given. There are plenty of those today who never give their own money to the poor but who are willing to criticise others for not giving theirs. Jesus praised when His disciples criticised. Mary wa,s not looking for fame when she performed this act but she got fame immortal. Jesus be­ stowed such commendation upon her as was bestowed upon no other and His won­ derful prediction concerning her has been literally fulfilled (v. 13). Mary had satis­ fied the Saviour’s heart. She just poured out her heart’s adoration—she worshiped. Martha was in part taken up with her ser­ vice ; Lazarus was in part taken up with his enjoyment, but Mary was wholly taken up with Jesus Himself. Judas was stung to the quick by the gentle rebuke of Jesus. He hurries to Jesus’ enemies to strike a bargain with them for the betrayal of his Lord. He seeks to get back part of the money he had lost by Mary’s not putting the 300 pieces into the bag (cf. John 12:4-6). He comes in upon the chief priests just as they are plotting Jesus’ destruction (cf. vs. 1-5) and Monday, April 26. Matt. 26:14-16.

Passover. The Jewish plot to arrest and kill Jesus and the anointing of Jesus which occurred four days, earlier are put together in Matthew’s account because the anger of Judas Iscariot at Mary and at our Lord was the incident that led immediately to the betrayal of our Lord by Judas to his Jewish enemies (vs. 14-16; John 12:1-8). We have in these five verses an awful pic­ ture of the blackness of the human heart and the lengths of iniquity to which it can go. These chief priests and Scribes and elders of the people were the religious lead­ ers of God’s chosen people. Doubtless, they represented in many respects the very best there was among the people and yet they deliberately planned the assassination of the Son of God. Here we have one of the countless illustrations in the Bible, as well as in secular history, of the deceitfulness and desperate wickedness of the unregen­ erate heart, and the human heart is riot es­ sentially different today, and there is no hope for anyone no matter what his breed­ ing, his culture or his religiosity unless he be born again (cf. John 3:3-7). There was no one else at the anointing at Bethany who brought such joy to the aching heart of Jesus as did Mary. She above all others had listened to Him and understood Him, believed Him and loved Him. Out of thi'wealth of her love, she had purchased at a cost of $51 (a large sum in those days—her whole treasure) an ala- bastar cruse of ointment and put it aside to use upon Him when the proper moment came (John 12:7). She had understood what none of the rest had, that He was actually to die arid be buried (v. 12). She had not sat at His feet in vain (cf. Luke 10:39). Mary had not stopped to calculate the cost of the ointment, and whether she had not better save part of her money for future needs. Love never calculates, it gives all. Mary’s uncalculating love of Jesus proved a safer guide of conduct than the calculating prudence of Judas and the Sunday, April 25. Matt. 26:6-13.

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