Day 45

Wednesday: Jesus Is Anointed for Burial



Mark 14:3-11, Matthew 26:14-16, Luke 22:3-6, Zechariah 11:12-13

BY Guest Writer

Scripture Reading: Mark 14:3-11, Matthew 26:14-16, Luke 22:3-6, Zechariah 11:12-13

I have always found sacrificing comes easily for me. It is the keeping of a good thing that feels so tenuous. I am always positive God is going to ask for the precious things, the most precious things, and so before I can be disappointed by their abrupt departure, I toss them into what I perceive to be His hands. Take my life, take all I am and all I will be, all I have and will have, is my oft-whispered prayer. This exercise, though, is less noble than it sounds at first—more the actions of a pauper unaccustomed to God’s goodness than a daughter of the Most High God.

What does it mean to hold on to a thing until the act of pouring it out is actually noble, actually costly? Even if the thing itself is held dear or is worth much, what does it mean to reserve it for the essence of its purpose instead of wasting it in dribbles and drops like a careless child carrying a cup of milk? How do we know what the difference between wasting a thing and pouring out a thing is, especially when they look so much the same?

The answer to all of these questions lies not in the vial of costly perfume nor the woman in this story, but in the Man over whose head she poured herself: Jesus, the perfect, all-sufficient, timely sacrifice, the one of greatest cost, greatest worth, and greatest value, pouring Himself out over the soon to die, decaying flesh of humankind.

This act of nobility Jesus pointed to was to redirect the incredulous gaze of the disciples for whom nobility looked like the rule and reign of an earthly king. Jesus wanted to show, once again, that nobility in the kingdom of heaven was the opposite of the expected norms. This broken woman pouring her broken flask over the soon to be broken body of her Savior—this is the way of the kingdom of God, Jesus was saying. Hers is a true act of generosity. She has done a noble thing for me,” He tells them (Mark 14:6).

God saved His precious expression of Himself in flesh for the most opportune moment, the best moment. He saved the costliest offering for the moment of maximum impact. The Bible says, “At the right time Christ died for the ungodly” (Romans 5:6). As this woman poured her alabaster flask over the head of her Savior, we are shown a picture of the emptying of a good thing for the best one, the greatest exchange: Christ’s death for our life.

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Lore Ferguson Wilbert is a writer, thinker, and learner. She blogs at Sayable, and tweets and instagrams at @lorewilbert. She has a husband named Nate, a puppy named Harper Nelle, and too many books to read in one lifetime.

Post Comments (66)

66 thoughts on "Wednesday: Jesus Is Anointed for Burial"

  1. Rachel says:

    many years ago I had several spiritual experiences. One of them was experiencing HIS presence. It happened twice. How do I know? There was a very strong fragrance that i smelt and I was told by church friends that, it was the “Fragrance of Christ”. I often wondered since then the “how”, “why” of this “Fragrance”. Reading this passage today, I now know the answers to the “how” and “why” – it was the perfume that was poured over Jesus before he died and as Marlaena Guenther have commented earlier, “this lovely scent would have carried with HIM for a long time” Thank You for this new discovery :))

  2. Sabrina Michelle says:

    Lord, I admire this lady and it is my desire to be so attentive to you in the same manner. With all the distractions around me, I want to remain focused on you. I’m so thankful for the Holy Spirit and keeping me grounded.❤️❤️

    1. Jessica McCreary says:

      Sabrina I couldn’t agree with you more!!!

  3. Marlaena Guenther says:

    I love how this perfume is used to anoint Jesus for burial. This lovely scent would have carried with him for a long time, a reminder of Mary’s sacrifice and love for him. If this was Wednesday, and he died and was buried two days later, don’t you think an entire bottle of expensive perfume would have remained engrained in his skin through most of that time? Especially since they didn’t bathe regularly in those days?

    1. Julie Waldvogel says:

      I would think so. Will have to look into that. But what a reminder that would have been for everyone.

    2. Rachel says:

      Agree with you Marlaena. I experienced HIS presence before and has smelt HIS fragrance twice before so far :))

  4. Deborah Gee says:

    The verses from Mark 14 always remind me of a beautiful old song by CeCe Winans called Alabaster Box. A song of thanksgiving for Jesus’ sacrifice.

  5. Mary Abel says:

    Let me be so timely in my service for Him.

    1. julie says:

      Well said! Amen!

  6. Amy E. says:

    “It’s a beautiful thing when the worth of Jesus and the love of His followers match.” -John Piper

  7. Mari says:

    Thank you all for praying for me yesterday. For the most part all went to my favor however we have another court date May 1. For now I am thankful for all of you, all the godly women around me that are praying and of course my God who is giving me the strength to endure. I hope to look back one day knowing that this was for a purpose. I felt strong and and that’s only because of all you praying for me.

    1. KimN says:

      Thank you for the update Mari. Thankful for His strength and goodness that are with you always! This journey may be uncomfortable and heartbreaking but if you continue to trust Him there WILL be something beautiful on the other side. I continue to pray for you and your beautiful family!

    2. Churchmouse says:

      Prayers for strength, wisdom and peace will continue

  8. J says:

    This message today was like a love dagger straight to my heart. I have been SO stuck in a place of trusting God with my tithes and offerings, but simply always expecting to continue to be stuck. It’s a rut of stuckness and financial oppression that I put myself in. Yuck! This is not what God has planned for me as his daughter! I don’t have to push my portion to God and expect struggle with the rest. I GET to partake in his kingdom. I GET to bless others through the release of his goodness. Finally I get the greatest riches, his tangible and irreplaceable reckless love. Thank you lord!

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