The Anointing, Part 3

John 12:2-8

Now, we finish out our look at this wonderful story of the anointing of Jesus prior to his death…

What details does John bring to the table?

  1. We have the name of the woman who anointed the Lord: Mary.  Not Mary his mother, but Mary the sister of Lazarus, who had seen the Lord raise her brother from the dead.
  2. We have the detail that Judas “complained” about the extravagance of Mary’s gift of oil – not because he really cared for the poor – but because he was a thief who was in the habit of tapping into the disciple’s funds whenever it suited him.

And in those two details – you have an encapsulation of the problem – good and evil – love and hate – generosity and selfishness – the devil’s way – and God’s.

In short, you have the reason Jesus came to this earth.

He came to provide – to be – the Way out.

He came to destroy evil – and replace it with resurrected, everlasting love.

This coming week, we will remember the story again.  The triumphant entry into Jerusalem, the plot against Jesus, the candlelit supper with his closest friends, the betrayal, the death – and finally, thankfully – the victorious resurrection.  Easter.

It is an old, old story.  It is one people of faith know well.

May we remember how Mary anointed Jesus for his death, loved him so deeply, just as Jesus loved us to the end of his earthly life and beyond.


By Paul Simrell

The Reverend Paul W. Simrell has served for over thirty years in a variety of congregational and institutional settings. He is a recognized minister with standing in the Virginia region of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada and is nationally endorsed by the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) for specialized ministry in both pastoral counseling and chaplaincy. Ordained in 1982, he has served congregations in Kentucky, Texas, Florida, and Virginia. He currently serves as the pastor of Elpis Christian Church, a small, historic congregation located just a few miles west of Richmond, Virginia. Elpis is the Greek word meaning “expectant hope.” He also serves on the associate clinical staff of the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care, Richmond, Virginia, both as a pastoral counselor and a ministerial assessment specialist, specializing in executive, clergy and relationship coaching. He is a graduate of the University of Florida and Lexington Theological Seminary and has done advanced clinical training in chaplaincy and pastoral counseling at the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington, Kentucky, Children’s Medical Center and Parkland Hospital in Dallas, Texas and the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care in Richmond, Virginia. He is a Certified Pastoral Counselor, an ACPE Practitioner, and a member of the American Association of Christian Counselors. He is a Certified Facilitator of the Prepare-Enrich relationship assessment and skills-building program and served as a volunteer chaplain for over twenty years with the CJW Medical Center campuses in Richmond, Virginia. His avocational interests include playing the piano and drawing. He is very happily married to his wife Elizabeth Yeamans Simrell, a free-lance writer, who is also a Certified Facilitator for the Prepare-Enrich program. Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

Leave a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: