Summary: In the Gospels we see two separate but distinct accounts of Jesus being anointed by women. Today let's take a look at the reactions of the Pharisees, the disciples and the "anointers" and see how we measure up.

Please stand and repeat with me our current memory verse ...

2 Timothy 2:11-13

“Here is a trustworthy saying: If we died with Him, we will also live with Him; if we endure, we will also reign with Him. If we disown Him, He will also disown us; if we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot disown


And, our memory refresher verse for this week is ...

Romans 10:9-10 (NLT)

“If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.

“For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved.”

You may be seated.

Please open your Bibles to Luke 7:36-50 which we will read in a few minutes.

Today I want to read two passages about similar events.

Both of the events revolve around the anointing of Jesus with nard, an expensive perfume, from a sealed bottle made out of alabaster.

With that in mind let’s go ahead and read Luke 7:36-50

OK, now, let’s turn over in our Bibles to John 12:1-8

This account is of the same event that is recorded in Matthew 26 and Mark 14.

These are all similar because they all take place in Bethany where Lazarus, Martha and Mary lived.

In these three accountings of the event the disciples are there but there is no mention of any Pharisees being there.

With that in mind let’s go ahead and read John 12:1-8

In the three accounts from Matthew, Mark and John, Mary is either mentioned directly or it is assumed that it is Mary because Jesus would spend time at their home when He was in Bethany.

In the account in Luke the woman is described as there is no mention of the town at all.

------- The three groups of people -------

So, we see in these two similar accounts three groups of people; the anointers, the disciples and the Pharisees and they are all coming from various perspectives.

The Pharisees see themselves as superior to Jesus and they are threatened that He will actually talk back to them. They were NOT used to that. Sure they had their theological disagreements with the Scribes and other teachers of the law but they were not used to being chastised in public.

To the Pharisees Jesus is some kind of an upstart.

They were used to getting all of the attention; when they spoke, people listened.

Now people are listening to this Jesus guy!

One thing that needs to be clear here is that Jesus was NOT a Pharisee; He was a Rabbi. But in their eyes He was a young, untrained Rabbi with at ragtag group of followers; fishermen, tax collectors and rebels.

And, in the event recorded in Luke Jesus has been invited to dinner by a Pharisee.

We don’t know why; perhaps the guy was just trying to figure Him out.

The second group of people we see are the disciples. They are at the dinner given in Jesus’ honor in the town of Bethany. They are looking for the Messiah. Not the suffering Messiah but the conquering Messiah.

They were just common people with a common future ahead of them until Jesus came along. Now they were in the inner circle of people who would be there when Jesus delivered Israel from Roman domination.

Finally, there were the anointers; Mary the sister of Martha and Lazarus and the “sinful woman”.

Both of these women were devout. But devout is not even a strong enough word.

Neither of them were invited to the dinner but they were driven to go out of their passion for the Lord.


What is the crisis in each of these events?

A woman comes into the dinner with a treasure worth roughly $49,274 which was the average yearly wage in the US in 2017. Then she breaks the jar and pours the perfume out on Jesus and actually, she lets down her hair (horror of horrors!) and physically touches Him!

I tried to come up with a “what if someone walked in here and did such and such” a scenario that would be the equivalent of what these women did but I couldn’t think of one. I tried to think of something that would evoke the same intensity of reaction that this event brought about, but I couldn’t think of anything. Sorry …


So, what was the response to these crises?

The response of the Pharisees …

They are analyzing Jesus!

“If this Man were a prophet … He would know that she is a sinner!”

He is letting that sinner touch Him!

The response of the disciples …

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