Spotlight

Three characters portray human nature on this Spy Wednesday of Easter week. As the Sanhedrin plotted to kill Jesus, our Lord was in Bethany, in the house of Simon the leper. Spotlighting our first featured guest, we see Mary, who anointed Jesus’ head and feet with costly oil of spikenard while others judged her actions. The disciples were indignant, asking why the oil was not instead sold and the money given to the poor. [John 12:1-8]

Spotlighting our second featured guest, we see Judas Iscariot [Iscariot meaning ‘murderer’ or ‘assassin’], who wanted to keep the money for himself. Indignant, Judas went to the Sanhedrin and offered to humiliate Jesus and deliver Him to them in exchange for 30 pieces of silver: the price for a slave.

Spotlighting our third featured guest, we see Peter, who had claimed loyalty and sacrifice of his own life to prevent Jesus from becoming a prisoner. Jesus rebuked Peter and informed him that he would deny Him three times before the cock crows.

Three guests: Mary, who sacrificially offers all that she has to wash the head and feet of Jesus. Judas, who is offended by her extravagance and motivated by his greed. Peter, who has not come to truly know his own character weaknesses, fears and cowardice.

Jesus sees through our appearances. Though we may sometimes pose as holy and pious, the frailties of the human spirit are reflected in Judas and Peter. We are all capable of avarice, offense, and even murderous slander. We have, probably more than a few times, denied Christ in one way or another. Yet, we witness the contrast of Mary’s sacrifice of all she had laid before Him.

Mary … Judas … Peter …. three dramatic portrayals of humanity. Sacrificially giving Him our all? Offended and denying who He really is? Or posing to be something we are not? Our fallen nature was there on that Wednesday before the Crucifixion. Mary and Peter found humility. Judas was lost. All three characters spotlight our need for resurrection power to transform our human spirit.

 

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