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Why was the Ointment Wasted?

March 19th, 2017 by billclarke

Mark 14:3-9

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Jesus Anointed at Bethany

And while he was at Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, [1] as he was reclining at table, a woman came with an alabaster flask of ointment of pure nard, very costly, and she broke the flask and poured it over his head. There were some who said to themselves indignantly, “Why was the ointment wasted like that? For this ointment could have been sold for more than three hundred denarii [2] and given to the poor.” And they scolded her. But Jesus said, “Leave her alone. Why do you trouble her? She has done a beautiful thing to me. For you always have the poor with you, and whenever you want, you can do good for them. But you will not always have me. She has done what she could; she has anointed my body beforehand for burial. And truly, I say to you, wherever the gospel is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will be told in memory of her.” (ESV)

Footnotes

[1] 14:3 Leprosy was a term for several skin diseases; see Leviticus 13
[2] 14:5 A denarius was a day's wage for a laborer

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