Day 4

Wednesday – Jesus Anointed with Perfume

On the Wednesday of Holy Week, Jesus was once again at the temple, this time engaging in debates with religious leaders—or more specifically, calling them out for their hypocrisy. He regularly pointed out how some of these priests were great at reciting laws and rituals, but not so great at loving their neighbors.

This Wednesday is also known as Spy Wednesday. According to the gospel writers, this was the day Judas Iscariot, one of Jesus’s disciples, went to religious leaders and basically agreed for 30 pieces of silver to make it easy for them to capture Jesus. This betrayal set the wheels in motion for what was going to happen over the weekend.

That night, when Jesus went back to the town of Bethany for the evening, he tried to set his friends up for what was about to happen: He was getting ready to die. This is from the Gospel of Matthew 26:6–13.

While Jesus was in Bethany in the home of Simon the Leper, a woman came to him with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, which she poured on his head as he was reclining at the table.

When the disciples saw this, they were indignant. “Why this waste?” they asked. “This perfume could have been sold at a high price and the money given to the poor.”

Aware of this, Jesus said to them, “Why are you bothering this woman? She has done a beautiful thing to me. The poor you will always have with you, but you will not always have me. When she poured this perfume on my body, she did it to prepare me for burial. Truly I tell you, wherever this gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.” 

Heavenly Father, like the woman in this story, we have our own offerings we can give you. We offer our time, our abilities, and our resources to you, knowing that you can use all those things to help people know you better. Help us to follow her example in giving all that we have from a heart of gratitude to you. Amen.

No in-person services on Sunday, May 26.