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Why This Waste?

Why This Waste?

And when Jesus was in Bethany at the house of Simon the leper, a woman came to Him having an alabaster flask of very costly fragrant oil, and she poured it on His head as He sat at the table. But when His disciples saw it, they were indignant, saying, "Why this waste? For this fragrant oil might have been sold for much and given to the poor." Matthew 26:6-9 (NKJV)

When Mary, the sister of Lazarus broke open an expensive bottle of perfume, it drew controversy.  Spices and ointments were quite costly because they had to be imported. Mary's offering was valued at approximately a year's wages for an ordinary working person. Mary had given this perfume as a gift to show her love and appreciation to Jesus for raising her brother from the dead. Mary poured out the perfume upon Jesus' head and then proceeded to wipe His feet with her hair (John 12:3).

Her act of worship showed how much respect she had for her Lord as the expensive perfume filled their home with a sweet fragrance. But there were some in attendance that did not understand or agree with Mary.  Judas, who would eventually betray Jesus was one of them and he protested her act as one of waste, stating the money could have been better used for those in need (John 12:4-5).

Some reading this story might find themselves agreeing with Judas - after all there were many who needed money for food and other provisions. The fact is some would argue that we're probably wasting our time and resources when we give our tithes of money to the church because there are many in need. But this would be a distortion of the truth by the father of lies - Satan.

We must understand, we were created to Glorify our Lord and Savior, Jesus.  And this starts with each one of us personally identifying who He is, and what He has done for us. When we understand this fully it will result in our worshipping Him in everything we do, everything we say, and with every goal that we aspire to accomplish.

Mary knew what she was doing when she took those precious resources and poured out her worship offering, and it was not a waste.  Jesus knew this too, and He made a promise to her that day - a promise that has come true for centuries, and it is happening again as you read this devotional.

"Assuredly, I say to you, wherever this Gospel is preached in the whole world, what this woman has done will also be told as a memorial to her." Matthew 26:13 (NKJV)

I want to encourage you to pray about this message and to ask the Lord to show you how to use everything that you possess to glorify Him and the Kingdom of God.  Whether its your money, time, talent, possessions, or whatever it may be - God can use it if you will simply let Him. 

Also know this - God will provide for those less fortunate who are in need. It may even be through you - but it will always be Him providing.  He finds the perfect way and He will use many different conduits to bring forth what's needed.  He will provide for all who seek Him and call Him Lord.  Remember also, it is not our job to be God, only He can do this.  Our responsibility is to be open when He calls us to be that person who is to give, and to be obedient in giving that in which was given to us.

STUDY QUESTION: What are the different responses to the form of worship that Mary used with Jesus in these verses?

PERSONAL INVENTORY:  Have you found yourself being critical of the way someone worships Jesus?  Have others found your form of worship to be a waste in their view?

APPLICATION: Make everything you do a form of worship unto the Lord.  When we do this, we know that our life is being used in a way that brings glory to Him.  Don't be swayed by popular opinion or fleshly logic.

Father, thank You for Your Word and the valuable lessons that are derived from reading it.  May the things I do this day be a form of worship acceptable and pleasing to You.  In Jesus' precious name, amen...

Be Blessed, Pastor Scott

Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000