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Bible Pathways - October 19, 2005

October 19


Read Mark 14

In Today's Reading:

Jesus' last Passover; Gethsemane; Peter's denial; Jesus before Pilate; Jesus' crucifixion, burial, resurrection, and ascension

Simon, a leper who had been healed by Jesus, lived in Bethany, a small town less than two miles southeast of Jerusalem on the slope of the Mount of Olives. Just a few days before Jesus was crucified, Simon invited Him and the apostles to his home for supper. As they sat eating, there came a woman (Mary) having an alabaster box of ointment of spikenard (perfume) very precious (costly); and she brake the box, and poured it on His head (Mark 14:3; also Matthew 26:6-13; John 12:1-8).

This ointment of spikenard was valued at more than 300 pence — about a year's wages for a common laborer (Mark 14:5; Matthew 20:2). John records that it was Judas who spoke up, saying: Why was not this ointment sold . . . and given to the poor? This he said, not that he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and had the bag (money purse), and bare what was put therein (John 12:5-6). To Judas, anything that was poured out upon Jesus was wasted; he coveted the money that the ointment might have brought. Jesus replied: Let her alone: against the day of My burying hath she kept this. For the poor always ye have with you; but Me ye have not always (12:7-8).

The lost opportunity to sell the ointment and pocket the money, coupled with the strong rebuke from Jesus and the great honor bestowed upon Mary, probably angered Judas, who then went unto the chief priests (Mark 14:10). Judas' purpose in accepting Jesus' call to be one of the 12 apostles became clear when he said to the chief priests: What will ye give me, and I will deliver Him unto you? (Matthew 26:15-16). When they heard it, they were glad, and promised to give him money (Mark 14:11). The betrayal, and even the amount paid to Judas, had been foretold by one of the Lord's prophets 600 years earlier: I said unto them . . . give me my price. . . . So they weighed for my price thirty pieces of silver (Zechariah 11:12).

Our generation is no different than the one in the time of Jesus. Human nature remains the same. Every person must make the personal choice whether to accept or to reject Jesus as Savior and Lord of his life. The question asked by Pilate must still be answered by everyone: What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ? (Matthew 27:22).

Word Studies:

14:31 spake the more vehemently = protested emphatically; 14:65 buffet him = hit Him with their fists; 15:15 scourged = whipped, flogged; 15:38 twain = two; 16:16 damned = condemned to eternal hell.

Cross References:

For Mark 14:27: See Zechariah 13:7. Mark 14:62: See Psalm 110:1; Daniel 7:13. Mark 15:24: See Psalm 22:18. Mark 15:28: See Isaiah 53:12. Mark 15:29: See Psalm 22:7-8. Mark 15:34: See Psalm 22:1. Mark 16:19: See Psalm 110:1.

Prayer Needs:

Pray for The English International Shortwave Radio Broadcast sponsored by Mrs. Lydia Hemans · Staff: Rebecca Hahn · Country: South Korea (47 million) in northeastern Asia · Major languages: Korean and English · Religious freedom · 33% Buddhist; 24% Protestant; 22% Confucianism and other eastern religions; 4% Roman Catholic · Prayer Suggestion: Glorify God who is able to use national leaders to accomplish His purposes (Ezra 7:27-28).

Memory Verse for the Week: Hebrews 3:13

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