The value you place on Christ will determine how you interact with him. Rob Faucette taught from John 12:1-8 this week and focused on two characters within the story who have very different reactions to the very same event, Mary and Judas. Drawing clear lines between their two perspectives on the value of Christ Rob challenged us with this thought, "It is a beautiful thing when the worth of Jesus and the affections of his followers are in alignment. But it is a dangerous thing when the worth of Jesus and the affection of his followers is out of alignment."
Let's study more together.
Read this from the Bible together:
12 Six days before the Passover, Jesus came to Bethany where Lazarus was, the one Jesus had raised from the dead. 2 So they gave a dinner for him there; Martha was serving them, and Lazarus was one of those reclining at the table with him. 3 Then Mary took a pound of perfume, pure and expensive nard, anointed Jesus’s feet, and wiped his feet with her hair. So the house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume.
4 Then one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot (who was about to betray him), said, 5 “Why wasn’t this perfume sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor?” 6 He didn’t say this because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief. He was in charge of the money-bag and would steal part of what was put in it.
7 Jesus answered, “Leave her alone; she has kept it for the day of my burial. 8 For you always have the poor with you, but you do not always have me.”
Some key statements and questions put forward that are important for us to talk about…
Then Mary took a pound of perfume, pure and expensive nard, anointed Jesus’s feet, and wiped his feet with her hair. Mary held the value of Jesus so high that she wasn't concerned about what it cost her, what it looked like to others, or what people might say about her behavior towards Jesus. Do you relate to Mary's unabashed affection for Jesus? If so, what are some judgements or misconceptions you've suffered as a result? If not, what are some things that might be keeping you from this type of affection?
"Why wasn’t this perfume sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor?” Judas had a very different perspective and value of Jesus than Mary did. Why do you think the one who betrays Jesus is more concerned with financial wastefulness than lavish affection? What does this reveal about his heart?
“Leave her alone; she has kept it for the day of my burial." The perfume that Mary used could have had such a potent scent that Jesus could still smell it as he was preparing for his death. Love as strong as Mary's stuck with our Savior. Why do you think Jesus defended Mary's "waste" instead of Judas' point of "stewardship" in this context?
"Mary valued Jesus and her interactions with Jesus reflected the value she placed on him." In what ways do your interactions with Jesus reflect the value you do or not place on him? What have you "wasted" in love for Jesus lately?
“Judas was picked, given power, and in proximity to Jesus.” Judas had a front row seat to miracles and to Jesus' revolutionary teaching and still betrayed Jesus. How can Judas' identity of "picked, powerful, and in proximity" warn us against "playing church"? Have you ever been tempted to take inventory of your position or popularity in the church and considered that God's stamp of approval?
"You are invited to calculate and consider the cost of following Jesus." Have you ever calculated or considered what it should cost you to follow Jesus? In what ways have you found Jesus to be worth what it has cost? Are there areas of your life where your affection for Jesus isn't in alignment with the worth you say you place on him?