A Message from...
Win Jones | Isaiah 42:1-9, Hebrews 9:11-15, John 12:1-11
In John 12: 1-3 we see Jesus going to visit Lazarus and his sisters Mary and Martha. This is at least the third time that Jesus has visited them, and scripture makes it plain that Jesus loved them. They made a supper, and Martha served the meal. In Luke 10: 39-42, we see Jesus visiting Mary and Martha, and Martha was preparing and serving the meal. In John 11:20, we see Jesus coming to the house to raise Lazarus from the dead. Martha ran out to meet Him, while Mary was in the house.
Do you see a pattern? Martha is compelled to do things. Mary, however, is content to sit at Jesus' feet and listen to him. She worships him by pouring oil on His feet and wiping it with her hair.
I must confess, I am too much like Martha. I want to be doing something. I want to give God a hand, to take care of the small stuff (like my life) while He concentrates on the big stuff (like world peace). You might say, I want to earn my stripes with God.
However, that is not the way it works. All my efforts are “filthy rags” when done in my own strength and done by my plan. I can do nothing. It is only God, by His Spirit, leading and empowering me, that I can accomplish anything of lasting significance. Anything else is nothing more than my seeking my own glory. In Isaiah 42:8, God says “I am the Lord; that is my name; my glory I give to no other...”
Oh Lord, take away my inclination for busyness and let me learn to rest in You. To truly listen to You. To worship You. To be led by Your Spirit. Then my works will not be for my glory, but for Yours.
Isaiah 42:1-9 | The servant brings forth justice
Behold my servant, whom I uphold, my chosen, in whom my soul delights; I have put my Spirit upon him; he will bring forth justice to the nations. 2 He will not cry aloud or lift up his voice, or make it heard in the street; 3 a bruised reed he will not break, and a faintly burning wick he will not quench; he will faithfully bring forth justice. 4 He will not grow faint or be discouraged till he has established justice in the earth; and the coastlands wait for his law. 5 Thus says God, the LORD, who created the heavens and stretched them out, who spread out the earth and what comes from it, who gives breath to the people on it and spirit to those who walk in it: 6 "I am the LORD; I have called you in righteousness; I will take you by the hand and keep you; I will give you as a covenant for the people, a light for the nations, 7 to open the eyes that are blind, to bring out the prisoners from the dungeon, from the prison those who sit in darkness. 8 I am the LORD; that is my name; my glory I give to no other, nor my praise to carved idols. 9 Behold, the former things have come to pass, and new things I now declare; before they spring forth I tell you of them."
Hebrews 9:11-15 | The blood of Christ redeems for eternal life
But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things that have come, then through the greater and more perfect tent (not made with hands, that is, not of this creation) 12 he entered once for all into the holy places, not by means of the blood of goats and calves but by means of his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption. 13 For if the blood of goats and bulls, and the sprinkling of defiled persons with the ashes of a heifer, sanctify for the purification of the flesh, 14 how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, purify our conscience from dead works to serve the living God. 15 Therefore he is the mediator of a new covenant, so that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance, since a death has occurred that redeems them from the transgressions committed under the first covenant.
John 12:1-11 | Mary of Bethany anoints Jesus
Six days before the Passover, Jesus therefore came to Bethany, where Lazarus was, whom Jesus had raised from the dead. 2 So they gave a dinner for him there. Martha served, and Lazarus was one of those reclining with him at table. 3 Mary therefore took a pound of expensive ointment made from pure nard, and anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped his feet with her hair. The house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume. 4 But Judas Iscariot, one of his disciples (he who was about to betray him), said, 5 "Why was this ointment not sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor?" 6 He said this, not because he cared about the poor, but because he was a thief, and having charge of the moneybag he used to help himself to what was put into it. 7 Jesus said, "Leave her alone, so that she may keep it for the day of my burial. 8 For the poor you always have with you, but you do not always have me." 9 When the large crowd of the Jews learned that Jesus was there, they came, not only on account of him but also to see Lazarus, whom he had raised from the dead. 10 So the chief priests made plans to put Lazarus to death as well, 11 because on account of him many of the Jews were going away and believing in Jesus.