John 12:1-11 Jesus Anointed at Bethany


Prayer and Praise

Jesus said, “Couldn’t you men keep watch with me for one hour?” Matthew 26:40, so we start our journey of giving God time to work in us, by praying along with this hymn… “Good on the Salvation Army” sung by Cliff Richard…


John 12:1-11 Jesus Anointed at Bethany (N.I.V.)

1 Six days before the Passover, Jesus came to Bethany, where Lazarus lived, whom Jesus had raised from the dead. 2 Here a dinner was given in Jesus’ honor. Martha served, while Lazarus was among those reclining at the table with him. 

A thank you party is laid on for Jesus by Mary and Martha, for raising Lazarus from the dead. It was here that Mary publicly poured one of the most expensive perfumes available over Jesus’ feet, and then drying His feet with her hair. 

3 Then Mary took about a pint of pure nard, an expensive perfume; she poured it on Jesus’ feet and wiped his feet with her hair. And the house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume. 

4 But one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, who was later to betray him, objected, 5 “Why wasn’t this perfume sold and the money given to the poor? It was worth a year’s wages.” 

6 He did not say this because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief; as keeper of the money bag, he used to help himself to what was put into it.

7 “Leave her alone,” Jesus replied. “It was intended that she should save this perfume for the day of my burial. 8 You will always have the poor among you, but you will not always have me.” 

Jesus knew the time had come when He would be sacrificed for the sins of the people and that God intended this moment of body preparation. Judas’ complaint was not even genuine as he wanted to put the money in his own piggy bank. 

9 Meanwhile a large crowd of Jews found out that Jesus was there and came, not only because of him but also to see Lazarus, whom he had raised from the dead. 

People wanted to see the evidence with their own eyes – that Lazarus had returned to the land of the living. Because that caused many more to believe, the religious leaders schemed to kill Lazarus as well as Jesus. 

10 So the chief priests made plans to kill Lazarus as well, 11 for on account of him many of the Jews were going over to Jesus and believing in him. (NIV).


It was the religious leaders who tried to get in the way of Jesus’ message. They had a stony heart even when they saw that Lazarus had been raised from the dead. Murder was in their hearts.

  • Today’s Verse… who is Jesus? 

John 12:1-11 Jesus replied. “It was intended that she should save this perfume for the day of my burial.” 

  • Today’s Challenge

Notice that the people with the hearts that responded to God were the laypeople. 

When William Booth, who founded the Salvation Army, died, 150,000 members of the general public lined the route where the coffin passed by, just to farewell him. General Booth’s example showed Jesus Christ.

Our reaction to Jesus will decide our future too…

Prayer and Worship

“… He went up on a mountainside by himself to pray.” Matthew 14:23. 

Jesus taught His disciples what we call ‘The Lord’s Prayer’; (Luke 11).

Listen here to Albert Malotte’s ‘The Lord’s Prayer’. 

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy Name, 

thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. 

Give us this day our daily bread. 

And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. 

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. 

For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever;- Amen.

Prayer suggestions;-

  1. The world. (ie ‘For those in authority.’)
  2. The ‘suffering church.’
  3. Your own situation. (Suggest ‘needs’ rather than ‘wants’.)

Second Reading

John 12:1-11 Complete Jewish Bible

12 Six days before Pesach, Yeshua came to Beit-Anyah, where El‘azar lived, the man Yeshua had raised from the dead; so they gave a dinner there in his honor. Marta served the meal, and El‘azar was among those at the table with him. Miryam took a whole pint of pure oil of spikenard, which is very expensive, poured it on Yeshua’s feet and wiped his feet with her hair, so that the house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume. But one of the talmidim, Y’hudah from K’riot, the one who was about to betray him, said, “This perfume is worth a year’s wages! Why wasn’t it sold and the money given to the poor?” Now he said this not out of concern for the poor, but because he was a thief — he was in charge of the common purse and used to steal from it. Yeshua said, “Leave her alone! She kept this for the day of my burial. You always have the poor among you, but you will not always have me.”

A large crowd of Judeans learned that he was there; and they came not only because of Yeshua, but also so that they could see El‘azar, whom he had raised from the dead. 10 The head cohanim then decided to do away with El‘azar too, 11 since it was because of him that large numbers of the Judeans were leaving their leaders and putting their trust in Yeshua.

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