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Humble Hero

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    Why Judas Was Annoyed

    Judas witnessed this act with great displeasure. He began to whisper his complaints to those near him, blaming Christ for allowing such waste. Judas, the treasurer for the disciples, had secretly taken funds for his own use from their little supply of money, in this way reducing their resources to almost nothing. He was eager to put into the moneybag all that he could get. When one of their group bought something that he did not think was essential, he would say, “Why was not the cost of this put into the bag that I carry for the poor?”HH 258.2

    Mary’s act was in such dramatic contrast to his selfishness that he was put to shame. He tried to claim a worthy motive for objecting to her gift: “‘Why was this fragrant oil not sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor?’ This he said, not that he cared for the poor, but because he was a thief.” If Mary’s ointment had been sold and the proceeds come into his possession, the poor would have received no benefit.HH 258.3

    As a financier, Judas thought of himself as far above his fellow disciples, and he had gained a strong influence over them. His professed sympathy for the poor deceived them. The murmur went round the table, “Why this waste? For this fragrant oil might have been sold for much and given to the poor.”HH 258.4

    Mary heard the criticism. Her heart trembled within her. She was afraid that her sister would criticize her for extravagance. The Master, too, might think her wasteful. She was about to shrink away, when she heard the voice of her Lord, “Let her alone. Why do you trouble her?” He knew that in this act she had expressed her gratitude for the forgiveness of her sins. Lifting His voice above the rumblings of criticism, He said, “She has done a good work for Me. For you have the poor with you always, and whenever you wish you may do them good; but Me you do not have always. She has done what she could. She has come beforehand to anoint My body for burial.”HH 258.5

    The fragrant gift that Mary had thought to lavish on the dead body of the Savior she poured on His living form. At His burial its sweetness could only have filled the tomb; now it gladdened His heart. She was pouring out her love while the Savior was conscious of her devotion, even as she was anointing Him for the burial. When He went down into the darkness of His great trial, He carried with Him the memory of that deed, a foretaste of the love that would be His from His redeemed ones forever.HH 258.6

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