John 12: 1-11 Anointing At Bethany
There are two major differences between the anointing in the Synoptic gospels and that in John: (1) in Mark 14:3-9 and Matthew 26:6-13, the anointing is on the head; in John, on the feet; (2) in Mark and Matthew, the anointing takes place after Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem, just two days before the passion (Mark 14:1); in John, it precedes the entry and takes place six days before the passion (12:1)
In the Old Testament, the king is anointed on the head (cf 1Samuel 10:1); anointing on the feet is for the dead. In Mark and Matthew, Jesus is anointed as the Messiah; but in John it is for Jesus’ burial (v. 7). John (12:12-19) will relate Jesus’ triumphal entry to Jerusalem, symbolic of his resurrection. although he is anointed to his death, he will rise from the dead. The raising of Lazarus from the dead prefigures Jesus’ resurrection.
As we start the Holy Week, let us imitate the humility, devotion and generosity of Mary to serve Jesus. Let us devote more time to prayer as well as to corporal works of mercy, especially to the poorest of the poor, with whom Jesus identifies (ccf Matthew 25:31-45).
Happy Holy Week! Enjoy your Week!
image: ©Pheng Rosello [ a group of graders visited the leper patients at Yangco Ward, Culion Sanitarium and General Hospital, Culion, Palawan, Philippines
reflection ©365 days with the Lord 2017 , St. Pauls publication