Suggested further reading: Hebrews 6:9-12
What honour Christ loves to put on those that honour him!
The woman who poured a box of precious ointment on him did it
no doubt out of reverence and affection for him. She had received
soul benefit from him and she considered no mark of honour too costly
to bestow on him in return. But this deed of hers called forth
disapprobation from some who saw it. They called it `waste'. They said
it might have been better to sell the ointment and give the money to
the poor. At once our Lord rebuked these cold-hearted fault-finders.
He commended the woman and accepted her work and approved of
it. Then he made his striking prediction about her action (v. 13).
We see in this little incident how perfectly our Lord knew
things to come and how easy it is for him to confer honour. The
prophecy concerning this woman is fulfilled before our very eyes.
Wherever the Gospel of Matthew is read the deed that she did is known.
The deeds and titles of many a king, emperor and general are as
completely forgotten as if written in the sand. But the grateful act of
this one humble Christian woman is recorded in Bibles in hundreds
of languages all over the globe. The praise of man is but for a
few days; the praise of Christ endureth for ever. The pathway to
lasting honour is to honour Christ.
We see in this incident a blessed foretaste of things that will
yet take place in the Day of Judgement. In that great day no
honour done to Christ on earth shall be found to have been forgotten.
The speeches of orators, the exploits of warriors, the works of poets
and painters shall not be mentioned in that day. But the least work of
the least Christian done for Christ or his members shall be found
written in a book of everlasting remembrance. Not a single kind word
or deed, not a cup of cold water or a box of ointment shall be
omitted from the record. Men Maycall sacrifices for Christ's sake
`waste' waste of time, waste of money, waste of strength. But the eye
of Christ is on us. He notes these things and is well pleased. Let
us continue in them (1 Cor. 15:58).
For meditation: When our Christian service is not appreciated
by men let us remember that it is not done for them but for Christ.
He appreciates it.