Sharing Our Faith Together

Holy Week 2022 - 1. Tension!

by Andy Cokayne 11 April 2022

Reading : John 12 v 1-11

Welcome to the first of a series of Holy Week reflections for this year. They have been prepared by Andy Cokayne and Peter Blount, two Methodist Local Preachers, who are part of our church fellowship.

In Luke 10 we read the account of Martha opening her home to Jesus, and her sister Mary. Martha the one rushing around getting things prepared, as a true host, while Mary sat at Jesus feet listening to his teaching. Here we meet the sisters again, and their brother Lazarus. Martha served (v2) while Mary, got a very expensive bottle of perfume, opened it and poured it on Jesus feet and wiped his feet with her hair (v3). While Jesus, especially at this critical time, wanted unity between his followers. Yet again you sense tension between the sisters, Martha the practical one tended to their guests. While Mary sat at his feet and performed an extravagant action with the perfume.
Jesus, in John chapter 10 had raised Lazarus from the dead, and by so doing showed that he had power over death, the last great hold the Devil had over us. Death had been defeated, and this had not gone unnoticed as crowds came to hear Jesus, but also to see Lazarus (v9), the one who had come back from the dead.
What tension this must have caused. On the one hand you have the joy of Jesus demonstrating he had power over death; and as a consequence the joy of seeing many coming to put their faith in him. Yet on the other hand to know that his own arrest, trial, torture, and horrific death were now fast approaching. Jesus knew precisely what was ahead. Yet willingly he walked that road of sacrifice. What Love.

Song : Jesus Christ I think upon your sacrifice

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Father God we rejoice that you hold all things in tension. The joy of knowing that the devil has no power over your Son Jesus; that death will be defeated, yet knowing the horror of his torture and barbaric death. The love that you have for us, in giving us free will, and yet knowing the harm we often cause ourselves and others in expressing that free will. Thank you Father that despite everything you demonstrate to us in Jesus, that your love for us knows no limits. In Jesus name we pray. Amen.