John 12:1-5
John 12:1 (KJB)
Then Jesus six days before the passover came to Bethany, where Lazarus was which had been dead, whom he raised from the dead.
Jesus had now left the town of Ephraim after taking a respite from all the confrontation. Jesus now re-enters Judaea and goes to Bethany. At this point He is about a week from the cross. Jesus knew full what was ahead this coming week and He walked toward Jerusalem with that full knowledge. This verse connects Lazarus with Bethany by straightly stating that Lazarus was dead but Jesus raised him from the dead. God is emphasizing the fact that Lazarus was dead and was raised from that state of death.
John 12:2 (KJB)
There they made him a supper; and Martha served: but Lazarus was one of them that sat at the table with him.
As we can see that things were basically back to normal where they served Jesus supper and it was Martha who did the serving. A principle in this verse teaches us that when Jesus is involved in the lives of His children or in a situation, then stability comes into their lives. As we can see that Lazarus was at the table with Jesus and Martha served, just like she probably did before the death of Lazarus. Now this was at the home of Simon the Leper according to Matthew. (Mat 26:6 KJV) Now when Jesus was in Bethany, in the house of Simon the leper, So Simon may have invited them to his home and Martha probably volunteered to cook the dinner. No doubt Simon wanted to see Lazarus for himself and invited the whole family.
John 12:3 (KJB)
Then took Mary a pound of ointment of spikenard, very costly, and anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped his feet with her hair: and the house was filled with the odour of the ointment.
Mary had taken a pound of spikenard and anointed the head and feet of Jesus according to the other accounts. (Mat 26:7 KJV) There came unto him a woman having an alabaster box of very precious ointment, and poured it on his head, as he sat at meat. (Mark 14:3 KJV) And being in Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, as he sat at meat, there came a woman having an alabaster box of ointment of spikenard very precious; and she brake the box, and poured it on his head. Spikenard was a very expensive ointment as it came from east India. Since this was a very expensive ointment, it showed that Lazarus and the two sisters may have been well off financially. The cost of that spikenard would have been about 11 month's salary for a worker. Mary was showing that she loved Jesus and especially for what He had done for Lazarus by raising him from the dead. When Mary had wiped the feet of Jesus with her hair, she was showing an act of submission to the Lord Jesus. For what she did, only a slave would do for the guests which would be invited to a dinner or other types of gatherings. Washing the feet was normally done to clean the dust of travel off the feet. Then the house was filled with the fragrance of the spikenard. (Song 1:3 KJV) Because of the savour of thy good ointments thy name is as ointment poured forth, therefore do the virgins love thee. In Song of Solomon 1:3, we read about the love that this woman had for King Solomon and it is recorded that the scent of the good ointments, she equates with the name of Solomon and then states that the virgins love him. This is a great spiritual teaching, when we read that the house of Simon was filled with the fragrance of the spikenard which we can equate with the wonderful aroma of Christ who brings salvation. Notice in SS 1:3, it states that the virgins love him. (2 Cor 11:2 KJV) For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ. For that is what the body of believers is spoken of as, we are espoused as a chaste virgin to only one husband and that is Christ.
John 12:4 (KJB)
Then saith one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, which should betray him,
After Mary did this lovely act for the Lord Jesus Christ, then on the heels of that fine act always comes some type of opposition. This time it comes from one of the disciples, namely Judas Iscariot. A modern expression would be, “No good deed ever goes unpunished.” It has happened to all of us. We do some type of good deed and immediately we are criticized for it.
John 12:5 (KJB)
Why was not this ointment sold for three hundred pence, and given to the poor?
One pence was the normal days’ wage for a worker, so the ointment would have been equal to about 10 months (300 days) wages according to Judas. It was a windfall that Judas would have loved to get his hands on. This verse gives a warning that there are those who think they are Christians or put on the face of a Christian, and yet are not. Judas was the only one of the band of 12 disciples that did not become saved. Judas was sounding real good here by stating that the ointment should have been sold and the money given to the poor but his real motive is found in the next verse.