John 12:1-7—Six days before the Passover celebration began, Jesus arrived in Bethany, the home of Lazarus—the man he had raised from the dead. A dinner was prepared in Jesus’ honor. Martha served, and Lazarus was among those who ate with him. Then Mary took a twelve-ounce jar of expensive perfume made from essence of nard, and she anointed Jesus’ feet with it, wiping his feet with her hair. The house was filled with the fragrance.
But Judas Iscariot, the disciple who would soon betray him, said, “That perfume was worth a year’s wages. It should have been sold and the money given to the poor.” Not that he cared for the poor—he was a thief, and since he was in charge of the disciples’ money, he often stole some for himself.
Jesus replied, “Leave her alone. She did this in preparation for my burial. You will always have the poor among you, but you will not always have me.”
Jesus performed many miracles during His time here on the Earth. And while it’s easy to focus on those miracles, Jesus came to do so much more than just fix a few physical problems.
Mary understood that the best thing she could have done at that moment was to worship Jesus, so she did. She knew that Jesus had a purpose beyond just providing for the needy. He came to Earth to bring about a change in humanity; He took upon Himself all of our mistakes and misses so that we could have a real relationship with our Creator.
As the Church, the people of God, we’re called to serve the poor, care for the sick, and help those in need, just as Jesus did. But that isn’t the end of our responsibility; if we stop there, we’ve only helped take care of temporary, physical needs. Every single one of us has a greater spiritual need. We have all missed the mark of God’s glorious standard, and Jesus came, died, and resurrected to provide a solution for that problem.
Jesus came to provide all of humanity with a way to spend eternity with God, in His Kingdom. He announced God’s love for us and showed that He has power even over death. Our sin, the mistakes that we’ve made, cause us to be separated from God, but by trusting in Jesus we are given new life. After we give our lives to Jesus, we should want to serve those around us and help out with their physical needs, but all for the purpose of introducing them to the one who can help them with their spiritual need.
At Easter, and throughout the year, we do whatever is necessary for everyone who steps onto a Barefoot Church campus to hear this message that Jesus came down from heaven to the Earth to bring. We don’t want a single person to leave not knowing about the Good News of what God has done for humanity. It may seem like we’re wasting a lot of money on Easter weekend, but we’re doing everything we can to advance the Gospel throughout our community in whatever ways we can.
If you’re in North Myrtle Beach or Whiteville, I want to invite you out to one of our campuses for an incredible Easter service you will not forget. Otherwise, you can join us online at barefootchurch.com—we would love to have you with us for this experience. For more information on service times, check out barefootchurch.com.