April 17, 2017
Matthew 26:6-16 - Now when Jesus was at Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, a woman came up to him with an alabaster flask of very expensive ointment, and she poured it on his head as he reclined at table. And when the disciples saw it, they were indignant, saying, "Why this waste? For this could have been sold for a large sum and given to the poor." But Jesus, aware of this, said to them, "Why do you trouble the woman? For she has done a beautiful thing to me. For you always have the poor with you, but you will not always have me. In pouring this ointment on my body, she has done it to prepare me for burial. Truly, I say to you, wherever this gospel is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will also be told in memory of her."
Then one of the twelve, whose name was Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests and said, "What will you give me if I deliver him over to you?" And they paid him thirty pieces of silver. And from that moment he sought an opportunity to betray him. (ESV)
Are You free? - The woman acknowledges Jesus as Lord and anoints Him to prepare Him for burial. Judas seeks to betray the Master. Which one was set free? Which one condemned himself? What about us? Do our daily lives embrace Christ and choose the forgiveness He offers? Or do we betray Christ and crucify Him?
Today we also continue the readings from the Prophecy of Ezekiel (the Call of the Prophet), Exodus (the Passion, Death and Resurrection of our Lord prefigured in the journey of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt into the Promised Land) and Job (his tenacious faith in God).
This evening many parishes celebrate the Sacrament of Holy Anointing, offered on Great and Holy Wednesday for the healing of soul and body and for the forgiveness of sins.
- Wednesday - Ezekiel 2:3-3:3, Exodus 2:11-22, Job 2:1-10, Matthew 26:6-16
The icon is a detail of the Extreme Humility of Christ.