Friday, April 24, 2009

A Sweet Smelling Sacrifice

John 12:3 Then Mary took a pound of very costly oil of spikenard, anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped His feet with her hair. And the house was filled with the fragrance of the oil.

When John writes of Mary anointing the feet of Christ with very costly oil, he is sure to include that the house was filled with the fragrance of the oil. Mary’s act of service to our Lord filled the room and was as sweet aroma. Just as the incense offered in the temple of the Lord accompanied the sacrificial offerings of a people obedient to God, so did Mary fill the house with the aroma of a sacrificial heart. To the Philippians Paul wrote, “I am being poured out as a drink offering on the sacrifice and service of your faith. . .” Paul’s service, like the drink offering poured out on the sacrifice, was rising up as an offering to our Lord, Jesus Christ, for a sweet smelling aroma to our King. Christ, our sacrifice upon Calvary, is worthy to be loved, served, and obeyed. It is the only appropriate response for one whose life has been radically altered by so great a sacrifice. Our service to our King is not compulsory, but, just like Mary, is a response that is reflexive from a heart of love He placed within us. That life of sacrifice emanates to a world the aroma of Christ. To some, it is the aroma of death. But to others, it is the aroma of life. And to Christ, our service is a beautiful smell. The oil may have been costly, but His sacrifice upon the cross was worth more than an ocean full of oil. Your sacrificial life is what he paid for. He enjoys and delights in it as He must have enjoyed the sweet fragrant oil filling the house where Mary was. May our new hearts reflexively sacrifice themselves to Christ, and our service become a sweet smelling aroma before the altar of heaven.

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