Home / Poetry / Jesus, And the Woman’s Anointing (Poem)

Jesus, And the Woman’s Anointing (Poem)

Mark 14:9 Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached throughout the whole world, this also that she hath done shall be spoken of for a memorial of her.

At the house of Simon the Leper in Bethany,
Jesus sat at the table, and a woman appeared before thee.

He sat at the host’s table before the prepared meat,
Then something astonishing happened with how the woman chose to greet.

She took an alabaster box with a precious spikenard ointment,
Then broke it to anoint the head of the one God the Father had sent.

Soon the time would come for Christ to die at Calvary,
The oil was for the burial of the One who would set us free!

With indignation, His disciples spoke with unwarranted haste,
Exclaiming that the use of the expensive oil was a waste.

For it could have been sold for three hundred pence and given to the poor,
So they murmured against the woman, whose heart was on Jesus whom she sought to adore.

Instantly, Jesus brought their folly to a halt,
Explaining to the men whom her actions did exalt.

For the poor would be with them always,
But He would be taken from them in the coming days.

Anointed in preparation for His willing death and burial to redeem us from our fall.
A sacrifice of ointment in honor of a sacrifice to us all.

Because of her good deed in anointing our Savior,
Jesus declared a statement of favor.

Wherever in the world where the Gospel is shared,
Her actions will also be a spoken of as a memorial of how she cared.


As I wrote this, one of the things that caught my attention is how the actions by the woman are reflected through both her and Jesus. She is making a sacrifice, just as Jesus is about to sacrifice himself. She is preparing Him for a memorial that is to come, and His declaration is the same for her in that where the gospel is preached, this will also be remembered as a memorial to her.  She is receiving favor with God because she recognized the value of Jesus was far greater than that of the ointment, and He is doing the same for her!  This is pretty amazing!

Another thing that stood out is that during this encounter, the disciples are upset about this because of the money they could’ve sold the perfume for (Mark 14:4). The next event following this immediately turns to Judas betraying Jesus for money (Mark 14:10-11). What if he would’ve seen the value of Christ just as the woman saw Him?

Thank you for reading and God bless!

About Joel Bauer

Joel M. Bauer is a 49-year-old U.S. Army Veteran from Dunn, NC, which is just outside of Raleigh. After being honorably discharged from the U.S. Army, he attended school at Taylor University, a Christian liberal arts school, in Fort Wayne, IN, where he received his BS in social work and psychology. He has worked in such places as a homeless shelter, a community based treatment center for severe mental illnesses, a school for troubled students, and other social service agencies. His current endeavor is to build The Bottom Line website into a site that inspires both Christians and non-Christians alike, and brings glory to God.

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  1. Only if we could see into the hearts of men to rightfully judge their motives. We cannot but God does. We can only see their demeanor and responses.
    The Lord knew the thoughts and intents of the heart that both of these people in this story felt. He wasn’t fooled by the outburst and remarks made by Judas. He also saw the love and devotion from Mary who used a pound of this perfume and wiped his feet with her hair.

    I looked up the description of this perfume to copy and paste it for those that view this article:

    Spikenard was an uncommon perfume extracted from grasses that grew in the country of India. Once the juices were squeezed out of the grass, they were dried into a hard, lardlike substance. Turning that lardlike substance into perfume was a very lengthy and costly process. If you add to this the cost of transporting spikenard from India to other parts of the world, you can see why this particular perfume cost so much money.

    Spikenard was so expensive that few people could buy it; most had to buy one of the many cheap imitations available. But the word used in John 12:3 tells us that Mary didn’t bring Jesus a cheap imitation; she brought Jesus the real thing — an ointment so valuable that it was normally reserved and used only as gifts for kings and nobility. This was the gift Mary brought to Jesus.

    Isaiah 52:7 describes why Mary felt this way: “How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!”

    In contrast Judas was irate to the point of plotting against the Lord for the very thing that was what he valued, namely money.
    Truly an inward look at two lives and the way things came from this event.

    Appreciated this article. Was well said.

  2. Joel,
    Another fine piece of writing! Great poem and wrap-up with a powerful message for all.

    Thanks for sharing!
    God Bless~

  3. Because of her good deed in anointing our Savior,
    Jesus declared a statement of favor.

    Wherever in the world where the Gospel is shared,
    Her actions will also be a spoken of as a memorial of how she cared.

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