1 When Jesus had finished all these sayings, he said to his disciples,
2 “You know that after two days the Passover is coming, and the Son of Man will be handed over to be crucified.”
3 Then the chief priests and the elders of the people gathered in the palace of the high priest, who is called Caiaphas,
4 and they conspired together in order to arrest Jesus secretly and kill him.
5 But they said, “Not during the feast, because there would be a riot among the people.”
6 So when Jesus was staying at Bethany in the house of Simon the leper,
7 a woman came up to him with an alabaster container of very expensive cologne, and she poured it on his head as he reclined at a table.
8 And when the disciples saw it, they were offended, saying, “Why this waste?
9 Because this could have been sold for a large sum and given to the poor.”
10 But Jesus, being aware of this, said to them, “Why are you bothering the woman? Because she has done a beautiful thing for me.
11 Because you always have the poor with you, but you will not always have me.
12 When she poured this cologne on my body, she did it to prepare me for burial.
13 Honestly, I am telling you, wherever this gospel is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will also be told in memory of her.”
14 Then one of the twelve, the one called Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests
15 and said, “What will you give me if I hand him over to you?” And they paid him thirty pieces of silver.
16 And from that moment he looked for an opportunity to betray him.
the last straw for Judas
Matthew places this incident immediately after Jesus’ parable of the sheep and goats, where the nations are judged on the basis of how they had treated the needy. Perhaps Judas thought that Jesus was acting the hypocrite then, when he accepted the gift of the anointing with perfume by this woman. At any rate, for Judas, he had found his limit. He had come to the last straw.
Where is your breaking point in your commitment to Jesus? You expect him to bless you if you stay committed to him, but what if the blessings stop? Do you have a limit beyond which your faith is not willing to stay faithful? If so, be prepared for that faith to be tested. The Lord will stretch you at the point in which you are prepared to break.
LORD, make us strong in our commitment to you, and limitless in our acceptance of your sovereignty.