The Passion according to Matthew
Jesus said to his disciples, You know that in two days time it will be Passover, and the Son of Man will be handed over to be crucified. Then the chief priests and the elders of the people assembled in the palace of the high priest who was called Caiaphas, and they consulted together to arrest Jesus by treachery and put him to death. But they said, not during the festival, that there may not be a riot among the people.
In Matthews chronology, it is Wednesday, and Friday will be Passover. Jesus will become the new Passover lamb, bringing to his people not freedom from slavery in Egypt, but freedoms from the slavery of sin and the clutches of death.
At the beginning of Matthews Gospel, when the Magi inquired about the newborn king, Herod assembled the religious leaders to help locate the child. He wanted to kill him. Herod failed. Now, at the end of the Gospel, the religious leaders assemble for the same purpose. They will not fail.
You and I survived the first fragile days of life after our conception (some dont,) and weve survived through all the years since then. But one day we shall die. We cant foresee the details, but we can foresee the fact. We shall die. And we shall go to God.
Does the way I am living my life take that into account?
Lent is about more than losing weight.
Spend some quiet time with the Lord.
The Woman Who Came to Dinner
All four Gospels tell the story of a woman who enters the house where Jesus is a dinner guest and anoints him with precious oil. But there are significant differences.
In Matthew and Mark, a woman anoints Jesus head with expensive oil. She is not identified as a sinner.
In Luke, :a sinful woman in the city: weeps upon Jesus feet, wipes them with her hair, kisses them, and anoints them with perfume.
In John, Mary, the sister of Martha and Lazarus anoints the feet of Jesus with precious oil and dries them with her hair.
Many scholars believe that two different events gradually became intertwined in oral tradition: (1)While Jesus was at dinner, a sinful woman came to him, her tears fell on his feet, and she wiped them with her hair. (2) While Jesus was at another dinner a woman, to express her love for him anointed his head with oil.
By the time the Gospels were written, each evangelist had a slightly different version that had mixed together in one story some details from these two separate events.
Then as the centuries unfolded, the sinful woman was mistakenly identified as Mary Magdalene: probably because of the statement in Luke that severe demons had been cast out of her. Although this was a standard way of speaking of someone cured of sickness, some mistook it for sinfulness.