Mary of Bethany: Not a slacker
June 14, 2015
Topic: Spiritual Growth Passage: Luke 10:38–10:42
People Like Us - Summer 2015 Series
June 14, 2015 - Mary of Bethany: Not a Slacker
Introduction: Some people seem always to be “off their feet” when there’s work to be done. Describe your idea of a “slacker”.
How do different temperaments affect our impressions of other people?
Do you tend to identify more with Martha or with her sister Mary?
A. Mary of Bethany sat at the feet of Jesus.
a. Read Luke 10:38-40
b. Why is it described as Martha’s home? What else can we infer about this “family”?
c. How do you suppose a typical birth order might have affected the way this family operated and what biblical evidence is there for such inferences?
d. Is Jesus “putting Martha down”?
e. Someone said we should remember that “Mary and Martha are sisters.” What do you suppose was meant by that. (By the way, if Martha was the older, why do most typically speak of “Mary and Martha” vs. “Martha and Mary” which feels linguistically awkward?
B. Mary fell at the feet of Jesus, perhaps laying blame/responsibility at Jesus’ feet.
a. Read John 11:1ff.
b. While we cannot now know exactly what went on and what may have been in the minds of these two women, describe similarities and differences in their reported behavior and speculate as to reasons why.
c. Describe a time when you felt disappointed by Jesus and how you dealt with it.
C. Mary of Bethany, anointed the feet of Jesus.
a. Read John 12:1-8.
b. Context: What happened after Lazarus was raised but before this incident? (Cf. chapter 11:45-57)
c. Notice the different activities of Martha and Mary again. Should Martha have been at Jesus’ feet too?