Passion Sunday- Sunday 13th March 2016 – John 12:1-8

Had a break as I’d got a bit stale but this new way of looking at Scripture I’m enjoying – I hope you do it.

I got the inspiration from this article I read over Christmas:

http://www.abc.net.au/religion/articles/2015/12/29/4379689.htm

where Prof. Sarah Coakley considers left side of the brain and the right side to produce different thinking states. The left ‘side of the brain (with) that neurological states associated with cool analysis and executive decisions’. 

Whereas ‘In contrast, the right brain’s capacity to replenish, enrich and re-invigorate our cultural imagination by means of meditation, dream, myth, ritual, music and poetry’. 

So My three questions will be:

  1. What left hand side of the brain thinking might I find surprising or challenging in this passage?
  2. What right hand side of the brain thinking might I find surprising or challenging in this passage?
  3. What might I preach about – living in suburban Kidderminster.
  1. What left hand side of the brain thinking might I find surprising or challenging in this passage?
  1. It was a waste of money – says Judas. And he knows about money. He knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.
  2. It was a waste of money – in a family where there was little. Martha is serving not a servant. Mary knows the value of this act and its cost.
  3. ‘The house was filled with the fragrance’ – ‘Lord, already there is a stench because he has been dead for four days.’ Lazarus’ death smell has now gone. Jesus’ is approaching.
  1. What right hand side of the brain thinking might I find surprising or challenging in this passage?
  1. The sheer sensuality of this act is disturbing. As Mary lets her hair down to wipe Jesus’ feet, we want to look away. It is embarrassing. Yet so compelling – the acts of love and thankfulness are outside ‘common decency’.
  2. Jesus’ passion starts. He hands himself over to be embalmed before he dies. He accepts this embalming. His mind is being sharpened to accept what is coming.
  3. There would be just men around the table. And a woman comes to do this. This is totally against social norms. I want to cheer Mary on.
  1. What might I preach about – living in suburban Kidderminster.
  1. We have a gentleman who comes to our church and often he smells but last Sunday the smell was terrible. People complained. Smells are in people’s minds and so I might discuss the smells!
  2. ‘You always have the poor with you.’ what’s our response to this. How are we serving the poor?
  3. Mary prepared Jesus for his death. I might wander about how we are preparing each other for our own deaths.
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