Tuesday, February 19, 2019

A Beautiful Thing Part 1 | Colin DCruz

This message was preached by Colin D at Word of Grace Church on  February 17th, 2019. To listen/download the audio please click hereTo listen to the Sunday's worship and prophetic contributions please click here

When it comes to money, most of us get embarrassed. We get embarrassed to reveal our salary or sometimes, even to pay the bill at a restaurant. We must have heard people say that it’s not right to talk about money during a church meeting.

But we see in the Bible that Jesus talked about money. In fact, out of whatever Jesus spoke in the Bible, 13% of it is about money. He spoke more about money when compared to heaven, hell, and discipleship. So, do you think money is important? Yes! There is something significant about money.

Every year, in the month of November, we take a gift offering from all the churches under Regions Beyond across the globe. I am very blessed through Word of Grace church because of their generous giving every year towards Gift Day offering. The money that we receive towards gift day offering is used for different purposes. We send a part of this money to other Regions Beyond churches, we use a part of this money for the poor and the other part of the money is used to develop the infrastructure of our church. Well done church!

When we do not understand how to handle money according to the Bible, it can get very legalistic. We are going to look at Mark 14, which tells us about a woman called Mary, who breaks open the alabaster jar and anoints Jesus. However, before going through that, let us understand the relationship that Mary and her siblings share with Jesus.

John 11:5 - Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus
Jesus loved Martha, her sister, Mary and her brother Lazarus.

John 11:1-7
Now a man named Lazarus was sick. He was from Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. (This Mary, whose brother Lazarus now lay sick, was the same one who poured perfume on the Lord and wiped his feet with her hair.) So the sisters sent word to Jesus, “Lord, the one you love is sick.”
When he heard this, Jesus said, “This sickness will not end in death. No, it is for God’s glory so that God’s Son may be glorified through it.”Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. So when he heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed where he was two more days,and then he said to his disciples, “Let us go back to Judea.”
When Lazarus fell sick, his sister, Martha, and Mary sent a word to Jesus about Lazarus. Jesus, by Spirit, knew that this will not end in death. Jesus stayed for two more days and then decided to return to Judea.
John 11:17 - 17 On his arrival, Jesus found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb for four days.
By the time Jesus reached the village, it has been 4 days since Lazarus was dead and buried.
Jesus, after seeing Martha and Mary run to him and cry out saying, “If you had been here, my brother wouldn’t have died”, Jesus wept too and was deeply moved by the Spirit.
John 11:38-40
38 Jesus, once more deeply moved, came to the tomb. It was a cave with a stone laid across the entrance. 39 “Take away the stone,” he said.
“But, Lord,” said Martha, the sister of the dead man, “by this time there is a bad odor, for he has been there four days.”
40 Then Jesus said, “Did I not tell you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?”
43 When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” 44 The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face.
Jesus said to them, “Take off the grave clothes and let him go.”
Imagine any one of our family members in place of Lazarus. How would we feel? Wow!!! We would not stop praising and thanking Jesus. Jesus has rule over life and death. For those who put their faith in Jesus will rise up when he returns and go with him.
In Mark 14, we see that Jesus was visiting Bethany again. How was he welcomed?
Mark 14:3 – While He was in Bethany, reclining at the table in the home of Simon, the Leper, a woman came with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, made of pure nard. She broke the jar and poured the perfume on his head.
John 12:2 – Here, a dinner was given in Jesus’s honor. Martha served, while Lazarus was among those reclining at the table with him.
Where was the dinner? Simon, the Leper’s house. The dinner was given in Jesus’s honor. Why was Simon called “Simon, the Leper”? If he were a leper, he would not have been living with the community. Therefore, what we understand is that Simon who was a leper who got healed by Jesus.
At Simon’s home, what did Mary do? She did not put perfume on Jesus with her finger. She broke the jar of alabaster and poured the whole perfume on his head. What is so special about it? That perfume costs a year’s wages.
What devotion! The disciples felt,” What a waste!” They rebuked her. The disciples were calculating in their heads. However, Mary was doing with her heart. Jesus raised her brother, Lazarus to life. Breaking the jar of alabaster was the response to what Jesus did for her brother.
When the disciples rebuked her harshly, Mary did not say anything. However, Jesus said, “Leave her alone”. The King of Kings, Greatest of all said that.
Mark 14:9 – truly I tell you, wherever the gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told in memory of her.
Wow! What a privilege!
We see three things –
1.      Jesus says, “It is a beautiful thing to me”.
Mark 14:6 – “Leave her alone”, said Jesus. “Why are you bothering her? She had done a beautiful thing to me.
End of the day, whatever we do, what does Jesus think about it?
2.      Mary’s giving was timely.
Mark 14:7-8 – the poor you will always have with you, and you came help them any time you want. But you will not always have me. She did what she could. She poured perfume on my body beforehand to prepare for my burial.
Can you imagine? The perfume that was poured on Jesus was so much that the fragrance would not have left him until he was buried and stayed inside the tomb for three days.
 Luke 24:1-2 – on the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb.
The spices here are not to make a curry, but to embalm Jesus. But the women found that the stone was rolled away. The women didn’t get a chance to embalm him but Mary did it even before he died.
What Mary did was prophetic and timely. It would have been too late 4 days later. Sometimes God prompts us to do things and we need to do it immediately. Her giving has been immortalized in scripture for all to read. That is how impactful her giving was.

3.      How to give?
Mary, after pouring the perfume kissed the feet of Jesus. If we read the new testament there was someone else who kissed Jesus, i.e., Judas. However, what is the difference? One was a kiss of love and the other was a kiss of betrayal.
Mathew 26: 48-49 – Now the betrayer had arranged a signal with them: “The one I kiss is the man; arrest him.” Going at once to Jesus, Judas said, “Greetings, Rabbi !” and kissed him.
How we give matters. We can give either extravagant like Mary or like Judas without our hearts in it. God does not want that kind of giving.
Sadly, the current younger generation is selfish. It is all about me. We need to change that. We need to teach them to give sacrificially. It should not be like we buy all the things lavishly and give very minimal to God.


  • How do you view money? Is it something you own or are you a steward of it?
  •  Have you ever asked Jesus whether you should spend on something? Have you ever asked him who you should bless?
  • Have you ever been challenged to give in faith - share a story from your life?
  • Should I give when I don't have? Should I borrow to give? Can I plan my giving?
  • What is your biggest take away from this sermon?

 Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again),  Spirit-filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking church in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that has people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the Great Commission into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service.  Word of Grace is a part of a wider international family of Churches called RegionsBeyond.To know more about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org. 

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