No parallel account
However, Martha and Mary are mentioned by John (chapters 11 & 12).
- Lived in Bethany.
- Sisters to Lazarus.
- Mary is identified as one of the woman who anointed Jesus’ feet (also Mark 14).
Luke’s reason for recording
- These three stories focus on relationships moving from relationship with fellow man, relationship with Jesus to relationship with God.
- Luke stresses the inherent relationship between how one reacts to people and how one relates to God.
For understanding…background info
- Taken very serious
- Guests were believed to be sent by God.
- Therefore, seen as a sacred duty.
Why Martha was upset
- Martha felt obligated to fulfill her duty as host.
- Most likely saw Mary shirking her duty.
- If she shared the home she should have shared in hosting responsibilities.
- Even if she did not share the home Mary had familial responsibility.
- The use of the noun meris (portion, part and share) doesn’t downplay what Martha’s responsibilities but indicates that there are other responsibilities as well.
- The trick is determining what responsibilities are more important.
Luke cues in
- Luke uses the word perispao – distracted or pulled away from.
- Martha’s felt obligation pulled her away from the prime necessity.
The conflict between two “necessities”
- Martha felt obligated to perform a cultural “necessity.”
- Mary felt it was necessary to sit at Jesus’ feet and learn.
- There are many necessities in life, however, the prime necessity is a relationship with Jesus.
- If we don’t see this as the prime necessity the other “necessities” eventually become worthless.
- Understand that making a relationship with Jesus the prime necessity doesn’t mean shirking other duties and responsibilities.
- Our relationship with Jesus has an impact on all of our other relationships.
The Transformation Expectation
- Are you putting other necessities in front of your relationship with Jesus?
- God wants us to make our relationship with Jesus the priority.
- Make time to pray, study God’s word, meditate on his word and serve God.