"The penalty good men pay for indifference to public affairs is to be ruled by evil men." attributed to Plato

"Bad men need nothing more to compass their ends, than that good men should look on and do nothing." attributed to Edmund Burke

Let's between us make the world a better place.

Friday, 23 July 2010

Women of the Bible 10 Martha and Mary

"And Martha had a sister called Mary, who also sat at the Lord's feet, and heard his word. But Martha was cumbered about much serving; and she came up to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister did leave me to serve alone?"

St Luke X, vv. 39-40

We've all been there, at least we women have! We rush around doing all the work while others talk, watch, and generally don't help. But Martha received little support from Jesus, who told her she was too distracted, worried and fussing around to fulfill her hospitable role, when she should also have regard to the need to listen to His teaching.

"Martha, Martha," Jesus says. "You are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her."There is a balance, He is reminding us, between the spiritual and the practical sides of life. Both are equally important.

There is a further interpretation to be found in modern biblical commentary, to the effect that Mary is behaving as any man would in this Jerusalem suburb of Bethany of that time. She is listening to the Rabbi's teaching, so that she may impart that knowledge to others. And Jesus is accepting her in that role, albeit that she is a female. I leave that thought with you, dear reader!

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