Thursday, January 24, 2019

9 Things I Love About Martha

Martha is most commonly known for when she was rebuked by Jesus when he said, “Martha, Martha, 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” (Luke 10:41-42). There’s more to Martha’s story than her lowest point. There’s a lot to like about this women.

1. Martha had a gift of hospitality. She had welcomed Jesus into her home (Luke 11:38). She knew how to both create an environment for relationship with others, and how to fill it.

2. Martha served (Luke 10:40). I’ve heard it said that a weakness is a strength carried to an extreme. I’m not sure how theologically sound or universally true that is, but in this case it seems to fit. She was working so hard to serve so much that it was interfering with her thinking. Her serving was a strength. We know that her serving could be a good thing because it was later recorded without incident: “and Martha served” (John 12:2). In the context of hospitality, service likely meant a party. I expect Martha loved the various times of the year for the various annual Jewish feasts.

3. Martha loved her prostitute sister and her sick brother. “Now a certain man was sick, Lazarus of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha. It was that Mary who anointed the Lord (Mark 14:3; John 12:3) with fragrant oil and wiped His feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick. Therefore the sisters sent to Him, saying, ‘Lord, behold, he whom You love is sick’” (John 11:1-3).

4. Martha was strong in difficult circumstances. In mourning the death of her brother (John 11:19), she got up to go meet Jesus (John 11:20) even before he made it into town (John 11:30).

5. Martha believed in the power of God. Upon meeting up with Jesus she said, “Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that whatever You ask of God, God will give You” (John 11:21-22).

6. Martha had hope. When Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again,” Martha replied, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day” (John 11:23-24). This knowledge of “the last day” very possibly means Martha knew Bible prophecy and watched the signs of the times.

7. Martha believed in Jesus as her Savior. Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. “And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?” and she answered “Yes, Lord, I believe that You are the Christ, the Son of God, who is to come into the world” (John 11:25-27).

8. Martha thought of others even in grief. "When she had said these things, she went her way and secretly called Mary her sister, saying, ‘The Teacher has come and is calling for you’” (John 11:28).

9. Martha had practical perspective. After Jesus came to the tomb and called for its opening, Martha noted, “Lord, by this time there is a stench, for he has been dead four days” (John 11:39).

Martha was someone who could take both the short view and the long view, think about others and forget them. Like all of us she had her ups and downs, but overall she knew her Savior, she knew how to love well, and she was a blessing to those around her.

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