Bible Society of South Africa
Hennie Symington

A journey of the soul – Day 10

The stations of Christ’s humanity

Bible text(s)

Jesus Visits Martha and Mary

38As Jesus and his disciples went on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha welcomed him in her home. 39She had a sister named Mary, who sat down at the feet of the Lord and listened to his teaching. 40Martha was upset over all the work she had to do, so she came and said, “Lord, don't you care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her to come and help me!”

41The Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha! You are worried and troubled over so many things, 42but just one is needed. Mary has chosen the right thing, and it will not be taken away from her.”

Luke 10:38-42GNBOpen in Bible reader

The Bible gives us few glimpses of Jesus’ domestic life as an ordinary human being. Yet, there are touching scenes of Jesus in ordinary situations close to those he loved.

We read in the beginning of the Gospel according to Mark about the time Jesus went with Simon and Andrew to visit their house, after going to synagogue. When Jesus learned that Simon’s mother was ill, he went in the house to greet her. He took her hand and healed her, after which, she got up and served them a meal.

In Luke, we find ourselves in a very human and even humorous situation, with the two sisters, Mary and Martha, interacting with Jesus in two very different ways. There was Mary, on the one hand, hanging onto every word Jesus said as they chatted, possibly about what people were saying about him or the meaning of the parable that he had just told the people. Then Martha, not able to contain herself for another minute storms in and complains to Jesus about having to do all the housework while Mary sits idly by his feet. How typically human! What does Jesus do? He is not angry or irritated. Acknowledging each one’s specific nature, it is almost as if he is saying, “Relax Martha, do what you do best while Mary has chosen to do what is best for her at this point in time.”

In Christ’s mind, homeliness and holiness were interwoven. He came to earth as a human and being human means dealing with relationships that are closest to our hearts. How wonderfully human of Jesus to see this and how godly of him to indulge in the intimacy that an ordinary family could offer him.

Bible Society of South Africav.4.18.7
Find us on