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(08-07-13) Mary & Martha - Luke 10.38-42

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Mary & Martha – Luke 10:38-42

·      Three Sundays until I preach at the Parish Church

o  maybe John was being merciful to you!

·      4 Peters at a Petertide ordination

4 Marys who met Jesus!

Mary and Martha, Lazarus’ sisters from Bethany

·      2 strong points come out of this passage

o  one more commonly heard and perhaps more easily seen than the other

§  choosing what is better

§  the radical subversion of the place of women in society

o  look quickly at the latter, and then the former

·      Difficult to imagine, but a radical, scandalous scene

o  segregation

§  women in the kitchen

o  sat at the feet of a teacher, the disciple’s place

§  a place of learning

·      education not available to women

§  learning in order to become a teacher

·      teaching as a women certainly unaccepted

·      Jesus confirms Mary’s position as good

·      The same with Paul’s controversial sayings

“let them learn at home…”

§  ‘let them learn’?!!!

·      The arguments for an opening up of roles in the Church to women are unfortunately often sociological, even legal

o  saying things like:

§  “we must catch up with society

§  “we could be sued if we don’t conform

‘equality’ in terms of receiving God’s love and giving our lives in His service is a Gospel imperative

·      Often seen as contrasting the attitudes of Mary and Martha

o  Mary, sitting at Jesus’ feet

§  encouraged

o  Martha, preparing the meal in the kitchen

§  chastised/corrected

·      the dangers of busyness

o  perispavw (v40) – being distracted; to wheel about

fretting and fussing (v41) (Tom Wright)

§  merimnavw – thoughts occupied by

§  qorubavzw – troubled, disturbed (only use of this word in NT)

·      Choose what is better…

Hebrews 12:2

§  “fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith”

§  as we run the race, our strength comes from Him

·      futility of doing things in our own strength

·      Not a call to a contemplative life for everyone!

o  if we were all hermits then we’d all starve!

·      Brother Lawrence

The Practice the Presence of God

o  strike the right balance between

§  action and reflection

§  service and worship

§  busyness and rest

o  from time to time, try both at once!

§  is God at the bottom of my ironing pile?

§  is God in my office?

§  is God with me wherever I go?

o  yes, so let’s sit as His feet everywhere!

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