Friendship Fellowship 2013
When can we use anointing oil?
One of the friends in Colorado Springs asked the question, “When was anointing oil first used in the Bible?” The book of Exodus is filled with rules of sacrifice, procedures and rituals, jobs and responsibilities of priests, God’s people and specs and design for the tent of the tabernacle and the temple. This includes how to wash, hands and feet and when to use anointing oil and the ingredients used in the oil. There was a “golden basin” and the oil was used to anoint and bless the scriptures, the door posts, the altar and the lamp-stand. The ingredients found in anointing oil include a base of 4 quarts of olive oil, and the spices sung about in the Christmas song “We Three Kings of Orient Are,” and also found in the burial perfumes of royalty. The expense of the perfume is also illustrated in what the woman named Mary came to pour all over Jesus from the Alabaster Jar. “While he was eating, a woman came in with a beautiful alabaster jar of expensive perfume and poured it over his head.” (Matthew 26:7)
Exodus 30 also is the first place you can find reference to men being anointed with the mixture of the sweet and bitter perfume. “Aaron and his sons,” are anointed with oil by instruction from God himself so “they can come and serve me.” “This is to be my (God) sacred anointing reserved for Worship. Do not use it for any other purpose.”
Anointing you and me
The writer of Hebrews writes, “When Christ comes as our High Priest of the good things, he went through the greater and more perfect sacrifice.” This is evidenced when he took a basin and washed his disciples feet, preparing them for service. “The Son of God came to serve, not to be served.” So it is Jesus who anoints us with that mixture of oil. It is Jesus who washes our feet to prepare us to serve others. It is Jesus who becomes the perfect sacrifice which at the time of Exodus was the bread baked by the priests for God. It was the blood of the ram sprinkled throughout the church which washed the people of their sins. Jesus becomes that sacrifice. So he gives us the bread and he tells us, “When you eat this bread, do this in memory of me. Then he takes the cup and he blesses it, and passes it around and he tells you and me that when we take the bread and drink from the cup, that we remember his sacrifice. And so we are anointed with oil and receive the father’s blessing. We now, receive and remember what Jesus did by shedding his blood for our sins, so that we could be forgiven and we drink of his cup. Paul writes to the church in Rome that ‘We are a living sacrifice acceptable to God,” When we prepare the sacrifice of praise, the sacrifice of giving our hearts and minds and everything that we do, our entire bodies, inside and out as a living sacrifice of praise. (Romans 12). The expression of our faith is what is communicated through answering the question of anointing with washing hands and feet; serving the bread and the cup, and anointing our heads with oil and the Father’s Blessing.
People get ready-Faith X-press
Can we rise from the ashes?
The word “hope” appears in the New and Old Testaments 150 times with the word “planning” as a root in the translation. Listening to two straight weeks of studying the word “hope” was a great exercise. From an art standpoint their were diagrams and paintings. From a poet, poems that reflected the psalmists worldview. From a place of special needs work and expressing our faith for concrete thinking people, hope becomes a tangible expression with a quote from the psalmist: “No one who puts their hope in God will ever be put to shame.” When communities start to rebuild from the ashes they are rebuilding in hope. When the lives of people with disabilities start again in group, host and family homes, when they hope in what God is doing, the past of the institution, the post traumatic shame that they experienced begins to heal with the hope each one has in God. Words like “steadfast,” and “love,” “promises,” “peace” leads to “joy,” that can be expressed in message, mission and music. The approach that Jesus takes is to show people “where hope is.” Hope can be found in the New Jerusalem, the new home that was built out of the ashes of the cross, and built up through the resurrected Christ. Can we rise from the ashes? Through the risen savior- “Yes we can!” “No one who hopes in you will ever be put to shame.” Psalm 25:3