Text: John 12:20-26
The twelfth chapter of the Gospel of John reveals the multitude of plots surrounding the peasant king, Jesus of Nazareth. Though he stays in a simple home of friends on the outskirts of Jerusalem, he is not safe, nor are his friends. Mary, Martha, and their brother Lazarus are his hosts, the latter having found fame or infamy because the peasant king brought him forth from his tomb four days after his passing. Now Lazarus’ life is in danger for a second time, for the news of his rising has made the peasants even more devoted to their king. Those in power who fear they are losing spiritual sway over the masses cannot tolerate Lazarus, and all he represents, walking about the holy city.
But there is a conspiracy much closer to the peasant king than this. One of his own, one of the twelve, is plotting out of disappointment or desperation. When Mary anoints the feet of Jesus with an expensive perfume, Judas opines that it is a waste. So much good could have been done with the money, he insists, and his treacherous plans are finalized in his mind. Yes, the peasant king is surrounded by conspiracies, and he knows more than anyone that he has entered the last hours of his life.