As we read through Luke each week there will be two devotions focusing on particular passages. Click here to read past devotions.
Focus Point: One Thing (Luke 10:38-42)
Mary sat at the Lord’s feet. An idiom, a student before her teacher. Like Paul at the feet of Gamaliel (Acts 22:3). This wasn’t the place for a women. “Male and female spaces were divided in the ancient world, and males and females usually did not intermingle even in the home. Women only crossed into the male world to wait on men and then retreated (unless they were elderly or prostitutes)” (Garland 453).
So Martha expounds not only her own frustration, society’s norms held the same expectation of Mary. But Jesus will not take it away from Mary. And his words hang as a challenge to Martha… join us.
Note: Following the Good Samaritan this is not a passage against activity. the key to the Samaritan’s story was taking action. “Go and do likewise,” is Jesus’ command. But crucial to our actions are the moments of listening at the feet of Jesus.
Connecting to Today: Ezekiel bounds in every direction, always at full speed. Down the stairs in a race, until he turns the corner to the deep down stairs… he looks at me, “scary”. Then waits for me to turn on the light and go with him.
The call to Martha also reaches my ears, to join at the feet of Jesus. To Listen. It is frightening to move into the darkness. I need the light.
And yet, busyness, distractions, worry take me away. Then I find I only have old truths, spirit words that once lit the way… but everyday my flashlight’s batteries need to be recharged. So I can see and point to the path.
A Christian not at the feet of Jesus is a like flashlight without batteries… as blind as the rest of the world.
- Sending 72 — This points back to Genesis 10:2-31 where a list of the world’s nations names 72. The connection foreshadows the church’s mission to the nations in the Old Testament. Note: Some translations have 70. The manuscripts are evenly divided. The Old Testament texts of Genesis 10 also vary. In the Greek version (Septuagint) there are 72, in the Hebrew version (Masoretic) there are 70.
- Tyre — The three cities, Sodom, Sidon, and Tyre, are cursed throughout the OT. Tyre specifically was a port city living in luxury by selling the products of Galilee. While Galilee lived at substance level.