Deuteronomy 15:4, The Poor Will Be Always With You
However, there need be no poor people among you, for in the land the LORD your God is giving you to possess as your inheritance, he will richly bless you.
//One day, a woman poured a costly ointment over Jesus’ head and/or feet, and some who were watching this extravagance balked. Couldn’t this ointment be put to better use than anointing the Messiah? Perhaps it could be sold and the money given to the poor?
Jesus replied that the poor would always be available, but that he was soon leaving the scene. It’s an odd justification, especially in light of today’s verse in Deuteronomy.
To put the Deuteronomic verse in context, it is a promise of abundance in an upcoming land of “milk and honey.” The Promised Land, as it came to be known on the journey out of Egypt to Palestine, would overflow with God’s provision, and in that place there need not be any poor.
The key phrase, of course, is “need not.” It didn’t work out that way. Israel, in their new land, quickly evolved to a monarchy that favored a few and left the multitude destitute. Such was the State of the Union by Jesus’ time … a state that seemed unfixable, for Jesus indicated that it was never going away.
Does this justify Jesus accepting a costly ointment as an anointing? What do you think?