And, of course, we don’t need to look far. Jesus models for us a very different attitude to women. The way he treated women and responded to them was radically different to the prevailing culture of his day and deeply shocking to many who encountered him.
It is likely that many women travelled with him in the wider band of his disciples.
Martha and Mary were his friends and he was a welcome guest in their house.
When he was thirsty, he asked a Samaritan woman for a drink. We can’t realise how scandalous this was. Not only was he approaching a woman in a way that was unacceptable in his time, it was a Samaritan woman, whose religious beliefs were anathema to the Jews. In this way, Jesus crossed boundaries and broke, and challenged those cultural and religious traditions that not only excluded women, but also enabled them to be treated as property and dealt with in the same negligent and wilfully violent way.
Then, we have this beautiful story of Jesus honouring and receiving the kindness of the woman who anoints him, shaming the men who had welcomed him in by her profound care born. I suppose, of her thankfulness to him and her recognition of what she saw in him, nothing less than a different way of being human – a different way of being a man (see Mark 14. 3-9).
I’m @HexhamAbbey to preach & preside at a service marking White Ribbon Sunday. We remember all who have lost their lives due to Domestic Violence & come together to stand & be counted amongst those who refuse to excuse, condone or remain silent about domestic abuse pic.twitter.com/gh39KWVG0I
— Stephen Cottrell (@CottrellStephen) November 7, 2021