For in that she hath poured this ointment
Which was so very precious, and cost so much,
upon my body:
for being poured on his head, it ran down all over his body.
She did it for my burial;
not for the interment of his body, but for the embalming of it, previous to it: the Jews used to embalm their dead, to show their constant respect to the deceased, and their belief of the resurrection; at least not only used to wash them, but anoint them with oil; for so runs one of their canons F9:
``they do all things necessary to the dead, (i.e. on the sabbath day,) (Nyko) , "they anoint him": that is, as Bartenora adds, "with oil"; and they wash him;''but the body of Christ, when dead, was not to be so used: the women intended it, and prepared materials for it, but the sabbath coming on, they rested according to the commandment; though, according to this canon, they might have anointed him, but they waited till the sabbath was over; and early on the first day, in the morning, they came to the sepulchre, in order to do it, but it was too late, Christ was risen; see ( Luke 23:56 ) ( 24:1 ) ( Mark 16:1 ) . Now either this woman had some revelation made to her, that the death of Christ was near at hand, and she feared, or knew, she should not be able to anoint him when dead; and therefore, as Mark has it, "she hath done what she could; she is come aforehand to anoint my body to the burying", ( Mark 14:8 ) : or if she had no knowledge of all this, nor any such intention, yet the Holy Ghost directed her to this action, with this view, as it were, for the performing of these funeral rites before he was dead; and so the Syriac version renders it, "she hath done it, (ynrbqmld Kya) , as it were, to bury me".
F9 Misn. Sabbat, c. 23. sect. 5.