When Jesus finished saying these things, he told his disciples,
"You know that Passover comes in two days. That's when the Son of Man will be betrayed and handed over for crucifixion."
At that very moment, the party of high priests and religious leaders was meeting in the chambers of the Chief Priest named Caiaphas,
conspiring to seize Jesus by stealth and kill him.
They agreed that it should not be done during Passover Week. "We don't want a riot on our hands," they said.
When Jesus was at Bethany, a guest of Simon the Leper,
a woman came up to him as he was eating dinner and anointed him with a bottle of very expensive perfume.
When the disciples saw what was happening, they were furious. "That's criminal!
This could have been sold for a lot and the money handed out to the poor."
When Jesus realized what was going on, he intervened. "Why are you giving this woman a hard time? She has just done something wonderfully significant for me.
You will have the poor with you every day for the rest of your lives, but not me.
When she poured this perfume on my body, what she really did was anoint me for burial.
You can be sure that wherever in the whole world the Message is preached, what she has just done is going to be remembered and admired."
Published by permission. Originally published by NavPress in English as THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright 2002 by Eugene Peterson. All rights reserved. (The Message Bible Online)