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By: Pastor Bill Muir

Before You Are Too Hard On Martha

Mary and Martha lived in the town of Bethany; just a couple of miles east of Jerusalem.  Martha was the one who graciously invites her dear friend Jesus and His disciples into her home. There was no “calling ahead”, so I assume they just showed up on her doorstep! Martha’s gift of hospitality shows what a giving person she was.

The verse states the home belongs to her, which makes her the head of the household.  It is also large enough to accommodate Jesus and his disciples for lodging, and she had enough food to feed them all.  This hints at some degree of affluence.  Some believe Martha was the older sister, and perhaps she was used to being “in charge.” (I’m an older sibling… we sometimes have a reputation!)

Martha shows her courageous side by having a close friendship with Jesus and housing Him.  It was dangerous to associate too closely with Him, as the authorities were trying to find a way to kill Jesus. (John 7: 25-32) She was willing to face the consequences and let everyone know of her devotion to Him.


Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made.”  Jesus was teaching and speaking to the gathered group. Meanwhile, Martha was busy making sure her guests were comfortable and well fed. We should commend her for her gift of service in seeing to the needs of others.  Domestic work would have been the norm for women in her time.  She was simply doing what was expected of her.

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