Alabaster Box… A lesson of faith, mercy, humility, grace and forgiveness

Photo: The Alabaster Box Company

Photo: The Alabaster Box Company

I’ve been pondering lately scripture about the woman and the alabaster box. Little did I know Cece Winans also has a song about it… I’ve posted a link below. 

This also brings to mind the following scripture:

“But he who did not know, yet committed things deserving of stripes, shall be beaten with few. For everyone to whom much is given, from him much will be required; and to whom much has been committed, of him they will ask the more.” ~Luke 12:48

In the keeping with scripture and gifts, blessings

“To whom much is given (mercy [or fill in with what you’ve been given]) from him much will be required (more mercy). To go deeper still, if I’ve been shown Mercy, then I’ve also received forgiveness (of course upon asking) so if I’ve been forgiven, I must also forgive in greater measure than the forgiveness I’ve been given and give mercy in greater measure than that which I’ve received. God operates, not in addition, but multiplication… as in the verse “21 Then Peter came to Him and said, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?”
22 Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.” ~Mathew 18:21-22

Then grace, which is of God, bringing humility.

“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.” ~Ephesians 2:8-9

“For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.” ~John 1:17
“And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” ~2 Corinthians 12:9

A Sinful Woman Is Forgiven

36 Then one of the Pharisees asked Him to eat with him. And He went to the Pharisee’s house, and sat down to eat. 37 And behold, a woman in the city who was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at the table in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster flask of fragrant oil, 38 and stood at His feet behind Him weeping; and she began to wash His feet with her tears, and wiped them with the hair of her head; and she kissed His feet and anointed them with the fragrant oil. 39 Now when the Pharisee who had invited Him saw this, he spoke to himself, saying, “This Man, if He were a prophet would know who and what manner of woman this is who is touching Him, for she is a sinner.”
40 And Jesus answered and said to him, “Simon, I have something to say to you.”
So he said, “Teacher, say it.”
41 “There was a certain creditor who had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42 And when they had nothing with which to repay, he freely forgave them both. Tell Me, therefore, which of them will love him more?”
43 Simon answered and said, “I suppose the one whom he forgave more.”
And He said to him, “You have rightly judged.” 44 Then He turned to the woman and said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave Me no water for My feet, but she has washed My feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head. 45 You gave Me no kiss, but this woman has not ceased to kiss My feet since the time I came in. 46 You did not anoint My head with oil, but this woman has anointed My feet with fragrant oil. 47 Therefore I say to you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much. But to whom little is forgiven, the same loves little.”
48 Then He said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”
49 And those who sat at the table with Him began to say to themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?”
50 Then He said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you. Go in peace.” ~Luke 7:36-50

Opened Alabaster BoxThis caption from The Alabaster Box Company was with the Alabaster box photos on this post. 

‘The Alabaster Box has become a symbol of surrender and devotion to God.  It symbolizes this through the testimony of Mary’s offering of her alabaster box of ointment to the Lord Jesus, when she anointed His feet before His death. Matt 26:7 “There came unto him a woman having an alabaster box of very precious ointment, and poured it on his head, as he sat at meat.” (KJV)

In ancient times it was not uncommon for a young woman to acquire an alabaster box filled with precious perfumed ointment.  This precious gift would often be presented to the young girls husband as a token of her commitment to him.  This custom has been lost for hundreds of years, but can easily be taught to young people today.  Young ladies again can display and take part in this beautiful picture of commitment to purity and devotion to God. 

This can be illustrated beautifully by making the presentation of the alabaster box with its precious ointment during the wedding ceremony.  Like the original alabaster boxes, the alabaster box is designed to be opened only once, this is done by breaking the seal that holds the lid on.  Unlike a white wedding dress that is rarely seen before or after the wedding ceremony, the alabaster box can be given years in advance, using it to encourage young people to a higher standard.  After the wedding it can be displayed as a reminder of the commitment that has been made, as well as a testimony to the next generation.’

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