The house in Bethany

How could this age be so dark, Lord?
All around persecute You.
Though cruel religion would slay You,
No one takes thought or concern.
While Your heart ached for God’s chosen,
We were just lepers You cleansed.
While they reject Your speaking,
We were the dead ones You raised.
While they despised Your Person,
We are the grateful You saved.

Lord, we’re so glad to be
The house in Bethany.
We bid You rest and eat,
Come, we’ve prepared for Thee.
Safe in this house, Lord You’re cherished,
We treasure You above all!
We grasp the chance to be with You,
Your presence our greatest joy.
Comfort Your heart with our tears, Lord,
Wash the world’s hatred away.
May we serve You a meal, Lord?
May we share in Your trial?
May we prepare Your Body?
May our love satisfy.

Oh! We are blessed to be,
Your house in Bethany.
Sharing Your table, we
Focus our gaze on Thee.
Lord, in our eyes You are worthy,
And what we have, Lord, we give.
Breaking our flask we anoint Thee,
What is most precious we spend.
All our heart’s ointment so costly,
Lord, we pour out on Thee.
May all the house be filled, Lord,
With fragrance sweet to Thee.
May Your whole church then hunger,
With more desire for Thee.

Lord, may we always be,
With You in Bethany.
Our free will offering,
The best, poured out on Thee.
Steve Miller

Detroit, MI, United States

This hymn puts together Luke 7:36-50 with the accounts in the other 3 gospels, especially John 12:1-8. I think this is correct even though all Protestant gospel harmonies that I have found seem to be sure that Luke 7 is a different event than the one in John 12, Matt 26 and Mk 14. (Catholics say that Luke 7 is the same event as in the other 3 gospels, but Mary the sister of Lazarus, who did this deed, is not the same person as Mary Magdalene (Jn 11:1-2,19; 19:25; 20:1).)

I think any reader of the Bible would get the feeling that all 4 accounts are the same event, but readers of commentaries will think Luke is a different event.

Here are the similarities between Luke 7 and the other 3:

1. alabaster flask of ointment (Lk 7:37; Mt 26:7; Mk 14:3)

2. she anointed the Lord's feet (Lk 7:38; Jn 12:3)

3. She wiped the Lord's feet with her hair (Lk 7:38; Jn 12:3).

4. It was in the house of someone named Simon (Lk 7:36, 39-40; Mat 26:6; Mk 14:3)

5. The Lord says that this deed was so great that it will be spoken of for a memorial of her wherever the gospel is preached (Mt 26:13; Mk 12:9). This implies the deed was unique.

The "insurmountable" differences between Lk and the others:

1. Luke's seems to be in Galillee and the others in Bethany, but Luke does not say it is in Galillee.

2. Luke's seems to have occurred much earlier, but Luke does not have connecting words to indicate it happened in sequence with the preceeding or following events in Luke. For example, Luke gives the Lord's 3 temptations in the wilderness in a different order than Matthew. Matt includes the connecting words so you know that they are in chronological order. Luke does not include connecting words there. Luke put them in order of our experience.

I post this long comment because I fear some conscientious, knowledgeable brothers (like me) may reject this very good song because they think it is wrong according to truth. That would be a loss.

Sonata Anderson

Vilnius, Lithuania

Oh, we are blessed to be, Your house in Bethany. What a wonderful song. We love You Lord.