This story from the bible makes Jesus look self-indulgent and Judas a champion of the poor. Consequently, Judas can claim that he turned Jesus over to the chief priests because Jesus was betraying the poor.
Below are two versions of the incident known as Jesus’ anointment at Bethany, from the Apostles Mark and John:
- Mark 14:
3 And being in Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, as he sat at meat, there came a woman having an alabaster box of ointment of spikenard very precious; and she brake the box, and poured it on his head.
4 And there were some that had indignation within themselves, and said, Why was this waste of the ointment made? 5 For it might have been sold for more than three hundred pence, and have been given to the poor. And they murmured against her.
6 And Jesus said, Let her alone; why trouble ye her? she hath wrought a good work on me. 7 For ye have the poor with you always, and whensoever ye will ye may do them good: but me ye have not always.
10 And Judas Iscariot, one of the twelve, went unto the chief priests, to betray him unto them.
1 Then Jesus six days before the passover came to Bethany, where Lazarus was, which had been dead, whom he raised from the dead. 2 There they made him a supper; and Martha served: but Lazarus was one of them that sat at the table with him. 3 Then took Mary a pound of ointment of spikenard, very costly, and anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped his feet with her hair: and the house was filled with the odour of the ointment.
4 Then saith one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, which should betray him, 5 Why was not this ointment sold for three hundred pence, and given to the poor?
6This he said, not that he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and had the bag, and bare what was put therein. (Is John bad-mouthing Judas?)
7 Then said Jesus, Let her alone: against the day of my burying hath she kept this. 8 For the poor always ye have with you; but me ye have not always.