Bathed His Feet with TearsAug 8th, 2012 | By admin | Category: Special Features (click on Article name)
“Bathed His Feet with Tears”
“She began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head.”
We find reference in many old books to the custom of colleting the tears of the whole family and preserving them in bottles. Thus King David prays, “Put thou my tears in to thy bottle: are they not in thy book?” Tear bottles have been found in very large numbers in opening ancient tombs. They are made of thick glass usually, although the very poor sometimes had just simple pottery bottles, not even baked or glazed. They were all made with a slender body, broad at the base, with a funnel-shaped top. Every member of the family owned a tear bottle and they collected the tears of the whole family.
When serious trouble or a death occurred in the home, all the relatives came and each one brought his tear bottle with him. As they wept and wailed, the tears rolling down their cheeks, each person took his or her tear bottle and gathered tears from the faces of all present.
This bottle was exceedingly sacred to them. It represented all the heartaches, sorrows, and bereavements from the grandparents down to the small child. When a person died, his tear bottle was buried with him, as one of his most sacred possessions.
This helps us to better a better understanding of what the woman did for her Master. She noticed the very discourteous way in which Christ was treated as a guest in the house of Simon the Pharisee.
He provided no water to wash the Lord’s feet and no oil to anoint his head; so this poor, sinful woman, longing for forgiveness and a new life, took her tear bottle, poured the tears over his tired, dusty feet and wiped them with her long hair. A great sacrifice indeed, done in love and gratitude to the Saviour. They could not be replaced and she might die without a bottle of tears to be buried with her in her tomb.
“She bathed his feet with tears.”
Strange Scriptures that perplex the Western Mind (Barbara M. Bowen 1940)