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One Thing Needful (Lk 10.42)

H St John

The occasion is well known. Mary has been helping her sister Martha in the duties of the kitchen and feels that the time has come to leave these and to listen to the Lord’s words. Her sister’s protest draws out His defence: "But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her".

There is a beautiful picture drawn for us, by the pen of Paul, of the true Christian woman’s life, "I would have you without carefulness," he says, ". . . that ye may attend upon the Lord without distraction" (1 Cor 7.32,35); the word translated "attend" comes from two Greek words and means literally "for the good position beside the Lord". I think Mary’s portrait is sketched for us in these words; Martha forgot that our cares, and not our carefulness, are to be cast upon Him who careth for us.


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