The Home of Simon the Leper: Matthew 26:6-7
“6) Now when Jesus was in Bethany, at the home of Simon the leper, 7) a woman came to Him with an alabaster vial of very costly perfume, and she poured it on His head as He reclined at the table.” Matthew‬ ‭26‬:‭6‬-‭7‬ ‭
We are now in the final two nights of Jesus before the Passover. Both Matthew 26:6 and Mark 14:3 mentions that Jesus stayed in the home of Simon the leper in the town of Bethany.
Many scholars believe this was the leprous man Jesus cured in Matthew 8:1-5 when He had come down from the Sermon on the Mountain. Jesus spent His last nights on earth lodging with a former leper.
This former untouchable and His home became the center of activity for the early church. It is a testimony of the redemptive power of Jesus Christ. Jesus redeemed both Simon and his house.
We also know from John 11:1 and John 12:1 that Bethany was the home of Lazarus whom Jesus had raised from the dead, and his two sisters Mary and Martha. These three were friends of Jesus and may have lived in close proximity to the house of Simon. This was a safe place for Jesus and His disciples because they were among friends.
These verses punctuate the importance of good friendships. Jesus invested in positive and deep relationships. It is imperative that we follow His example.
Though not stated in the Bible, it is very probable that these two lodgings in Bethany hosted some of the 120 followers who met continually for prayer prior to Pentecost. Could it be that Simon the Leper and Lazarus were key figures in launching the early church? (See Acts 1:13-14) It appears that the disciples stayed in the upper room in Jerusalem, but many of the 120 may have continued lodging in Bethany.
We now move beyond mere friendship to the Christian concept of fellowship. A close Christian community developed among this group which were a mere Sabbath day walk from Jerusalem. These was a significant part of the launching pad of the Christian Church.
This text screams of the importance of dedicating your home to Christian service and ministry. In the absence of church buildings, Christian homes became the center of much ministry in the early church. (See Acts 2:42-47)
Daily Bible Commentary By Terry Baxter: Cofounder of GoServ Global