Mary and Martha


I just finished reading the book “Chasing God, Serving Man-Divine Encounters Between Martha’s Kitchen and Mary’s Worship” by Tommy Tenney. It is an excellent book on bringing balance between those who minister to others (socially compassionate-the Martha’s) and those who minister to God (spiritually passionate-the Mary’s). In this set of nuggets we will be sharing insights from this book. Quotes from the book will be noted with page number. You can order the book online by going to:


For too long there has been division in the Body of Christ between the Martha’s and the Mary’s. Marthas become frustrated because it seems that all the Mary’s want to do is worship, pray, and become ‘irresponsible’ because they ‘never are touching others lives’ and they are ‘lazy’. Marys become frustrated with the Marthas in the church because it seems all the Marthas do is focus on work and helping others and ‘never spending time alone with God’. The Marys will even go as far as to say Jesus rebuked Martha for her busyness and for not being ‘spiritual enough’. We are going to find out that both attitudes are wrong and that without Marys and Marthas, the church becomes very lopsided and does not reflect the character of Jesus.


Jesus Was Dual-Natured

Jesus said, “The foxes have holes and the birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head.” Matthew 8:20. “Jesus wasn’t saying, ‘I don’t have any friends.’ Nor was he saying, ‘I don’t have enough money to get a hotel room.’ He was saying, ‘I have a hard time finding a place where I fit and where I’m comfortable.’ The problem is that Jesus was dual-natured.” Page 8

He was both truly God and truly man. You cannot separate His divinity from His humanity.


In scripture it appears that Jesus stayed in Bethany at Martha’s house when He went to Jerusalem. Why is this? “…because Mary entertained His divinity and Martha hosted His humanity”. Page 9.


The Fullness of God
Do you want to be in a church that has the fullness of God? Do you want more than a visitation of God at your church, but God to inhabit your church? Then it needs to be a church that cares for humanity while it hosts Divinity. The problem is that it seems churches either have a passion for meeting the needs of people, or being passionate for His presence. They either become ‘Seeker Friendly’ or ‘Spirit Friendly’. Yes, God will bless them by bringing the lost, or by showing up with His presence. And some will say they are experiencing revival. But real revival is “when God and man show up at the same time at the same place.” Page 86. This cannot occur if the Martha’s and Mary’s are practicing segregation in the church.


In the next nugget will be discussing “The Differences Between Mary and Martha”.


Copyright © 2001 Richard D. Dover. All rights reserved.
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Unless otherwise noted, Scripture quotations used are from the New American Standard Version (NAS).

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