John 12.3 cont.
3 Then Mary took a pound (litre) of ointment, pure, costly spikenard, and anointed the feet of Jesus, and she wiped His feet with her hair. Then the house was filled with the fragrance of the ointment.
One of the places where I worked as a signalman on the railway was directly opposite the Weetabix factory in a place called Burton Latimer. The various smells being emitted from the factory were pleasing, although some did not like the sweetish smell.
As we know aromas can be either pleasing or not so pleasing.
Perfume, whether for a male or female have at least a dual process:
1 to detract from natural body odours.
2 To be pleasing to others who are around us.
Spikenard must have had quite a distinctive fragrance, and it must have been quite strong, because it filled the whole home of Mary, Martha, and Lazarus.
God’s word tells us that we are like a sweet smelling perfume, and in 2 Corinthians 2.15-16 we read:  Our lives are a fragrance presented by Christ to God. But this fragrance is perceived differently by those being saved and by those perishing.  To those who are perishing we are a fearful smell of death and doom. But to those who are being saved we are a life-giving perfume – (NLT).
How is the fragrance produced in us? We are unable to produce it from ourselves. Instead it is the Holy Spirit who works within us to bring to bear in our lives the fruit of the Holy Spirit: Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness; and Self-control (Glatatians 5.22-23).
The natural odours of our souls need to be washed away. The person who does not wash regularly will soon produce obnoxious smells. The person who does not clean their teeth regularly will have bad breath, which repels others.
In a similar manner we need to be constantly washed clean from our sin, which is the fragrance of death. Then we need to be immersed in the fruit of the Holy Spirit, which is the fragrance of the life of Jesus.