July 2020: We are still open online, and orders are fulfilled with minimal delays. For the foreseeable future, visits to the Studios and In-store pickups of orders are unavailable.

She Is Come Aforehand by Elspeth Young

She Is Come Aforehand

{ Mary of Bethany }
Paper prints & posters
High grade art reproductions available on high quality 9pt (100#) paper. Combined shipping available for most smaller sizes.
4" x 4.75"$3.9511" x 14"$25.0016" x 20"$52.0024" x 28.5"$111.00
5" x 7"$5.0012" x 14.25"$28.0018" x 21.25"$62.0024" x 30"$117.00
8" x 10"$12.0012" x 16"$32.0018" x 24"$70.0024" x 32"$125.00
9" x 10.5"$13.0014" x 18"$41.0020" x 23.75"$77.0024" x 36"$140.00
11" x 17"$20.0016" x 19"$50.0020" x 24"$78.00
Giclées on canvas (Pre-mounted)
High grade canvas artwork reproductions premounted to durable gatorboard for easy framing.
6" x 7"$25.0011" x 14"$90.0014" x 16.5"$135.0018" x 21.25"$224.00
7.75" x 9"$41.0012" x 14"$98.0014" x 18"$147.0018" x 24"$252.00
8" x 10"$47.0011" x 17"$110.0016" x 19"$178.00
9" x 10.75"$57.0012" x 16"$112.0016" x 20"$187.00
Giclées on canvas (unmounted)
Large rolled canvas prints that cannot be shipped pre-mounted to gatorboard. These prints come with a 2-inch margin for the customer to mount the print to stretcher bars at their local framing store.
20" x 23.75"$198.0024" x 28"$280.0024" x 30"$300.00
20" x 24"$200.0024" x 28.5"$285.0024" x 36"$360.00
Other products
Other options including the original artwork, bookmarks, and limited edition prints.
Bookmark$1.50Original oil painting$9,289.00 Sold
† These prints show the entire painting. All other images are cropped to fit standard frame/print sizes. By purchasing a print, you agree to accept the image shipped to you whether cropped or not, as presented on this site. All print sizes link to a preview of the print. Print sizes are the image dimensions, not the dimensions of the paper. Sizes are rounded up to the nearest 1/8th inch.

And being in Bethany...

as [Jesus] sat at meat, there came a woman having an alabaster box of ointment of spikenard very precious; and she brake the box, and poured it on his head...

And Jesus said...

She hath done what she could: she is come aforehand to anoint my body to the burying. Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached throughout the whole world, this also that she hath done shall be spoken of for a memorial of her.

Mark 14:3, 6, 8-9

The story behind She Is Come Aforehand

At times, efforts to do good and lift the lives and spirits of others may be demeaned by passersby—or even by detracting voices that chant within the mind.  Such was the case for beloved Mary.  Her "precious" offering of devotion was described by Elder James E. Talmage as "an expression of adoration," the "fragrant outwelling of a heart overflowing with worship and affection" (Talmage 512).   Unfortunately, however, her tribute was criticized by Judas and others as a "waste" (Mark 14:4).

In the writings of Pliny the Elder, a contemporary of the era, we find an echo of the rebuke Judas offered in response to Mary's gift.  Pliny describes the use of such perfumes as a "luxury" and, indeed, the "most superfluous of any" because such "unguents lost their odour in an instant, and die away the very hour they are used."  He further declaims:  "How, I should like to know, could a perfume be at all...productive of any kind of pleasure?" (Pliny 167-168).

The Savior's instant reproof of Judas silences any who wish to belittle the good we do, no matter how small, or simple, or seemingly frivolous or extravagant:  "Let her alone; why trouble ye her? she hath wrought a good work on me" (Mark 14:6).  No effort we make to reach out and bless others is ever wasted, for "inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these...ye have done it unto me" (Matthew 25:40).   When we choose "that good part," as Mary did, the blessings and joys stemming from our service "shall not be taken away from [us]" (Luke 10:42).

Symbolism in She Is Come Aforehand

Mary lovingly holds the "alabaster box" filled with ointment she has "preserved" (JST John 12:27) expressly for the purpose of anointing the Savior.  Alabaster is a translucent gypsum used by the ancients because it was considered an ideal material for preserving ointments.

The clay vessel at Mary's feet symbolizes Mary's worth as a daughter of God.  In the familiar words of Isaiah:  "But now, O Lord, thou art our father; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand" (Isaiah 64:8).  Being "centered" on the Savior, as Mary was, means that we are at the center of the potter's wheel of this existence, with the result that the Lord can fashion us to be whole and useful.

The red robe encircling the figure represents the Atonement.  The Hebrew word for Atonement and cloak, or covering is kaphar (see Olson 14).  Mary is literally enfolded within the power of the Atonement to heal, to lift, inspire, and strengthen.

Lavender is popularly purported to be the spikenard with which Mary anointed the Savior's head and feet.  Although ancient sources do not necessarily support this idea, John Gerard, in his Herbal published in 1633, refers to English lavender as "spike" of which a distillation of oil is made called the "oile of Spike" (Gerard 573).
© By Elspeth Young, All Rights Reserved. You may not print, copy, or reproduce this artwork or make derivative works from it without the prior written consent of the copyright holder. For permissions, please review our FAQ page.

From the Newsroom

Fine Art Framing: Al Young Studios' custom framing services for original artworks and giclees (overview)

By Al R. Young
We have framed our own artworks for more than 25 years, and during that time we have provided a variety of framing services to patrons upon request.  For various reasons--including constant change in the availability of moulding styles--we cannot offer off-the-shelf framing options or response times typically associated with such a service.  Of necessity, all of our framing projects are custom projects that are priced, completed, and billed accordingly.  For example, inasmuch as the Studios does not maintain a selection of off-the-shelf moulding options, moulding styles actually available at the time of a request for information about framing options must be researched... Read more »

Tags: Elspeth’s Hollyhocks, North Shore, Nasturtium, Wald Kirche, Old Dominion, Scabiosa, A Boy’s Prayer, Foxglove, Moonlit, Waiting, Untitled, Narcissus on beige paper, Narcissus on gray paper, July, The Almira, Columbine, Maine, Final Draft,

Women of the New Testament by Camille Fronk Olson features illustrations from Al Young Studios

By Al R. Young Women of the New Testament by Camille Fronk Olson is the companion volume to Women of the Old Testament, published by Deseret Book in 2009.

The New Testament volume features fifty six illustrations from the Artists of Al Young Studios, listed here under the Studios' fine art collections and portfolios to which they belong.

From the Women of the Bible Fine Art CollectionFull-color details (cropped images) from the following 29 paintings appeared in the book (in the order in which they appear here)... Read more »

Tags: I Shall Be Whole, I Say Unto Thee, Arise, The Windows Of Heaven, The Miracle Of Forgiveness, What Is Truth, Under Whose Wings Thou Art Come To Trust, Unto The City Of David, A Damsel Came To Hearken, By The Wayside, Living Water, Waiting...

Blank Art Diaries: Edition of At Home now available as spiral-bound art diary

By Al R. Young This blank-book journal sells for $32 (plus shipping) direct from Al Young Studios.  Printed in full color on heavy paper, the book is bound with black plastic spiral to rest flat when open.

At Home: A Personal Journal  features 128 original artworks consisting of 51 original oil paintings from the Artists of Al Young Studios, 44 images from the Studios' Limited Editions Collection, nine pen and ink drawings and block prints by Ashton, seven of Al's exquisitely crafted pencil drawings, and one lithograph from his private portfolios... Read more »

Tags: North Shore, Nasturtium, Wald Kirche, Scabiosa, Foxglove, Narcissus on beige paper, July, Columbine, Maine, Final Draft, Unfurling, Back Shore, Summer's End, Gifts of Morn, Black-eyed Susan, Land's End, Solitude, The Limberlost, Perdita,

Edition of Inspirations now available as spiral-bound art diary

By Al R. Young This blank-book journal sells for $32 (plus shipping) direct from Al Young Studios.  Printed in full color on heavy paper, the book is bound with black plastic spiral to rest flat when open.

Inspirations features 163 artworks along with 53 commentaries—written by the Artists of Al Young Studios especially for this journal—on such topics as their creative process, the creative environment of the Studios, technical approaches to their artwork, and inspiration from the works of other artists... Read more »

Tags: Untitled, In the Clearing, Anne Girl, Spring Rain, Journey's End, Enchanted Stillness, Bedtime Story, In The High Valley, Mountain Home, And I Will Not Deny The Christ, Sara Crewe, And My Soul Hungered, 3.00.0246.010, The Road To Melek, We...

2011 Deseret Book wall calendar features 13 oil paintings from Al Young Studios

By Al R. Young The 2011 Calendar: Women of the New Testament, published by Deseret Book, featured 13 original oil paintings from Al Young Studios, ten by Elspeth Young and three by Al R. Young.  Twelve of the paintings are part of Al Young Studios' Women of the Bible Fine Art Collection.  One painting is part of The Messiah Collection.

Commentaries (in the calendar) accompanying each painting provide a reference passage from the Bible, a summary of the character featured in the painting, and an artist's commentary concerning the painting itself... Read more »

Tags: I Shall Be Whole, One By One, The Windows Of Heaven, Living Water, The Substance Of Hope, Forsaking All, Blessed Is She That Believed, As It Began To Dawn, According To Thy Word, She Worketh Willingly With Her Hands, And Martha Served, She...

Illustration: She Is Come Aforehand

By Al R. Young
High-resolution digital copies are available from the Studios for use as illustrations.  Use the serial number—appearing below the thumbnail—in requesting permission from the Studios (see links at the bottom of this page for detail).

The correct form of attribution when publishing an image is specified in the license agreement issued to the publisher by Al Young Studios.Guidelines for requests to copy or publish artworks created by the Artists of Al Young Studios

Guidelines for commissioning Al Young Studios to create illustrations
Return to this portfolio
Browse all portfolios
Browse Newsroom articles about Illustration
The original image is available for sale, please contact us for details... Read more »

Tags: She Is Come Aforehand, 2010, People and Stories of the Bible

Elspeth C. Young completes new oil painting - "She Is Come Aforehand"

By Al R. Young She Is Come Aforehand is the newest oil painting to be added to the line of original artworks from Al Young Studios.

Click here to see a larger image of the new painting, read the artist's commentary, and look at the selection of prints--if any are available.... Read more »

Tags: She Is Come Aforehand, 2010, Elspeth C. Young, Legacy, News, Oil paintings and prints, The Messiah Art Collection, Women of the Bible Art Collection

Project Commentaries: And Martha Served and She Is Come Aforehand by Elspeth Young

By Elspeth C. Young
Elspeth recently finished the first half of a diptych depicting Mary and Martha of Bethany serving, as the two sisters are described in John 12:1-9. The finished painting of Martha shows this devoted disciple of Christ preparing the dinner at which her sister, Mary, anointed the Savior's feet with oil. Like Mary, whose service the Savior commended, Martha's offering of selfless service is also, "spoken of for a memorial of her" (John 12:9).

For more about the story and symbolism within this painting of Martha, please visit the following link:
And Martha Served

The second half of the diptych, showing Martha's sister, Mary, is well underway, pictured left... Read more »

Tags: And Martha Served, She Is Come Aforehand, 2010, Project commentaries, Women of the Bible Art Collection