A Shepherd’s Heart:
How Deep Is Your Love…
Turning toward the woman, He said to Simon, "Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave Me no water for my feet, but she has wet My feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. You gave Me no kiss; but she, since the time I came in, has not ceased to kiss my feet. You did not anoint My head with oil, but she anointed My feet with perfume. For this reason I say to you, her sins, which are many, have been forgiven, for she loved much; but he who is forgiven little, loves little." Then He said to her, "Your sins have been forgiven." Those who reclining at the table with Him began to say to themselves, "Who is this man who even forgives sins?" And He said to the woman, "Your faith has saved you, go in peace." -Luke 7:44-50 (NASB)
Have you ever wondered why some people seem to be "sold out" to Jesus and others seem to just "casually" follow Him. Maybe there is a truth hidden within this passage. Let’s ponder that thought.
The passage above is the continuation of teachable moment that Jesus seized while having been invited to dine in a Pharisee’s home. So to be fair in understanding, we must put this section in proper context.
Jesus had entered the Pharisee’s home and taken his place at the table. This woman, identified as a woman from the city, a sinner, upon hearing that Jesus was in the home, brought a flask of ointment and stood at his feet and began to wet His feet with her tears and wipe His feet with her hair and pouring ointment on His feet while kissing them as well. This action caused the Pharisee, Simon, to think thoughts to himself that revealed his judgmental heart both toward Jesus and this woman.
Jesus, in response to Simon’s thoughts (whether they were actually verbalized or not) said something to Simon. He posed to Simon a question: “A Certain moneylender had two debtors. One owed him five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. When they could not pay, he cancelled the debt of both. Now which of them will love him more?” (Luke 7:41-42)
Simon’s response was of course the right response according to Jesus. For Simon answered, “The one, I suppose, for whom he cancelled the larger debt.” (Luke 7:43)
It was following this exchange that Jesus called attention to the actions of the sinful woman in comparison to the Pharisee, Simon. Jesus was teaching a great truth for him as well as for us.
At the heart of this story we see the issue of sin. Not so much in the view of sin from God’s perspective, but rather from our perspective.
I wonder if what Christ was trying to help Simon to see was this (Imagine with me): “Simon, you too are a sinner, however you do not seem to understand that your sin is just as severe as the sin of this woman. Because she views her sin as detestable to me, she cannot cease to pour out her love for me. And you, too proud to even consider yourself a sinner, have not expressed your love for me at all.” WOW! That hurts to think about!
So I guess the question that would come as we ponder this particular story in Scripture might be, “How do you view your sin?” Just a thought! The way we perceive our sin may indeed have something to do with how deep our love for our Savior really is.
I pray that we all understand the importance of our need for forgiveness from our Savior who died to set us free. I pray also that we be willing to acknowledge our sin, confess our sin, repent from our sin, and serve our Savior by loving Him with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength, and love our neighbors as ourselves.