Faith, Forgiveness, Lessons from Jesus

Humble Faith

STORIES OF FAITH – The Forgiven Woman

Luke 7:50 – And he said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

Jesus has been invited to eat at the home of a Pharisee named Simon. This invitation did not come from a place of honesty or sincerity but was more for show to prove that Jesus was a fraud in one way or another. He certainly had no genuine respect for Jesus as he didn’t greet him as a friend or peer or indeed even as a proper guest. There was no kiss on the cheek, no water for his feet and no oil for his head; the customary traditions of a hospitable host had purposely been omitted. This was nothing short of insulting.

Among those present at Simon’s home was a woman who had found forgiveness through Jesus, forgiveness that she never imagined was even possible, forgiveness that she knew she didn’t deserve. Nevertheless, she had received redemption from God and the love and joy that she felt was immeasurable. She heard that Jesus had been invited to eat at the home of a Pharisee named Simon and she didn’t want to miss this opportunity to express her heartfelt thanks to the one who had changed her life.

She brought perfume with her, probably to anoint his hands after they had been washed but that had not happened. Instead, her Lord had been humiliated. Now he reclined, unwashed, at the table and she could not help but weep at the indignity being imposed upon him. Jesus’ feet were soaked with her tears but having no towel, she loosened her hair and use it to dry them. She kissed them, showing him personal respect and then anointed them with the perfume to show her immense gratitude.

Simon feels justified in his treatment of Jesus as he has just proven that he isn’t a prophet at all. Simon’s first mistake was in judging the woman to be still a sinner, so Jesus proceeds to tell him the parable of the moneylender and the two debtors. Simon’s second mistake was not recognising himself or the woman in this story. His third mistake was in failing to acknowledge his own sin and receive the forgiveness being offered.

In order that no-one would make the same mistake in mis-judging this woman, Jesus turned and said to her, “Your sins are forgiven” and I imagine him emphasizing the ‘are’. Then he told her, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.” She no longer had anything to fear, her forgiveness was sealed.

No matter what your sin is or was, if you have received God’s forgiveness then your redemption is sealed and you have nothing to fear.

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