“And he said to the woman, ‘Your faith has saved you; go in peace.’”
— Luke 7:50
ANOINTING THE BROKEN
Jesus is invited by Simon, a well-known Pharisee, to his house for dinner. Soon after Jesus arrives, a woman of questionable repute also arrives at Simon’s house. She heard Jesus was going to be there, and because of her low social status, she had a limited opportunity to meet with him. This was her chance. A chance to be redeemed. She’d had a difficult life; some of her bad luck was her fault and some the circumstances of life. She desperately wanted to change the course of her life. A compelling feeling inside of her knew Jesus was the answer. She only had to barge into Simon’s house and move quickly.
She arrives at the house with a jar of expensive ointment and quickly walks over to Jesus. Standing behind him, she begins to weep. Weeping hard enough to wet Jesus’s feet, which she wipes with her hair. As she is bent over wiping her tears from Jesus’s feet, she begins kissing his feet and applies ointment. She is in front of God crying and in complete submission. Completely and fully she bares her soul.
Simon the Pharisee, seeing all this, thinks to himself, if this man were a prophet, he would have known who and what kind of woman this is who is touching him—that she is a sinner. Jesus, knowing what he is thinking, asks the man, “A certain creditor had two debtors, one owed five hundred Denarii, and the other owes five hundred Denarii. When they could not pay, he canceled the debts for both of them. Now which of them will love him more?”
Simon replies, “I suppose the one for whom he canceled the greater debt.”
Jesus says, “You have judged rightly. Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave me no water for my feet, but she bathed my feet with her tears and dried them with her hair. You gave me no kiss, but from the time I came in she has not stopped kissing my feet. You did not anoint my head with oil, but she has anointed my feet with ointment.”
Jesus goes on to say, “Her sins, which were many, have been forgiven; hence she has shown great love. But the one to whom little is forgiven, loves little.”
Jesus then calls the woman over and tells her, “Your sins are forgiven.” This surprises the other dinner guests, who remark, “Who is this who even forgives sin?”
Ignoring this comment, Jesus looks back at the woman and says, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.” -Luke 7:41–50 Her brokenness healed. She now knew that despite her lowly and difficult life, God loved her. The deep yearning to receive God’s acceptance and change her life had been answered. This yearning to see God and be with God, created a flood emotion that rose to the surface and expressed itself through tears and adoration.
Blessings, until next time,
Bruce L. Hartman