Luke 7:41 “A certain moneylender had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty.
Luke 7:42 When they could not pay, he cancelled the debt of both. Now which of them will love him more?”
Luke 7:43 Simon answered, “The one, I suppose, for whom he cancelled the larger debt.” And he said to him, “You have judged rightly.”
Luke 7:44 “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.
Luke 7:45 You gave me no kiss, but from the time I came in she has not ceased to kiss my feet.
Luke 7:46 You did not anoint my head with oil, but she has anointed my feet with ointment.
Luke 7:47 Therefore I tell you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven—for she loved much. But he who is forgiven little, loves little.”
Do you know anybody that has really helped you out? I mean like not your grandma who always had a cookie and not that neighbor that brings your dog back every few weeks without grumbling about your junky fence.
I mean somebody that when you run into them at the grocery store, you walk away and say “That guy, kids, is the guy that helped Mommy and Daddy keep our house.”
The woman that came in and washed Jesus’ feet with her hair and thank-tears didn’t care about anything else except what Jesus had done for her. She didn’t care about ugly crying in front of people. She didn’t care about walking right into a house where she would feel super embarrassed and shamed.
All she knew was the love of Jesus.
Simon the Pharisee, however, knew a lot of other things. He knew that Jesus was a notable Rabbi, otherwise he wouldn’t have invited Him to dinner. He knew how to spot a sinful woman from a mile away. We don’t know how he knew how to do that.
As an honorable Pharisee, he also knew an important part of guest protocol was to wash the feet of an honored guest. He probably wouldn’t do it himself, but he’d at least have one of his kids or a household staff person offer Jesus some water, a rag, and a towel when He came to their house.
Washing feet was a thing as normal as offering someone your bathroom when they arrive at your house after a 7 hour drive. Washing feet was as normal as asking if someone has any allergies before you invite them over for dinner.
But Simon didn’t do any of that. He invited Jesus to dinner, yes, but he didn’t roll out the welcome mat. He didn’t great Jesus with the customary kiss on the cheek that a man would do to show another man that he was glad to see him. It was like he wouldn’t even shake hands.
Simon didn’t need Jesus to come over for dinner, but this woman needed Jesus in order to survive.
To one of them, Jesus was just another glossy 8×10 to hang on the wall of famous people. Nothing more than a trinket or a name to drop.
To the other, He was the very substance of life. He was the One who could take away decades of guilt and shame and put you in the front row seat with a loving God.
Yesterday, I asked you to be Simon in this story, but today, let’s be front row forgiven by Jesus.