One of the Pharisees asked Jesus to eat with him, and having entered the house of the Pharisee, Jesus reclined at the table. A woman who was sinful in the city, having learned that he reclined at the table in the house of the Pharisee, having brought an alabaster flask of perfumed oil, and having stood behind him at his feet weeping out loud with grief, began to rain tears down on his feet. She was wiping them with her hair and kissing them over and over and anointing them with the perfumed oil. Having seen this, the Pharisee who had invited Jesus said to himself "If he were a prophet, he would have known who and what the woman is who touches him, for she is a sinner." (Luke 7:36-39)

 

The Greek grammar emphasizes that she had planned it all out. She had learned where Jesus would be, brought oil, positioned herself behind him, and started to cry. The Greek word klaio means "to wail in mourning." It's what people did at funerals. It's what Peter did after he denied Jesus. It is an intense display of overwhelming emotion. I probably would have stopped there, hoping that Jesus might notice me in the background but not wanting to interrupt him or do anything that might make him uncomfortable, not presuming to be too close. But the sinful woman wasn't content to just show her emotions; she wanted to touch Jesus with them.

 

What kind of faith does it take to believe that an itinerant preacher whom you barely know wants literally to feel what you are feeling - you, a notorious sinner? Somehow, this woman understood Jesus’ desire to be emotionally close to us, his brothers and sisters. His warmth, kindness, and compassion - maybe something as simple as his beautiful smile - filled her with certainty that he would welcome her expression.  I think that she was expressing grief over what she had done, offering up her pain and apologizing to this wonderful man. She might have been trying to say "I'm sorry."  

What Jesus heard was "I love you."

 

Having turned to the woman, Jesus said to (the Pharisee), "Do you see this woman? I entered your house. You did not give me water so I could wash my own feet.  However, this woman has been raining tears down on my feet and wiping them with her hair. A single welcoming kiss you did not give me. However she has not stopped passionately kissing my feet over and over from the time I entered. You didn't anoint my head with olive oil. But she has has been anointing my feet with perfumed oil. I say to you that because of this grace, her many sins have been sent away because she loved much. However, he who is forgiven little, loves little. Those others reclining at the table began to say to themselves, "Who is this who sends away sins?" On top of this, Jesus said to the woman, "Your faith has saved you; go in peace." (Luke 7:44-50)

 

Water for washing off the dust of the road, oil to refresh the face from the hot Judean climate, and a welcoming kiss were traditionally offered to honored guests upon entering a home. Jesus’ Pharisee host has given Jesus none of these. He hasn't met even the basic requirements of hospitality. The woman has gone beyond in every area: not well water but her own tears, not regular olive oil but oil perfumed with expensive spices, not asking the guest to wash his own feet but doing it herself, a job normally reserved for a slave. She has welcomed Jesus at great personal cost, both monetarily and emotionally. She has risked damaging her reputation even further with her public display.  She has given to him out of her own body and her own passions. It is an invitation into the deepest and tenderest part of her heart - in front of everyone.

 

We see a red-faced, puffy-eyed, overly emotional woman covering a man’s feet with tears and mucus. Jesus sees a welcoming committee rolling out the red carpet. To us, it’s a mess; to God, it’s love.

 

Jesus is so moved that he forgives her sins on the spot. In front of everyone.

 

It doesn't say that she was forgiven because she had started to live a righteous life, that she had stopped sinning or sacrificed the right things or fulfilled the law or said what she was supposed to say or become a good person or succeeded in not blowing up at her co-worker even though she was really tempted or any of the things that we think we need to do to be close to God.  In fact, her life would make you think that God wouldn't want to be close - it never occurred to the Pharisee that Jesus might know who the woman was and still want to be touched. To express her love to Jesus, she overcame many obstacles: a terrible reputation, fear of ridicule, public embarrassment, social taboos. To me, the most amazing thing is her belief that Jesus wanted her at all.

 

Even if you're angry or you've been crying so hard that your face is covered with snot or you've been bitter for years or you want to scream because you're so disappointed, God is honored that you trust him enough to share what is deep inside. He feels so loved because you've welcomed him in. There's no mess so ugly that he isn't longing to help you clean it up. The sinful woman knew that Jesus wanted to be emotionally close to her, no matter who she was. You need to know this for yourself and for everyone, forever.

 

Me: I feel ashamed to tell you this.

God: “Robin, people have been angry with me for thousands of years. It's unlikely that whatever you're going to say is the worst thing I've ever heard. You can't make me feel bad about myself. I have indestructible self- esteem. Please tell me what is on your heart.”

One of the Pharisees asked Jesus to eat with him, and having entered the house of the Pharisee, Jesus reclined at the table. A woman who was sinful in the city, having learned that he reclined at the table in the house of the Pharisee, having brought an alabaster flask of perfumed oil, and having stood behind him at his feet weeping out loud with grief, began to rain tears down on his feet. She was wiping them with her hair and kissing them over and over and anointing them with the perfumed oil. Having seen this, the Pharisee who had invited Jesus said to himself "If he were a prophet, he would have known who and what the woman is who touches him, for she is a sinner." (Luke 7:36-39)

The Greek grammar emphasizes that she had planned it all out. She had learned where Jesus would be, brought oil, positioned herself behind him, and started to cry. The Greek word klaio means "to wail in mourning." It's what people did at funerals. It's what Peter did after he denied Jesus. It is an intense display of overwhelming emotion. I probably would have stopped there, hoping that Jesus might notice me in the background but not wanting to interrupt him or do anything that might make him uncomfortable, not presuming to be too close. But the sinful woman wasn't content to just show her emotions; she wanted to touch Jesus with them.

 

What kind of faith does it take to believe that an itinerant preacher whom you barely know wants literally to feel what you are feeling - you, a notorious sinner? Somehow, this woman understood Jesus’ desire to be emotionally close to us, his brothers and sisters. His warmth, kindness, and compassion - maybe something as simple as his beautiful smile - filled her with certainty that he would welcome her expression.  I think that she was expressing grief over what she had done, offering up her pain and apologizing to this wonderful man. She might have been trying to say "I'm sorry."  

 

What Jesus heard was "I love you."

 

Having turned to the woman, Jesus said to (the Pharisee), "Do you see this woman? I entered your house. You did not give me water so I could wash my own feet.  However, this woman has been raining tears down on my feet and wiping them with her hair. A single welcoming kiss you did not give me. However she has not stopped passionately kissing my feet over and over from the time I entered. You didn't anoint my head with olive oil. But she has has been anointing my feet with perfumed oil. I say to you that because of this grace, her many sins have been sent away because she loved much. However, he who is forgiven little, loves little. Those others reclining at the table began to say to themselves, "Who is this who sends away sins?" On top of this, Jesus said to the woman, "Your faith has saved you; go in peace." (Luke 7:44-50)

 

Water for washing off the dust of the road, oil to refresh the face from the hot Judean climate, and a welcoming kiss were traditionally offered to honored guests upon entering a home. Jesus’ Pharisee host has given Jesus none of these. He hasn't met even the basic requirements of hospitality. The woman has gone beyond in every area: not well water but her own tears, not regular olive oil but oil perfumed with expensive spices, not asking the guest to wash his own feet but doing it herself, a job normally reserved for a slave. She has welcomed Jesus at great personal cost, both monetarily and emotionally. She has risked damaging her reputation even further with her public display.  She has given to him out of her own body and her own passions. It is an invitation into the deepest and tenderest part of her heart - in front of everyone.

 

We see a red-faced, puffy-eyed, overly emotional woman covering a man’s feet with tears and mucus. Jesus sees a welcoming committee rolling out the red carpet. To us, it’s a mess; to God, it’s love.

 

Jesus is so moved that he forgives her sins on the spot. In front of everyone.

 

It doesn't say that she was forgiven because she had started to live a righteous life, that she had stopped sinning or sacrificed the right things or fulfilled the law or said what she was supposed to say or become a good person or succeeded in not blowing up at her co-worker even though she was really tempted or any of the things that we think we need to do to be close to God.  In fact, her life would make you think that God wouldn't want to be close - it never occurred to the Pharisee that Jesus might know who the woman was and still want to be touched. To express her love to Jesus, she overcame many obstacles: a terrible reputation, fear of ridicule, public embarrassment, social taboos. To me, the most amazing thing is her belief that Jesus wanted her at all.

 

Even if you're angry or you've been crying so hard that your face is covered with snot or you've been bitter for years or you want to scream because you're so disappointed, God is honored that you trust him enough to share what is deep inside. He feels so loved because you've welcomed him in. There's no mess so ugly that he isn't longing to help you clean it up. The sinful woman knew that Jesus wanted to be emotionally close to her, no matter who she was. You need to know this for yourself and for everyone, forever.

 

Me: I feel ashamed to tell you this.

God: “Robin, people have been angry with me for thousands of years. It's unlikely that whatever you're going to say is the worst thing I've ever heard. You can't make me feel bad about myself. I have indestructible self- esteem. Please tell me what is on your heart.”

Sharing Your Emotions Is Beautiful Even if the Emotions Are Not Beautiful to You

© 2017 by Spirit Said. Proudly created with Wix.com

  • White Facebook Icon
  • White Instagram Icon
  • White Pinterest Icon
  • White Twitter Icon
  • White YouTube Icon