Yesterday we read a story about Jesus having a meal at the home of Simon, a Pharisees or religious lawyer. A woman, known to be a sinner (this is probably a euphemism for prostitute), came and washed his feet, and anointed them with oil. This was over the top hospitality, that Simon had not shown Jesus. Simon was questioning this when Jesus perceived his thoughts, and said it was because the woman had been forgiven so much, and Simon hadn’t, that they showed such different kinds of love for Jesus.
We left off with the people at Simon’s house realizing that Jesus thinks he can forgive sins.
They ask, “Who is this, who even forgives sins?”
They were just realizing what the woman already knew.
Jesus is not just a man, he’s God. He’s hurt whenever someone sins, rebels against God’s plan for them and this world, not just when someone hurts his human body.
He is God, in the flesh, here on earth. He really has the power to forgive sins. He really has the power to turn someone’s life around. He really has the power to reconnect us with the God we turned away from in sin.
This woman knew it. She’d been rescued from the life she’d been lying, and all its emptiness. She knew how badly she needed Jesus. She knew she was so far from every following God’s law perfectly to earn her way back to God, so God coming to her seemed like the most incredible news ever.
She was so aware of the sin in her life, she was that much more thankful when it was forgiven, evident in her actions that day. Much sin, forgiven, leads to much love for Jesus.
Simon on the other hand seems unaware of the sin in his life. He hasn’t even noticed that he’s failed to be hospitable, he was so busy judging and testing other people against his own standard. He shows no love to Jesus, as a result. Little sin, unforgiven, leads to no love for Jesus.
Challenge:Our challenge is to identify whatever sin is in our lives, confess it, repent/turn from it, and begin loving Jesus instead of our sin. I’ll give you some time to reflect on this, then I’ll pray a confession prayer you can pray along with me.
Confession: Merciful God, we have sinned in what we have thought and said, in the wrong we have done and in the good we have not done. We have sinned in ignorance, in weakness and through our own deliberate fault. We are truly sorry. We repent and turn to you. Forgive us, for our Saviour Christ’s sake, and renew our lives to the glory of your name. Amen.
God’s Forgiveness: Lord of mercy, Grant us pardon and peace; That cleansed from our sins and with peace in our hearts, we may be free to serve you; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Meeting with a Group? Your discussion questions are in this week’s Group Study Guide[permalink append=”#comments”]Discuss the Challenge[/permalink]