Jesus said to the woman, “Because you believed, you are saved from your sins. Go in peace.” –Luke 7:50
It was an invitation of public statement.
A Pharisee, respected religious leader, asked Jesus to eat with him so He went.
It wasn’t really to honor Jesus.
There was an agenda – the Bible doesn’t say but when I read the story, it becomes apparent the Pharisee wasn’t about knowing Jesus.
He didn’t want to sit at the Master’s feet.
He didn’t believe.
Actions speak louder than words.
You know a tree by it’s fruit.
Hell is full of sincere, religious people, never born again and heaven is full of immoral people who repented and believed Christ. --Steve Lawson Click To Tweet
Then Jesus turned toward the woman and said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? When I came into your house, you gave me no water for my feet, but she washed My feet with her tears and dried them with her hair. You gave me no kiss of greeting, but she has been kissing my feet since I came in. You did not put oil on my head, but she poured perfume on My feet.
Religion doesn’t save anyone….Jesus does.
This woman, a known prostitute, knows it.
She doesn’t care she’s not on the guest list.
She crashes the party…in an upright, uptight, socially acceptable religious leader’s home.
She doesn’t do it quietly.
In desperation, she wails.
Lets down her hair – completely unacceptable in her day…for a woman to let down her hair in public was scandalous and disreputable.
She doesn’t care.
In desperate need, she makes a scene.
Wailing in front of the proper dinner party guests, she begins to wash Jesus’ feet with her tears.
Dry them with her hair.
Kiss His feet.
His human, earthly, dirty feet.
Pours out expensive perfume.
Perfume that most likely cost every cent she had.
What others think or how they view this moment doesn’t matter.
She only has eyes for Jesus.
Her need and belief outweigh her pride.
The host responds in judgment of the woman…and Jesus.
Through worldly eyes he uses the moment to reinforce his own views and unbelief.
“If Jesus were a prophet, he would know that the woman touching him is a sinner!”
For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength. Brothers and sisters, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth. But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.” 1 Corinthians 1:25
My human eyes see the prostitute and cringe.
She’s dirty and smelly, her clothes and person are out of place.
I want the party to go well – impress Jesus and solidify my social and religious standing.
My “best” efforts are dirty rags.
God is a supernatural God – He relates in supernatural ways.
He invites me to join Him in the work He’s doing in the world.
I must choose.
Walk by faith, by His Spirit or in self and the world.
I can’t serve two masters.
To hear the Spirit, I must create an environment for Him to speak.
The Word tells me how – get rid of all malice, anger and envy.
Surrender self and allow His fruit to grow.
Align my heart and mind with the Lord’s through prayer and His Word.
Be a doer and not a hearer.
Faith grows as I practice…as I do.
I step out and God meets me there.
In His counterclockwise upside down kingdom, the first is last and the rich poor.
He doesn’t call the equipped, He equips the called.
Love for Jesus compels me to reach out, love others. As I do it, Holy Spirit gives me words, direction and guidance.
Not in advance.
To sit the bench is to miss the adventure.
Christianity is not a spectator sport.
Jesus is all or not at all.
He says those who aren’t with Him are against Him.
The fence is a lie.
Faith without works is dead.
If I believe Jesus is who He says He is and the gospel is true, it compels me to action.
There is no condemnation in Christ Jesus – it isn’t a guilt thing.
We are all eternal beings with an eternal destination.
If the Bible is true and Jesus is real then without Him that destination is hell.
These are facts I had to face as a complacent, comfortable Christian who bought the lie.
The lie I’m saved by grace and nothing’s required – I don’t live in Africa, Isis isn’t at my front door and the Holy Spirit hasn’t told me to do anything….lucky me.
I love God, said the prayer, attend church – I can give you a resume of service.
I called it blessed.
Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your Name and in Your Name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from Me, you evildoers!” Matthew 7:22-23
It’s not what I do, it’s who I know.
It’s not my works but the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross.
Jesus says “If you believe in Me you will not perish but have everlasting life”
James 2:19 says “You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that – and shudder.”
There is belief that is knowing and belief that causes action.
Saving belief moves me to action.
If I believe the plane will crash – truly believe it in my mind and heart, I’m not getting on the plane.
When I believe Jesus is who He says He is and my God mission is to be light in the world and become His life giving delivery system, I crash parties.
I become willing to upset people and make a scene.
I wash and kiss feet.
Faith isn’t a social club or a spiritual spa.
It’s not the moral majority.
It’s a call to action, an enlisting in God’s army.
Learning to wield the sword of the spirit, a weapon of truth and love.
Love without truth is hypocrisy.Satan doesn't care if you read your Bible or go to church as long as you don't live it. Click To Tweet
So where’s the grace?
Grace isn’t a hall pass.
It isn’t permission to ignore God and His commands.
It’s a gift for those who sincerely seek Him.
Walk with Him.
Step out and blow it.
It turns my mess into a message.
Brings glory to God.
In my weakness He is strong.
I can do nothing apart from Him.
In His mercy, He forgives and encourages me to keep going, try again.
Love covers a multitude of sin.
There’s nothing He can’t redeem.
I’m not called to be like other Christians, I’m called to be like Christ.
Love my enemies.
Leave the 99.
Heal the sick.
Forgive 70 times 7
Fast, pray and give.
Cast out Demons.
Set captives free.
To walk with Jesus is to face rejection, persecution and ridicule.
He tells us to count the cost.
He says the world will hate me because it hates Him.
But I can rejoice – my troubles are light and momentary.
I can rejoice for He has overcome the world.
Father God, Lord Jesus, Thank you for your amazing love. You love me so much, you sent Yourself to die and pay the price I could never pay. Thank you for your Word that tells me everything I need to live life for You. Thank you for the people places and things you send into my life to shake it. Shake it upside down for my eternal good. Thank you for not letting me stay sedated in comfort and condemnation. You are my King, Jesus and eternity with you is worth anything I must sacrifice or give up on this earth. Fill me with Your Spirit. Help me be bold and courageous – to proclaim you everywhere to everyone. Help me be salt and light – set captives free. Help me to love you first and best and most, love my neighbor as myself. Thank you that my only responsibility is to be faithful – You do the work – You bring the increase. Thank you for the example of Jesus and how He loved people but always told them the truth. Grow me, change me, conform me to Your character. In Jesus’ Precious, Saving Name, Amen.