Interruptions seemed to follow Jesus everywhere. He couldn’t avoid them, nor did He try. It seems He even welcomed interruptions – from all kinds of people! They’d drop form ceilings, elbow through crowds, yell to Him or be so bold as to grab His garment. Wherever Jesus was, they were: the sick, the sorry and the scandalous.
The residence of Simon would also be subject to interruptions once Jesus was in the house. “High maintenance” types would claw at the window or cry at the door. But none would dare enter. After all, Pharisees had boundaries, and they were to be respected.
A Harlot at the Feet of Jesus
Surprisingly, there was one who did enter this holy habitat. Everyone knew her. Nobody liked her. She was the type that guys write about on bathroom walls. And with all her loud sobbing, she certainly drew attention from others who came to see the mysterious man of Galilee.
With reputation in tow, the harlot boldly approached Jesus. His feet were unwashed. For shame, Simon should have saw to this. He didn’t. Now, the village tramp would. Kneeling before the Lord, she washed His feet with her own tears. With her own hair she dried them. And with her own lips she kissed them. She did not cease from kissing the feet of Jesus.
Simon would not tolerate such despicable behavior in his respectable abode. This had to stop! The very idea! And Jesus! He seemed to enjoy the attention. Shows what kind of man He is! “If He were truly a prophet,” Simon muttered, “He’d know better! He would know what a sinner this woman is!”
For good reason, we don’t care to be lumped in with the leaven of the Pharisees. They opposed everything Jesus stood for, and all that we hold dear as His followers. But, let’s think through this for a moment. If you or I were in Simon’s shoes, would our reaction be any different?
Take a good look at this woman. You’ve seen her walk the streets. You’ve heard the stories. She’s the talk of the locker room. There’s a name for gals like this, and she’s worked hard to earn it. Now, imagine her barging into your home. What are your thoughts as she slips the shoes off your dinner guest?
The woman in our story was a known sinner. However, it was the sin of that Pharisee Simon that Jesus spoke out against. It is the sin known to crowd the heart with self. It puffs up the head, causing one to rate others on a spiritual scorecard. It knows little of mercy and grace. You may have guessed by now. Yes, it’s the sin that tops God’s most hated list – pride.
The proud do not bow. Their nose is too high in the air. They never admit fault. It is beneath them. As for Simon, he would not bow to Jesus. Nor would he lower himself to His feet. For this reason, his sin stuck like scum to a pot. But there was hope for the harlot. She did bow. She fell to the Lord’s feet. And because she did, her life was forever changed.
“Therefore I say to you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much.” (Luke 7:47a)
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Calvary Chapel of Austin Church
1601 Pecan St., Pflugerville, TX 78660