Lessons from a Sinful Woman
31 Days of Women from Scripture
Show Honor with Humility
Day Fourteen: Lessons from a “sinful” woman
Do you think there is a connection between showing honor to someone and your own humility?
In today’s lesson, I want to look at that. Can we really show honor to someone if we do not have an humble view of ourselves?
In Luke 7:36-50 we are told of an event that took place when Jesus dined in the house of a Pharisee named Simon (Lk. 7:36, 40).
This man invited Jesus to eat with him and Jesus agreed.
When they were at the table, a woman from the city came into the Pharisee’s house bringing with her an “alabaster vial of perfume”.
This woman proceeded to weep so much that she was able to wash Jesus’ feet with her tears. She wiped them dry with her hair. She then kissed His feet and anointed them with the perfume she had brought (Lk. 7:38).
Simon thought to himself that if Jesus was really a prophet, then He’d know that this woman was a sinner (Lk. 7:39).
In response to Simon’s thought, Jesus tells Simon a parable about two debtors. Both debtors were forgiven their debts, but one was forgiven of a much greater debt than the other. Jesus asked Simon which of the debtors will love the one who forgave them the most. Simon answers that most likely the one forgiven of the greater debt. Jesus agrees with Simon’s answer.
Jesus proceeds to show how this woman who is a “sinner” showed Him honor where Simon had not. Simon was the host, yet he had not offered water for Jesus to wash His feet, he had not greeted Him with a respectful kiss, and he had not offered anointing to Jesus’ head.
The woman on the other hand had provided all these things out of her own humility. Her tears, her kisses, and her expensive perfume came from her recognition of who she was and Who Jesus was.
Simon had failed to do either. Here he had invited Jesus into his home, what should have been an honor. But by his questioning of Jesus’ authority and his low opinion of the woman, he showed that he had no humility himself.
This woman shows us how to show honor with humility.
She sought out Jesus – but not only for her own benefit. She sought Him out so that she might do something FOR Him. She saw Him worthy of honor.
Jesus says that by her faith and the actions she took because of it, her many sins were forgiven (Lk. 7:50).
How many times are we more like Simon than we are this nameless woman?
All of us are sinners (Rom. 3:23).
Do we invite Jesus into our homes and our lives because we realize we have a need or because we think it brings honor to us to do so?
Are we like the Pharisee who prayed to himself rather than God (Lk. 18:11)? “God, I thank You that I am not like other people. I fast twice a week. I pay tithes.”
Or are we like this woman, who sees Jesus as One who should be met with tears of our humility and bringing gifts that we value higher than ourselves?
She didn’t come asking for forgiveness. She came bringing anointing. Anointing shows His being set apart. She didn’t question Who He was like Simon did. She knew.
Do we know? Are we showing honor to Jesus in a way that recognizes what it means to honor Him at all?
“This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well-pleased.” Mt. 3:17
“But it is not this way among you, but whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant; and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be slave to all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.” Mk. 10:43-45
“For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more than, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him.” Rom. 5:6-9
He is worthy. There must be no doubt about that.
If you realize this, show honor with humility.
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