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Summary: The word, kiss, appears some 37 times in the Bible, the first being in Genesis... a kiss of betrayal.

SERMON: SPIRITUAL OSCULATION: KISSING THE FEET OF JESUS

Luke 7:36-50

One of the Pharisees asked Him over for a meal. He went to the Pharisee’s house and sat down at the dinner table. Just then a woman of the village, the town harlot, having learned that Jesus was a guest in the home of the Pharisee, came with a bottle of very expensive perfume and stood at His feet, weeping, raining tears on His feet. Letting down her hair, she dried His feet, kissed them, and anointed them with the perfume. When the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, “If this Man was the Prophet I thought He was, He would have known what kind of woman this is who is falling all over Him.”

Jesus said to Him, “Simon, I have something to tell you.”

“Oh? Tell me.”

“Two men were in debt to a banker. One owed five hundred silver pieces, the other fifty. Neither of them could pay up, and so the banker canceled both debts. Which of the two would be more grateful?”

Simon answered, “I suppose the one who was forgiven the most.”

“That’s right,” said Jesus. Then turning to the woman, but speaking to Simon, He said, “Do you see this woman? I came to your home; you provided no water for My feet, but she rained tears on My feet and dried them with her hair. You gave Me no greeting, but from the time I arrived she hasn’t quit kissing My feet. You provided nothing for freshening up, but she has soothed My feet with perfume. Impressive, isn’t it? She was forgiven many, many sins, and so she is very, very grateful. If the forgiveness is minimal, the gratitude is minimal.”

Then He spoke to her: “I forgive your sins.”

That set the dinner guests talking behind His back: “Who does He think He is, forgiving sins!”

He ignored them and said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you. Go in peace.”

The story that Don Scott read for us a few moments ago is, to me, one of the most powerful stories in the Scriptures. it has so many ways to approach it, that one hardly knows how to begin. I didn't flip coin to decide the approach, but I suppose I could have. What I I finally did decide was to look at kisses in the Bible, and see where that might lead us.

The word, kiss, appears some 37 times in the Bible, the first being in Genesis... a kiss of betrayal. That is the story where Rebecca and Jacob conspired to trick Isaac into giving the blessing to Jacob, rather than the rightful one, Esau. Isaac asked Jacob to come near and kiss him ... so he could smell the clothing to make sure it was Esau. What a way to introduce such a word of beauty and sweetness into the Biblican narrative!

The next scene where we see the word, kiss, is when Jacob saw Rachel ... the most beautiful sight his eyes had ever beheld! Read it in Genesis 29:

While Jacob was in conversation with them, Rachel came up with her father’s sheep. She was the shepherd. The moment Jacob spotted Rachel, daughter of Laban his mother’s brother, saw her arriving with his uncle Laban’s sheep, he went and single-handedly rolled the stone from the mouth of the well and watered the sheep of his uncle Laban. Then he kissed Rachel and broke into tears.

Now, that is more like it! I don't know what Rachel thought about all that, but she sure tickled Jacob's fancy. I mean, really! To agree to work 7 years for her, only to be betrayed, and then agree to work another 7 years for her? If that isn't love, then the ocean is dry, there's no stars in the sky, and sparrows can't fly ....

The next kiss I want to mention again involves Jacob, but this time, it's a bit different. He is going to meet his brother, Esau, after an absence of about 20 years .... and is frightened out of his mind, thinking Esau will harm him. But, no! Heed the Bible: Genesis 33:1-4 ... "He led the way and, as he approached his brother, bowed seven times, honoring his brother. But Esau ran up and embraced him, held him tight and kissed him."

The kiss of forgiveness, welcome, and glad to see ya, Bro! I love this one, too!

There's a number of kisses as history goes forward ... kisses between Joseph and his brothers, between Joseph and his father, again, Jacob .... (boy! Jacob sure was involved in a lot of Biblical osculation (that's a fancy word for kissing). Kisses between Aaron and Moses, kisses between Moses and his father-in-law .... and then, we jump to the book of Ruth 1:8-9 ....After a short while on the road, Naomi told her two daughters-in-law, “Go back. Go home and live with your mothers. And may God treat you as graciously as you treated your deceased husbands and me. May God give each of you a new home and a new husband!” She kissed them and they cried openly."

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