Summary: Examines the people at this event.

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“The Alabaster Box”

September 30, 2012

Luke 7:36-50

36 When one of the Pharisees invited Jesus to have dinner with him, he went to the Pharisee’s house and reclined at the table. 37 A woman in that town who lived a sinful life learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee’s house, so she came there with an alabaster jar of perfume. 38 As she stood behind him at his feet weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them and poured perfume on them.

39 When the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, “If this man were a prophet, he would know who is touching him and what kind of woman she is—that she is a sinner.”

40 Jesus answered him, “Simon, I have something to tell you.”

“Tell me, teacher,” he said.

41 “Two people owed money to a certain moneylender. One owed him five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42 Neither of them had the money to pay him back, so he forgave the debts of both. Now which of them will love him more?”

43 Simon replied, “I suppose the one who had the bigger debt forgiven.”

“You have judged correctly,” Jesus said.

44 Then he turned toward the woman and said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I came into your house. You did not give me any water for my feet, but she wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. 45 You did not give me a kiss, but this woman, from the time I entered, has not stopped kissing my feet. 46 You did not put oil on my head, but she has poured perfume on my feet. 47 Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven—as her great love has shown. But whoever has been forgiven little loves little.”

48 Then Jesus said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”

49 The other guests began to say among themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?”

50 Jesus said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

This is such a fascinating event in Jesus’ life. The obvious thing is the woman and the alabaster box of perfume – but there is so much more. Let’s spend a little time in studying this well known event.

First of all, there is Simon. We know a little bit about Simon, the one whose house Jesus went to. Luke records him as being a Pharisee. A Pharisee was a very devoted follower of God. They sought to be pure and pious. They considered themselves to be especially loved of God. It appears to me that at their beginning they probably had good and pure intentions. But, as so often happens with second hand holiness, the emphasis was not on relationship with God – but on rules – as a way of pleasing God. And as they got good at keeping those man-made rules – pride crept in. Spiritual pride kills relationships – relationship with people and relationship with God. Simon was a part of that.

But the point I want you to see about Simon was that he belonged to a very holy and religious sect. He was a very religious man. He was well educated in the Scriptures. He had some very definite ideas of man’s relationship with God. Understand this about Simon - he loved God. He was proud of his religion. Is this why He invited Jesus to His home? Maybe!

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