Summary: A Sinner worships Jesus without speaking a word, but her tears speak what is in her heart.
TITLE: Worshipping Without Words
TEXT: Luke 7:36-50
INTRO: Now, we look at another story that is recorded only in Luke. Sometimes this story gets confused with one in the other gospels, where Mary of Bethany anointed Jesus, but the two incidents take place at different times, in different places, and involve different people.
While ministering in the region of Galilee, Jesus was invited to dinner, probably in the town of Capernaum. The characters in the story are as follows:
I. THE HOST (v.36)
1. Simon was one of the commonest of names in the NT:
-Simon the Zealot,
-Simon the father of Judas,
-Simon of Cyrene,
-Simon the sorcerer
-Simon the tanner,
-Simon the leper, etc.
2. This Simon was a Pharisee
B. The Pharisees Were Opposed to Jesus
1. So, why did he invite Jesus to dinner?
2. Possibly he invited Him just out of courtesy,
or to find fault with His words
II. A NAMELESS WOMAN (vs.37-38)
A. She Appeared at the Dinner
1. She is described as a sinner
2. She had not been invited, but came to see Jesus
# (some commentators say) "It was the custom that when a Rabbi was at a meal all kinds of people came in to listen to his wisdom."
3. She carried an alabaster "box" (KJ)
or (in other translations) "a flask"
# Alabaster was a type of fine marble found in Egypt. It was carved in the shape of a flask with a thin neck. It was filled with perfume or ointment and the neck sealed. When ready for use, the neck of the container could be snapped and the contents poured out.
B. Her Worship
1. May have already met Jesus & been forgiven
2. She was weeping tears of sorrow and gratitude
3. She washed His feet with her tears, kissed them &
anointed them with the ointment
4. She didn't say a word but her actions spoke what was
in her heart
III. JESUS RESPONSE
A. To Simon (vs.39-47)
1. Simon was thinking judgmental thoughts, but Jesus
read his mind (39)
2. He told him a parable about two debtors being
3. Asked him which man would love the most (42)
4. Simon, unwilling to commit himself, gives an
ambiguous answer (43)
5. Then, Jesus contrasts the behavior of Simon and the
Unnamed Woman (44-47)
-One was self-righteous - One was self-aware
-One loved little - One loved much
B. To the Woman (vs.48-50)
1. Jesus spoke to the greatest words we can ever hear
(v.48) "And he said unto her, Thy sins are forgiven."
2. Forgiveness brings joy and peace
(v.50) "And he said to the woman, Thy faith hath saved
thee; go in peace"
#A mother once approached Napoleon seeking a pardon for her son. The emperor replied that the young man had committed the same crime twice and justice demanded death. “But I don’t ask for justice,” the mother explained, “I plead for mercy.” “But your son does not deserve mercy,” Napoleon replied. “Sir,” the woman cried, “it would not be mercy if he deserved it, and mercy is all that I ask for.” “Well then,” the emperor said, “I will have mercy.” And he spared the woman’s son.
3. The Unnamed woman didn't receive forgiveness
because she loved
4. She loved because she had been forgiven
(Eph.2:8-9) For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.
Those who weep over their sins and confess them will soon weep tears of joy and gratitude.