Then turning toward the woman, Jesus explains to Simon the basic differences between the woman and him and their understanding of forgiveness.
“Do you see this woman,” Jesus asks? Jesus then begins to compare their outward behavior with their inner understanding. True worship is displayed by an understanding of true forgiveness. The woman understands this. Simon does not.
Jesus says to Simon, “I entered your house; you gave me no water for my feet, but she has wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. I entered … no water—a compliment to guests. Was this “much love?” Was it any love at all?
You gave me no kiss, but from the time I came in she has not ceased to kiss my feet. There was no kiss or greeting. How much love was here? Was there any at all?
You did not anoint my head with oil, but she has anointed my feet with ointment. This was a common behavior of anointing someone who had been traveling in the hot, Middle Eastern sun. The ointment would have been common olive oil in contrast with the woman’s “ointment” or aromatic balsam.
One commentator writes, “What evidence was thus afforded of any feeling which forgiveness prompts? Our Lord speaks this with delicate politeness, as if hurt at these inattentions of His host, which though not invariably shown to guests, were the customary marks of studied respect and regard. The inference is plain—only one of the debtors was really forgiven, though in the first instance, to give room for the play of withheld feelings, the forgiveness of both is supposed in the parable.”
Jesus’ conclusion is simple but striking. “Therefore I tell you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven—for she loved much. Her sins which are many—“Those many sins of hers,” Our Lord, who admitted how much more she owed than the Pharisee, now proclaims in naked terms the forgiveness of her guilt.
The point of the story, both the one Luke records and the one Jesus shares, is that the one who is forgiven little, loves little. Jesus then turns to the woman and proclaims, “Your sins are forgiven.”
Then those who were at table with him began to say among themselves, “Who is this, who even forgives sins?” (Luke 7:40-49 ESV). As in other such circumstances, Jesus’ statement of forgiving sins is not well received. Regardless, he says to her, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.” (Luke 7:50 ESV). She is not to live in the tranquility of being at peace with the one, true holy God.
The practical application is as follows: When you have dinner today with you family, what things have you done, or failed to do, in which you need to ask forgiveness? Don’t wait! Do so today!
There may be someone this week who will come to you asking for forgiveness. Are you ready, willing and able by God’s grace to be one who forgives? Ask God to prepare your heart for such a moment.
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It is most proper to begin a study of the “solas” by first examining the importance of Sola Scriptura. This is because the remaining “solas” rest upon the premise of the Scriptures being God’s sole and final authority. Therefore, the subsequent “solas” rise or fall on the basis of Sola Scriptura.
There were two causes for the Protestant Reformation: a material cause and a formal cause. The material cause was a dispute over the doctrine of justification by faith alone (Sola Fide). The formal cause was the disagreement over biblical authority (Sola Scriptura). The Reformers coined this phrase, Sola Scriptura, but certainly not this doctrine, when they rejected the two-source view of authority; meaning that the authority of church tradition is equal to the authority of the Scriptures.
Sola Scriptura is fundamentally opposed to relativistic individualism. In a culture wherein the individual reigns supreme, and churches pander to “keep the customer satisfied,” the doctrine of Sola Scriptura states that all individual ideas and behaviors must be in submission to, and aligned with, Scripture. This opposes those in the church, and the culture, who justify their sinful behavior, and consequently their disobedience to Scripture, with a self-centered perspective wherein the individual’s desires are preeminent.
The Alliance is a coalition of pastors, scholars, and churchmen who hold the historic creeds and confessions of the Reformed faith and who proclaim biblical doctrine in order to foster a Reformed awakening in today's Church.