A person described as a sinner would be one who does not live according to the principles of God; however, that does not mean they do not know who Jesus is. Maybe they feel that they’ve done so much wrong that there is no forgiveness for them. Or maybe they have had no one to truly introduce them to the Love of Jesus. Either way, the word of God has stated that we all have sinned and come short of His glory.
For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; Romans 3:23
There was a woman in the Bible who was identified as a sinner, but no one really knows her full story. Who knows if there were nights where she cried and prayed for help. Who knows if she had been tormented in her mind just from her own thoughts. Who knows if her heart yearned for a change in her life. She was just known as “the sinner.”
The word of God (Luke 7:37) goes on to say that when she knew that Jesus was in town, she went to the house where Jesus was invited to have dinner. The woman brought an alabaster box filled with precious and expensive oils and began to anoint and kiss the feet of Jesus as she wept. Notice she didn’t even care about not having an invitation. She had purpose- to get to Jesus. So overcome with emotions, the woman must’ve cried so hard that she covered the feet of Jesus with her tears, so she took her hair and wiped them. Of course, the folk who went to church (knew the law or the right thing to do, but would not follow Jesus) had something to say about it and became judgmental. But oh my God- because of her act of faith, Jesus saved that woman from ALL of her sins.
“Then He turned to the woman and said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave Me no water for My feet, but she has washed My feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head. You gave Me no kiss, but this woman has not ceased to kiss My feet since the time I came in. You did not anoint My head with oil, but this woman has anointed My feet with fragrant oil. Then He said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.” Then He said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you. Go in peace.”Luke 7:44-46, 48, 50 NKJV
The woman with the alabaster box believed more than the church folk. The woman was more dutiful as a “sinner” than those who studied the law themselves.
Two things I’ve gained from this story. None of us are perfect! We all must remember how difficult it was to get to a place to truly trust the Lord, if we still are not there. The Spirit of discernment should lead us to help one another, not condemn. If you see someone struggling, remember what tormented you. Recall to your mind the struggles you had with being obedient and faithful to God. Remember when you were a sinner. Remember the times you constantly stayed in the prayer line. Recall the sleepless nights and how you wet your pillow with tears of sorrow. Remember when your loved ones reminded you of how they were praying for you and you still did your “thing.” Continue to love them. Continue to pray for them. Continue to encourage them, whoever “them” are that crosses your path.
Secondarily, this woman didn’t care about who was there. She had a purpose and she was going to get to Jesus at all cost, literally. It did not matter that she was not invited. It did not matter that she was stereotyped. It did not matter how much money she could have received for her possessions- she had an appointment with Jesus. The price of her freedom from sin was worth more than any amount of money she could’ve obtained by selling the oil in the alabaster box. She went with purpose and left with a praise.
What about you? God has given us an abundance of grace and He has proven to us over and over again how much He loves us. We place a monetary value on our so called “commitment” to Jesus. The work we do, has to be compensated, but we forget that the price has already been paid. Now don’t misunderstand me. Why would the word of God say: “if a man does not work, he should not eat, if we did not need to make money to live?” That tells me that the Lord understands we have to provide for ourselves and our families. However, our sole intent for committing to something should not be based on what we can obtain in dollars. What if the earning is a soul? What if you prevented someone from committing suicide? What if you led someone to peace within themselves?
What have you given in exchange for your freedom from the bondage of sin? Regardless of what the world could offer you for your gifts, your ideas, your passions, have you chosen to allow the light of Jesus to shine and to allow Him to make room for your gifts? I don’t know about you but for me, there is nothing that I could give in exchange for what Jesus has done for me. My life, my stupid thoughts, my attitude and my past reckless behavior were so unworthy of His love. Yet and still, He cared. And quite frankly, I am amazed.
“What fruit did you have then in the things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death. But now having been set free from sin, and having become slaves of God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end, everlasting life. For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 6:21-23 NKJV