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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Tuesday, January 12, 2016
Today’s scripture reading:
Again Luke contrasts the Pharisees with sinners—and again the sinners come out ahead. Simon had committed several social errors in neglecting to wash Jesus’ feet (a courtesy extended to guests because sandaled feet got very dirty), anoint his head with oil, and offer him the kiss of greeting. Did Simon perhaps feel that he was too good to treat Jesus as an equal? The sinful woman, by contrast, lavished tears, expensive perfume, and kisses on her Savior. In this story it is the grateful immoral woman, and not the stingy religious leader, whose sins were forgiven. Although it is God’s grace through faith that saves us, and not acts of love or generosity, this woman’s act demonstrated her true faith, and Jesus honored her faith. (NLT)
Luke 7:36-50 – One of the Pharisees asked Jesus to come to his home for a meal, so Jesus accepted the invitation and sat down to eat. A certain immoral woman heard he was there and brought a beautiful jar filled with expensive perfume. Then she knelt behind him at his feet, weeping. Her tears fell on his feet, and she wiped them off with her hair. Then she kept kissing his feet and putting perfume on them.
When the Pharisee who as the host saw what was happening and who the woman was, he said to himself, “This proves that Jesus is no prophet. If God had really sent him, he would know what kind of woman is touching him. She’s a sinner!”
Then Jesus spoke up and answered his thoughts. “Simon,” he said to the Pharisee, “I have something to say to you.” “All right, Teacher,” Simon replied, “go ahead.”
Then Jesus told him this story: “A man loaned money to two people—five hundred pieces of silver to one and fifty pieces to the other. But neither of them could repay him, so he kindly forgave them both, canceling their debts. Who do you suppose loved him more after that?”
Simon answered, “I suppose the one for whom he canceled the larger debt.”
“That’s right,” Jesus said. Then he turned to the woman and said to Simon, “Look at this woman kneeling here. When I entered your home, you didn’t offer me water to wash the dust from my feet, but she has washed them with her tears and wiped them with her hair. You didn’t give me a kiss of greeting, but she has kissed my feet again and again from the time I first came in. You neglected the courtesy of olive oil to anoint my head, but she has anointed my feet with rare perfume. I tell you, her sins—and they are many—have been forgiven, so she has shown me much love. But a person who is forgiven little shows only little love.” Then Jesus said to the woman, “Your sins are forgiven.”
The men at the table said among themselves, “Who does this man think he is, going around forgiving sins?”
And Jesus said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”
Elmer A. Dickson (Florida) titled his story “EYES TO SEE;” here is a portion of Elmer’s story:
“. . . Often we have eyes that do not see. The story in today’s reading calls us all to see people with whom we interact each day not as stereotypes but as real people with needs, gifts, and great possibilities – for that is the way God sees us all. The biblical message is that God – who came in Jesus Christ – sees us, knows us, died for us, and cares for us. Our lives can be made new when we respond to God’s redeeming love that we know in Jesus Christ.”
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – I will look for God in everyone I see today.
Prayer: Dear God, give us eyes to see the people around us and hearts to love them as Christ has loved us. Amen.
To read the rest of the story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: http://devotional.upperroom.org/
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