Luke 7:37-47 NRSVue

37And a woman in the city who was a sinner, having learned that he was eating in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster jar of ointment. 38She stood behind him at his feet, weeping, and began to bathe his feet with her tears and to dry them with her hair, kissing his feet and anointing them with the ointment. 39Now when the Pharisee who had invited him saw it, he said to himself, “If this man were a prophet, he would have known who and what kind of woman this is who is touching him, that she is a sinner.” 40Jesus spoke up and said to him, “Simon, I have something to say to you.” “Teacher,” he replied, “speak.” 41“A certain moneylender had two debtors; one owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42When they could not pay, he canceled the debts for both of them. Now which of them will love him more?” 43Simon answered, “I suppose the one for whom he canceled the greater debt.” And Jesus said to him, “You have judged rightly.” 44Then turning toward the woman, he said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave me no water for my feet, but she has bathed my feet with her tears and dried them with her hair. 45You gave me no kiss, but from the time I came in she has not stopped kissing my feet. 46You did not anoint my head with oil, but she has anointed my feet with ointment. 47Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven; hence she has shown great love. But the one to whom little is forgiven loves little.”

Some thoughts on this scripture

Her many sins have been forgiven; hence, she has shown great love. The forgiveness Jesus gives is unconditional. He draws it from the bottomless well of divine forgiveness. I don’t deserve it. No one deserves it. But God is like that, love and forgiveness. So let me smile and accept it.

Saint Luke always speaks favourably about women. He begins with Elizabeth and Mary and continues his appreciation of women through the Acts of the Apostles. For Jesus, there is ‘neither male or female’ (Galatians 3:28). My brother or sister is a person ‘for whom Christ died’ (1 Corinthians 8:11). May I always respect everyone as God does.