God is love - a Lenten series 19 Love opens doors

Love wants everyone in the club. Jesus keeps the door open to all who are being kept out. At the same time he is also inviting those who are doing the gate keeping. He eats at a religious opponents house, a Pharisee, but let's a woman of uncertain reputation into the Pharisee's house to anoint him.

Jesus has gone to his religious opponent's house to invite him into the mystery of love. Then the woman of ill-repute comes in clinging to Jesus' feet, crying and anointing. Because he does not see her as a neighbor, but as "a sinner", he closes the gate Christ has thrown open. "Come out of your fenced in corral of fear," Christ proclaims, "and follow me into the wide open fields of love! Don't be afraid, I am with you!"

Evangelicals like to say "Love the sinner, hate the sin," without realizing they are taking the same posture as the Pharisee in this story. I wanted to make a "sinner" a part of my corral Until we say, "Love my neighbor" full stop, we haven't fully stepped into the mystery of love.


Luke 7:36 When one of the Pharisees invited Jesus to have dinner with him, he went to the Pharisee’s house and reclined at the table. 37 A woman in that town who lived a sinful life learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee’s house, so she came there with an alabaster jar of perfume. 38 As she stood behind him at his feet weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them and poured perfume on them. 39 When the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, “If this man were a prophet, he would know who is touching him and what kind of woman she is—that she is a sinner.” 40 Jesus answered him, “Simon, I have something to tell you.”“Tell me, teacher,” he said. 41 “Two people owed money to a certain moneylender. One owed him five hundred denarii,and the other fifty. 42 Neither of them had the money to pay him back, so he forgave the debts of both. Now which of them will love him more?” 43 Simon replied, “I suppose the one who had the bigger debt forgiven.” “You have judged correctly,” Jesus said. 44 Then he turned toward the woman and said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I came into your house. You did not give me any water for my feet, but she wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. 45 You did not give me a kiss, but this woman, from the time I entered, has not stopped kissing my feet. 46 You did not put oil on my head, but she has poured perfume on my feet. 47 Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven—as her great love has shown. But whoever has been forgiven little loves little.” 48 Then Jesus said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.” 49 The other guests began to say among themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?” 50 Jesus said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”


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