What are you holding onto? What sin is so great that you are withholding forgiveness, you who have been forgiven? Today we look at how those who have been forgiven much, love much. Our problem is that we only want to be on the receiving end of grace…
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.”
16 So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer.
14 Like water spilled on the ground, which cannot be recovered, so we must die. But that is not what God desires; rather, he devises ways so that a banished person does not remain banished from him.
He who has been forgiven little loves little. He who has been forgiven much, loves much. Do you believe that? That’s how Jesus described the adoration of the woman who washed his feet with her tears and her hair and then poured perfume on them. The woman loved much because she had been forgiven much. The religious leader Jesus was dining with objected and judged the woman. He continued to see her sin instead of seeing her as a person who was wholeheartedly worshiping.
How do you see others? Do you look at them for their sin and their guilt, or do you see them with grace and through the heavenly lens of God? I can tell you the Christian way of viewing others.
The Christian way is to regard no one from a worldly point of view. The Christian view – the Christ-like view – of others in the world is to view them as people whom God offers forgiveness. And we are the ambassadors of that forgiveness in the world (2Corinthians 5:19).
Have you been forgiven much? Yes. Then love much. Pass on the grace of God. Adore the Lord all the more.
In our story of David and the wise woman of Tekoa, the woman challenged David to extend forgiveness and restoration to his own son who was banished from his family. As I read the story (2Samuel 13-14) of the rape of Tamar by Amnon, and Absalom’s revenge by murdering Amnon, I wondered how this story related to the previous story in David’s life.
Directly before this story is the account of David’s adultery with Bathsheba, in which he had Bathsheba’s husband killed in battle – David was guilty of adultery and murder. In fact, David was guilty of rape and murder. Bathsheba had no more power to stop David than Tamar had to stop Amnon. In fact, Bathsheba had even less power.
David is as human as the day is long. He has sinned as much as the woman who washed Jesus’ feet that day. David had actually committed the same sins as his own sons, Amnon and Absalom. And we read that David hated Amnon for his sin, and he left Absalom banished for three years from the family.
When Nathan the prophet confronted David with his sin, David confessed and received the forgiveness of God (2Samuel 12:13). David had been forgiven much, and yet he withheld his own love toward his own sons who sinned in their father’s footsteps. The woman from Tekoa is asking David to live the grace of God and love as much as he had been forgiven.
Is there any room for holding grudges against people in this message? No. He who has been forgiven much loves much.
What are you holding onto? What sin is so great that you are withholding forgiveness, you who have been forgiven? Perhaps consider God’s grace to you as you consider your attitude and action toward others…