BIBLE TEXT – READ (Luke 7:36 – 50)



This scripture portion tells the story of two people, one a religious Pharisee, the other a woman known in the city as a sinner.  Both were in the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ at the same time.  There were many differences, many contrasts, between these two people, some of which we will highlight as we go into more detail.  The attitude and actions of these two people towards Jesus Christ resulted in two different outcomes.  It is the same today.  (Matthew 22:42) “What think ye of Christ?  Whose son is he?”  Your attitude, your actions, your answer to this question will determine whether your sins are forgiven or not forgiven.  It will determine your eternal destiny, whether it will be heaven or hell. 


By way of a simple outline we want to consider two principle things in this story in (Luke 7:36 – 50):









There are at least three “WRONG THINGS” that are revealed about the Pharisee:




The story begins in verse 36 when he gave the Lord Jesus an invitation to eat in his house.  At first glance this appears to be a nice gesture.  On closer scrutiny, however, it was hostility that prompted the invitation.  Simon, the Pharisee, had the wrong motive for inviting Jesus to his house.  This is evident by the fact that he neglected the common courtesies of an Eastern home.  Notice the following verses:


·        (verse 44) “thou gavest me no water for my feet” – It was customary; upon the arrival of a guest to bring water to wash the feet. 

·        (verse 45) “Thou gavest me no kiss” – A kiss on the check was a sign of welcome and salutation. 

·        (verse 46) “My head with oil thou didst not anoint” – Anointing of a guest was an act of showing hospitality and honor. 


Simon did none of these things for the Saviour.  It was uncouth invitation, lacking all cordiality.  His invitation was offered out of curiosity.  He wanted to catch the Lord Jesus in His words or ways that would justify his rejection of Him.  It was an invitation for investigation. 




(verse 39) “he spake within himself saying, this man, IF HE WERE A PROPHET”.  To Simon, Jesus was less than a prophet.  Friend, let me ask you again What think ye of Christ?  Whose Son is He”?  Your eternal destiny depends on your opinion.  Some of you may think that Jesus was an imposter or a charlatan or that He did not exist at all.  Some of you may think that He was a good man or a martyr.  These are wrong thoughts about Jesus that will result in eternal consequences.  Your eternal salvation depends on your understanding and acceptance that Jesus Christ is Lord.  He alone is the Saviour of sinners.  (Acts 4:12) “Neither is there salvation in any other, for there is none other name under heaven given among men, where by we must be saved”.  The Lord Jesus said (John 14:6) “I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man cometh unto the Father but by me”.  If you want to “come to the Father”, if you want to be saved, you must come by the Lord Jesus Christ.  You must believe in Him and accept Him as your own personal Saviour.  (John 3:16) “For God so loved the world,  that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have ever lasting life”.  Please do not come to the wrong conclusion about the Lord Jesus Christ as Simon, the Pharisee, did. 




He thought the actions of the Lord Jesus Christ validated his low estimation of Him.  To Simon, the Pharisee, this man called Jesus was less than a prophet and he rejected the Lord’s ability to forgive sins.  See (verse 49).  Because of the Pharisee’s rejection of the Lord Jesus Christ and his refusal to believe in Him, he remained in his sins and unsaved.  The Lord never said to him, as He said to the woman, “Thy sins are forgiven” (verse 48) or “Thy faith hath saved thee” (verse 50).  The Pharisee remained complacent and self satisfied.  He remained satisfied with his religion, with its outward ritualism, creeds and ceremonies.  The Pharisee remained a “religious” man who was unsaved, who rejected the only Saviour of sinners.  Friend, are you saved?  Have you been “born again”?  (John 3:3,7)  “Except a man be born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God”.  “Ye must be born again”.  These words were spoken to another “religious” person named Nicodemus.  Being, so called, religious will never get you to heaven.  Nothing less than the righteousness of God imputed to you through faith in Christ will avail.  You must accept Jesus Christ to be your Lord and Saviour by a definite act of faith.





There are at least three “RIGHT THINGS” that are revealed about the woman;




Notice (verse 37) “when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisees’ house, (she) brought an alabaster box of ointment”. She came because Jesus was there. Friend, when it comes to the salvation of your soul, there is no other person to whom you can come. Remember (Acts 4:12) which was quoted earlier, “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved”. Have you ever come to the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation? If not, will you come today, acknowledge your sins and need of salvation and in simple faith accept Jesus Christ to be your Lord and Saviour?


It is generally believed by Bible students that the incident recorded in (Matthew 11: 20-30) occurred just prior to the story that we are considering here in (Luke 7:36-50). In (Matthew 11:28) the Lord Jesus gave His most gracious invitation, COME unto me, ALL ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest”.


  • “COME” – To come, means to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, to receive Him as your own personal Saviour.
  • “UNTO ME” – The object of your faith is not a church, a creed, or a clergyman, but the living Christ. Salvation is in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ.
  • “ALL YOU WHO LABOR AND ARE HEAVY LADEN” – Before you can truly come to Jesus you must feel and admit the burden and weight of your sin. Before you can be saved you must know and acknowledge that you are lost. Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ must be preceded by repentance toward God.
  • “AND I WILL GIVE YOU REST” – Rest is a gift that God gives when you get saved.  It cannot be earned or merited.  This is the “rest of salvation” and the “rest of conscience” knowing that your sins are forgiven and that you are a child of God through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.


It is likely that the sinful woman in our story heard the Lords invitation “Come unto me” and she came to Him and received Him as her own personal Saviour.




There is no question that the woman in our story was a sinner.  (verse 37) “a woman in the city, which was a sinner’, (verse 39) “she is a sinner”, (verse 47) “Her sins, which are many”.  She not only came to Jesus in her sins, she came with tears.  This writer believes that this woman was previously saved when this incident occurred.  Her tears, I believe, were tears from the woman’s uncontrolled expression of love, devotion and adoration.  This is why she brought the alabaster box of ointment, to anoint the Saviour in an expression of worship.  This incident is a reminder, however, of how a sinner must come to the Saviour.  You must come in your sins “for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).  You must come in tears, i.e., there must be sorrow for sin against God.  You must come in conviction of sin and repentance toward God.


·        (Isaiah 66:2) “to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word”.

·        (Psalm 34:18) “The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart, and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit”. 


Will you take the sinners place and acknowledge your sinful condition before God and your need of a Saviour? 




What are you depending upon to get you into heaven?  Have you put your faith in your church membership, your infant baptism, your confirmation or your clergyman?  Do you believe by “doing the best you can”, keeping the “golden rule”, tithing, etc., that these things will get you into heaven?  My friend, listen to what the Bible says about your so called good works”;


·        (Titus 3:5) Salvation isNot by works of righteousness which we have done”. 

·        (Ephesians 2:9) Salvation isNot of works, lest any man should boast”.

·        (Isaiah 64:6) “We are all as an unclean thing and all our righteousness our as filthy rags.


How then can a person be saved?  Notice what (Acts 16:30, 31) says – “What must I do to by saved”?  “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved”.  Will you believe in Him and receive Him to be your own personal Saviour, the one who suffered, bleed and died on the cross for your sins and on the third day was resurrected?  The woman in our story did.  Notice what the Saviour said to her in (verse 50) “Thy faith hath saved thee”.  As a result we read in (verse 47) “Her sins which are many, are forgiven”, (verse 48) “Thy sins are forgiven”.  Friend, are your sins forgiven?  The Lord Jesus said (John 8:24) “if you believe not that I am He (His deity) ye shall die in your sins”.  Nothing could be worse than to die in your sins, to die unsaved and to spend eternity in the “lake of fire”.  See (Revelation 20:10-15; 21:8). 


The Lord Jesus Christ told a little parable to Simon, the Pharisee.  This is found in (verses 40-43).  In summary it is about a creditor that had two debtors.  One debtor owed ten times as much as the other.  The creditor is God.  We are the debtors.  Some are worse sinners than others but all are sinners and accountable to God.  Notice (verse 42) “When they had nothing to pay, He frankly forgave them both”.  Sin is a debt that we cannot pay.  Jesus Christ paid the debt when He died on the cross for our sins.  He was. “delivered for our offences and was raised again for our justification” (Romans 4:25) “Christ - - hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God”.


The woman in our story was “A WOMAN WITH A GREAT DEBT AND NOTHING TO PAY”.  So it is for each one of us, sin is a debt that we cannot pay.  (Psalm 49:7) “None - - can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him”.  This is why God “spared not his own Son, but delivered Him up for us all” (Romans 8:32).  When He shed His precious blood on the cross of Calvary, He paid the ransom price that we could never pay.  Will you believe on Him?  (John 3:18) “He that believeth on Him is not condemned (judged), but he that believeth not is condemned (judged) all ready, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God”. 


Please give this matter your most serious attention.  Will you be a believer or a non-believer?  Your eternal destiny depends on your decision. 


Christian Messenger