Thursday, March 13, 2014

Simon the Pharisee

Last night was a Lenten Service at our church. This year Mike asked for volunteers to do little one-person dramas. Last night was our first one and I am proud to say that one of the high school boys from the Sunday School Class I co-teach was the brave volunteer. I am always proud of the kids in our class.

This is Bailey, also known as Simon the Pharisee, before church began. I was snapping photos right along side of his mother, Nicole. Weird, maybe, but I have need of good material for my blog posts so I was willing to be a bit more quirky than normal. Thanks for putting up with me, Bailey and Nicole!

Here is Bailey in action. He did such a fine job! It was fun to watch him get into his part. The message he brought was excellent.

Simon the Pharisee was portrayed as one of the uppity-ups from Jesus' time, someone who followed all the rules and tried to make sure everyone knew him to be a righteous person. He spoke of watching Jesus and how he was impressed with him at first. He liked that Jesus was not afraid to "call a sin a sin". He liked that Jesus confronted sinners and told them to change their ways.

As he spoke on, though, Simon acknowledge how disappointed in he was Jesus. He said he'd invited Jesus and other important people of the community to dinner. He spoke of the woman of ill repute coming in and kissed Jesus' feet.  Simon was disgusted by her. He then became disappointed in Jesus for allowing her to touch him.

Although this woman may have been dirty and may sinned in ways that 

Simon went on, speaking negatively of Jesus' character. Of course, it led us all to the proper conclusion that we all need to recognize ourselves as sinners. We need to yearn to be forgiven and to change our ways because we WANT to please Jesus.

This lesson is not outdated. We are all sinners, yet forgiveness is available to us. We are loved more than we know.

I love that Jesus often used those society scorned in order to make his points. He showed such compassion for those who sought him out, no matter their station in life. 

Thanks, Bailey, for working to remind us of that love and compassion freely offered to each of us.

Luke 7:36-50

New Century Version (NCV)

A Woman Washes Jesus’ Feet

36 One of the Pharisees asked Jesus to eat with him, so Jesus went into the Pharisee’s house and sat at the table. 37 A sinful woman in the town learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee’s house. So she brought an alabaster jar of perfume 38 and stood behind Jesus at his feet, crying. She began to wash his feet with her tears, and she dried them with her hair, kissing them many times and rubbing them with the perfume. 39 When the Pharisee who asked Jesus to come to his house saw this, he thought to himself, “If Jesus were a prophet, he would know that the woman touching him is a sinner!”
40 Jesus said to the Pharisee, “Simon, I have something to say to you.”
Simon said, “Teacher, tell me.”
41 Jesus said, “Two people owed money to the same banker. One owed five hundred coins[a] and the other owed fifty. 42 They had no money to pay what they owed, but the banker told both of them they did not have to pay him. Which person will love the banker more?”
43 Simon, the Pharisee, answered, “I think it would be the one who owed him the most money.”
Jesus said to Simon, “You are right.” 44 Then Jesus turned toward the woman and said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? When I came into your house, you gave me no water for my feet, but she washed my feet with her tears and dried them with her hair. 45 You gave me no kiss of greeting, but she has been kissing my feet since I came in. 46 You did not put oil on my head, but she poured perfume on my feet. 47 I tell you that her many sins are forgiven, so she showed great love. But the person who is forgiven only a little will love only a little.”
48 Then Jesus said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”
49 The people sitting at the table began to say among themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?”
50 Jesus said to the woman, “Because you believed, you are saved from your sins. Go in peace.”


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