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The street woman

Posted: February 18, 2016 in The street woman


oil flask

This story takes place in a house at a fairly fancy dinner party.

Simon the Pharisee invites Jesus to dinner. Jesus is now well known and Simon thinks it would look good to have Jesus in his house.

JESUS comes to the dinner party and joins the other guests at the table. Jesus knows why he has been invited, and he knows the intention of every heart.

A street woman from the town hears that Jesus is at this dinner, and she goes along too. She brings a jar of perfume, the one precious thing she owns. She kneels at Jesus feet, washes them with her tears and wipes them with her hair.

  1. Who is JESUS is the holy God come into the world as a man. He has made everything, and the whole story of human history is about HIM. He is the SAVIOUR OF THE WORLD.
  1. Who was this woman? She is a woman who lived on the street, she worked for her money in an immoral way. She has been used by men and abused by them most of her life. She lived a life full of shame and knowing other people looked down on her… A social outcast…no one invited her to their house. No one allowed their children to play with her children. She was regarded as the lowest of the low… People disregarded her and she had little regard for herself…
  1. Who was Simon? A well respected Pharisee, who obeyed the law of God to the tiniest bit of herb..! very particular about doing the right thing, as he saw it. He knew the OT law so well and he relished in the fact that he was a Pharisee and everyone looked up to him. People stopped and admired him in the street as he prayed in the street corners. People asked him to pray for them. He was regarded as a holy man.

Who is the problem in this story? The problem in this story is not the woman.

The problem is Simon the Pharisee, and Jesus loves him. Jesus loves all people and is not willing that any should go into destruction. Jesus is going to teach Simon a lesson he will not learn in the synagogue.

The woman comes to the dinner party and starts to weep at Jesus feet. Her tears fall, and she uses her hair to wipe Jesus feet.

She has brought with her a precious jar of perfume. It was a small jar made from Alabaster and inside is some very expensive perfume.

She would have saved up her money to buy this- and to keep it – like a pension savings, so that she would have money when she couldn’t work any more.

Jesus knew why she did this. He knew she truly loved him and this was an amazing sacrifice she was making for him. Jesus knew her heart, even when others didn’t.

The other guests were full of judgment. Simon didn’t say anything, but Jesus knew his thoughts. Simon despised the woman.

But Jesus knew those thoughts and the motivations behind them too…

Jesus tries to help Simon.

Jesus tells a story about two people who go to the money lender to borrow money.

 They have gone short of cash and try to borrow some more.

Today it might be Wonga..!
One borrows £10 the other borrows £10,000
But the situation arose where neither were able to pay the money back. They couldn’t pay Wonga back!
Wonga, unrealistically wipes their debts out.!!
£10 doesn’t have to be paid
£10,000 doesn’t have to be paid.
Jesus asks Simon Who loves the money lender more?
£10,000 as it is the most!!! This person will love the most and be most grateful.
Simon understands. He says, the one who owed the most, will love the most…
Jesus turns to the woman…. Look what she has done for me today.
Washed my feet
Dried them with her hair
Kissed my feet because she loves me…
Anointed me with precious expensive oil….

You have not done these things…!   WHY?

Jesus is trying to show Simon what is missing…
Simon has money, prestige, he has invited Jesus to the dinner, he listens to Jesus story… What’s missing?
Simon doesn’t love Jesus… all the things he is doing is really just for show….
Jesus looks at the woman. She has humbled herself and risked the criticism for showing her love for Jesus.


“Your sins are forgiven..” Lets get this the right way round. The woman was forgiven, and because she was forgiven, she loved Jesus and showed her love to everyone.

 She was not forgiven because she anointed Jesus with the expensive perfume.. She gave Jesus everything, because she had been forgiven by him…

How wonderful to be such a person…

If you are a Christian, you will know what this means. You will know in your heart and in your life what it means to love Jesus, and to be loved by Him… It is the greatest thing.

The people listening to Jesus, were full of cynicism and unbelief. They were offended at Jesus – who does he think he is…

They couldn’t see Jesus love for the woman, and they couldn’t see her love for him.

Jesus does not leave the woman sad, or regretful. He lifts her up and says “Your faith has saved you… go in peace…”

She has given Jesus everything she had, and she has not lost out.

She has peace with God. She knows the Lord Jesus and no one can take that away from her.

She went home rejoicing.

People will want to make you doubt, or make you want to go along with them, but, if you know Jesus, you will follow him. People at school, at home might pressurize you or criticize you for trying to follow Jesus, but Jesus will keep you and give you the strength to follow Him.
What about the other people at the dinner party?
They can’t get over the fact, that Jesus accepts the woman, and not them. They think they have little sins. They think they are good.
They don’t need to anoint Jesus – they don’t really see who he is…
They left the party still judging and still thinking they were ok. God will accept them, because they are good enough.
God does not accept that idea at all.

God accepts all who come to him in faith. People who know they are sinful and admit it and ask for forgiveness. That’s all…

I wonder what you would give Jesus if he were here tonight?

Is there something you really value that you could give to show your love for him?

Jesus does not want presents, money, going to church, doing good deeds to be seen….Jesus wants you – your whole self.

That is the one thing I might not want to give… I might want to keep a bit back…

The woman in the story gave herself, and all her sin, and Jesus made her a clean person. The other things she gave were gifts of love to her Lord, because of what he had done…

Tonight, of course, Jesus IS HERE.

He is speaking to you through his word… will you come to Him?