In this passage we see Jesus being greeted by a woman who was seen as a very “low” person in the town Jesus was in. The Bible tells us that she is a sinner and when she “learned that he (Jesus) was reclining at the table in the Pharisee’s house” she brought in a bottle of perfume and cleaned his feet. An important man in the town, a Pharisee, questioned why Jesus would let this woman touch him and weep at his feet. Jesus responded by telling a story in which “two people owed money to a certain moneylender”. One person owed 500 denarii (a denarii is about 1 days of work pay) and another 50, neither person had the money to give back, so the lender forgave them both. Jesus asks the question, “Now which of them will love him (the lender) more?” Simon replies that the one who owed more.
As humans, we owed the greatest debt to God, one that could never be repaid no matter how hard we tried to make it up. Think of us as a debtor who owed like 20,000 denarii. We were born into sin, our very beings are disobedient to the Lord. Instead, God (like the lender) sent His son as a sacrafice for our sins. He paid our debt. Our slates were wiped clean when we came to know Jesus. We have been forgiven of the greatest debt.
We see Jesus point out that more forgiveness was given to the person who was in a greater debt. Jesus calls us into a life of forgiveness, we are to forgive those around us even when the debt is high. Forgiveness is choosing to look at those who owe us, wronged us, or left us hurt and not say “it’s okay” but instead say “I forgive you because I know what it’s like to be forgiven”.
I ask that You look at my heart and my life, show me where I have withheld forgiveness from someone. Show me where I have valued being right over being loving. I ask that You step in and allow me to give that to You. I acknowledge that You have forgiven me and I choose to forgive others.