The Parables of Jesus # 19
Parable of the Two Debtors
- Find a quiet place without distractions.
- Be comfortably alert, still, and at peace.
- Say the Lord’s Prayer. Sing or cant the Jesus Prayer.
- Pray for family, friends, neighbors, and yourself.
- Slowly and carefully read the passage of Scripture.
- Jesus did not shun Pharisees thought they constantly opposed Him. He accepts an invitation from one of these, a man named Simon, which is a common Jewish name.
- Simon did not perform customary acts for a guest: cleaning of feet and anointing one’s hair with oil (olive). Dusty roads and body cleaning rather rare, but Jesus did not so receive.
- A woman of dubious reputation, likely a prostitute, boldly enters the dinner party. She approaches Jesus’ feet as He would be laying on His left side with head toward the low laying table in the center of the room. With tears, using her hair as a towel, she cleans the grime from Jesus’ feet then anoints His head, and at great expense, she performs what Simon did not.
- Jesus understood this to be a display of love and devotion for the forgiveness she had received. Simon is convinced now that Jesus is not (a) (the) prophet or He would have known what a sinner the woman was.
- Jesus, knowing what Simon was thinking, breaks into the situation with a parable.
- Two debtors, both owed a great deal, a sum they could not pay; one owed 20 months wages and the other two months.
- When questioned by Jesus which debtor loved the most, (The Greek word for “love” is agape.) Simon gets it right.
- Jesus then, based on the love displayed, says the woman’s sins are forgiven. Simon would instantly know only God forgives sin, thus a huge conflict must develop for him.
The act of the woman does not earn her forgiveness, but is an expression of the forgiveness she had received.