The reading of the Gospel today( The forth Sunday of the month of Tout) tells us about the Forgiveness of a sinful woman in the Gospel of Luke Chapter 7, but the Bible tells us about three different women who anointed Jesus with oil.
The first woman was a sinful woman who anointed the feet of Jesus with fragrant oil (Luke. 7). This happened in Simon’s (the Pharisee) house in Galilee during the first year of Jesus’ service.
The Second woman was Mary who is Lazarus’s sister. Six days before The Passover, our Lord Jesus Christ returned to Bethany to spend the Saturday before Palm Sunday at the home of His close friends Lazarus, Mary and Martha. Mary took a pound of very costly oil of spikenard and anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped His feet with her hair. Jesus considered the act of anointing to be a symbol of preparation of His Body for burial (John 12).
The third woman is an unknown woman, in which the Bible does not name (Matt. 26, Mk. 14). Two days before Passover when Jesus was in Bethany at the house of Simon the leper, a woman came to Him having an alabaster flask of very costly fragrant oil and she poured it on His head. She did that to declare that she accepted Jesus as the king of her life. Jesus promised perpetual public memory of this woman because of her fervent faith.
So now we have three stories of three different women…
Q: What is the spiritual meaning of the fragrant oil poured on the head and feet of our Lord Jesus Christ?
A:The sinful woman put all her feelings of love and repentance in her flask of oil and went to pour it on the feet of Jesus, showing her love and repentance. That is why we call it, “the fragrant oil of repentance”, because she offered repentance through her tears.
Mary, Lazarus’s sister put her fervent love in her flask of oil and went to pour it on the feet of our Lord Jesus Christ showing her love and appreciation before His passion. We call the oil, “the fragrant oil of meditation”, because she was sitting at the feet of Jesus, meditating and listening to his words and teachings.
The third unknown woman put all her feelings of love in her flask of oil and went to pour it on the head of our Lord Jesus. As we know, that it is the way of anointing the kings in the Old Testament, by pouring the oil on their heads (1 Samuel 10:1). So we call this oil, “the fragrant oil of anointing the King of Kings.”
Now returning to our story today about the sinful woman, who wanted to repent because she felt that she was a sinner. She did not talk to the Lord, because as the Gospel told us today, “she stood at His feet behind Him weeping and she began to wash His feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head and she kissed His feet and anointed them with the fragrant oil.”
She bought very costly oil and anointed the feet of Jesus and made a mix of her tears, her kisses and the fragrant oil. She asked our Lord in a silent way, a silent love, with no words but through eye language, being her tears. God accepted her repentance and declared His forgiveness in front of all the people there. Because of her trust and faith in Jesus, Jesus said to Simon, “Therefore I say to you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much.”
This should be looked at as a great inspiration for those who feel that sin has taken over their lives. In the mercy of God, a sinful past is not a hopeless liability. Forgiveness comes to those who truly love Jesus Christ. Whatever happened in the past, and whatever the enemy won’t let you forget like lies you told, debts, bitterness and anger you
had, you need to know that Jesus Christ is sitting there waiting for you. He wants you to know that He loves you and that you are forgiven.
The great thing about God is that He not only forgives, but he also forgets.
When our tongues are not able to express our love for the Lord in words, sometimes we need to use another way of showing our love. So you can stand at the feet of Jesus Christ under the cross in your room and through the language of tears, you can examine yourself and repent.
The language of tears means returning to God with a new heart and this means repentance, as it was said in the book of Joel, “Return to Me with all your hearts” (Joel 2:12), “Return to Me and I will return to you” (Mal. 3:7), and finally, “Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out” (Acts 3:19).
So we need to return to God through repentance, but I would like to say that God wants us to return to Him. He wants us to have salvation and wishes that we love Him as much as He loves us.
When Jesus said to the woman, “your faith has saved you, go in peace.” What is that Faith? It is Faith in Him as a saviour and by her repentance; she had salvation, forgiveness and peace.
You must trust in the love of Jesus and His mercy and not delay the repentance or stop the confession.