No One Is Forgiven Little.

Luke 7:47
…….47 “Therefore I say to you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much. But to whom little is forgiven, the same loves little.”

(Jesus at the home of Simon, the Pharisee)

What is the difference between someone who is forgiven much and someone who has been forgiven little?  Are some people greater sinners than others, or is it simply a matter of our own perception?  Jesus Himself answers this question beautifully in the following story.

Loving God More.

You hear a lot today from the pulpit about loving God: “You’ve gotta love God more! You’ve got to love God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind!”  Yes, the Bible in the Old Testament does say that and, in fact, so did Jesus Himself in response to one of His questioners.

Loving God more would solve a lot of problems in the Church, wouldn’t it?  But how can we make it happen when humans constantly, easily fall short!  Try as we might, we just are not consistent.  Well fear not, Church!  Jesus shows us how it can effortlessly happen in this account of His visit to one of the local religious leaders.

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Simon The Pharisee.

Jesus had been invited to the home of a Pharisee named, “Simon.”  As they sat having dinner, a woman came in and began weeping at His feet, anointing them with expensive perfume, then wiping her tears away with her hair.

Simon, repulsed by her act, thought to himself, “If this man were really a prophet, he would know what kind of woman is touching him. She’s a sinner!”

Expensive Ointment.

In all likelihood, she was a harlot, a very common occupation in those days.  You see, back then when a woman was widowed, if there was no man in her life to support her, she was either reduced to begging or she turned to the oldest profession to make a living.
Curious, isn’t it, that she knew exactly where condescending Simon’s house was?  Hmmm….she had probably been there a “few” times.
The ointment she lavished on Jesus was incredibly expensive, worth an entire year’s wages!  This Pharisee was most likely a frequent “contributor,” shall we say, to her income.  But like the hypocrite he was, he looked down his nose at her appearance in his home in front of polite company.
(Woman washes Jesus’ feet with her tears and dries them with her hair)
An Object Lesson.
Jesus knew what Simon was thinking and proceeded to tell him the following story:
41″A man loaned money to two people—500 pieces of silver {that’s a whole lot} to one and 50 pieces {a very small amount} to the other. 42 But neither of them could repay him, so he kindly forgave them both, canceling their debts. Who do you suppose loved him more after that?”

43 Simon answered,“I suppose the one for whom he canceled the larger debt.”
{If there’s one thing the pharisees understand, it’s money!}
44 “Then He {Jesus} turned to the woman and said to Simon,“Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave Me no water for My feet, but she has washed My feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head. 45 You gave Me no kiss, but this woman has not ceased to kiss My feet since the time I came in. 46 You did not anoint My head with oil, but this woman has anointed My feet with fragrant oil. 47 Therefore I say to you, her sins, which are many, are *forgiven, for she *loved much. But to whom little is **forgiven, the same **loves little.”

Perfect Tense Forgiveness.
In English, the word “forgiven” appears several times, but two different Greek tenses are used.  When Jesus spoke to the woman, He used the perfect tense.  Perfect tense in Greek means a ONE-TIME, NEVER-TO-BE-REPEATED ACT.  
This indicates that, though not recorded for us, this woman had an encounter with Jesus sometime before this story took place.  He was reminding her that He had cleansed her entire life–past, present, FUTURE at that time.  He was also reminding her of her continuous right standing before God, her PERFECT TENSE FORGIVENESS.  

It is this PERFECT TENSE knowledge–that your ENTIRE LIFE is cleansed–which caused her and, for that matter, causes anyone, to LOVE JESUS MUCH.

Present Tense Forgiveness.

But…..”to whom little is **forgiven, the same **loves little.”  In this sentence, Jesus uses the PRESENT TENSE.  Present tense indicated an action that is on going.    

Simon is like many Christians today.  He did not understand that forgiveness is not only for your past and present sins:   It is for your future as well.  Like him, they believe that you must keep on going to God to ask forgiveness as sins are committed in order to be acceptable to Godl.  They have PRESENT TENSE FORGIVENESS.
This is simply not scriptural.  Church, you are forgiven for your entire life.  The blood of Jesus cleaned your entire life of ALL sin.  The war is over!  
You HAVE–present tense–PEACE with God.  
You don’t need to go to God again and again and again and again and again and again to ask forgiveness of your sins as they are committed.  We confess our sins to God, not in order to be forgiven, but because we already are.  

It is this MISunderstanding which caused Simon, and causes Christians today, to LOVE JESUS LITTLE.

Wrong Focus.

Many pastors are struggling today, scratching their heads wondering why their congregations don’t love God more.  At the risk of pointing out right from wrong, I suggest that they’re looking in the wrong direction.

You see, as long as SIN CONSCIOUSNESS is expounded upon, THAT WILL NEVER CHANGE.  They are trying to correct wrong behavior by teaching right behavior.  In other words, by preaching LAW.

It is GRACE that saved us.  It is GRACE that will lead us home.  It is GRACE that is greater than ALL your sins!  You cannot out-sin God’s GRACE!

What do you have to do to preach the Law?  You have to push the Mercy Seat, Jesus, aside, take the stone tablets out of the Ark, and expound on it, figuratively speaking.  Pushing aside the Mercy Seat didn’t end well for the men of Beth Shemesh.  You can read all about what happened to them by following the link below.  God’s holy anger lashed out at them, killing 70 men and 50 chief men:

https://emmausroadministries.wordpress.com/2016/03/16/why-did-the-oxen-stumble/

RIGHTEOUSNESS CONSCIOUSNESS.
What we need is not sin consciousness, but a consciousness of our right standing in Christ!  Believers who understand that God’s AMAZING GRACE has cleansed their entire lives love Jesus much.  That is why the Holy Spirit documented this story in the Bible.  Grace is the antidote to sin, NOT  LAW.  Behavior modification happens from a changed heart; from the inside out.  
Where the church has failed is in trying to reverse that order.  THEY HAVE IT BACKWARDS.
Self-Righteousness.
Simon didn’t understand that he was just as great a sinner as the woman. Self-righteousness will do that to you. We think we’re doin’ ok, trying to be all that we think Jesus wants us to be when, all along, we are focused on ourselves and our performance–on the LAW–instead of on Jesus–GRACE.
Not so this woman.  She knew more than this well-educated man.  She knew she was a great sinner.

The Purpose Of The Law.

The law was designed to expose our sin and reveal just how powerless and inadequate we are.  That it does very well.  It was never give for use to try and keep.  It showscases our desperate need for a Savior; for JESUS!


Unless we truly see how bad we are, or were when Jesus saved us, and of how much we’ve been forgiven, we will never love Jesus much.  We will never understand the magnitude of His marvelous grace until we see the blackness of our own heart.

If you’re born again, you no longer have a black heart but the new heart of flesh Jesus gave you.  You just need to understand that all your sins means even your future ones, not just the past up to now.  You know, PERFECT TENSE as opposed to PRESENT TENSE understanding of forgiveness.

Why are future sins removed?  Because #1, God doesn’t live in your time zone.  He is outside time and, #2, when Jesus died, all your sins were future, yet they are all gone when you look to the cross and ask Jesus to be your substitute.  He doesn’t have to come down again and die all over again.  He died ONCE FOR ALL TIME.

The Problem Of The Flesh.

Now, if you think you are, or weren’t, all that bad after you come to Christ, God will show you the depth of your depravity.  He will allow you to clearly see that in your flesh dwells NO GOOD THING.

How To Keep Sin In The Church.

The Church desperately needs to hear this message today. We need to hear that ALL OUR SINS OF OUR ENTIRE LIFE ARE CLEANSED.  Focusing on sin, the flesh, the devil, sinful lifestyles and practices actually keeps sin in the church.

Again, at the risk of teaching law, THEY ARE POINTING IN THE WRONG DIRECTION.  You can only walk where you are looking.  If you are hearing that kind of preaching, it makes you think that sin is greater than grace.  AS IF!!!

I repeat:  YOU CANNOT OUT SIN GOD’S GRACE.  TURN AROUND 180° and look behind you. JESUS IS THERE.
Look at Him.  See His beauty unveiled.  Focus on Him!

Pastors, the more you unveil Jesus in the scriptures to your people, the more like Him they will become.  Think CHRISTOCENTRIC; NOT EGOCENTRIC.  That is the lesson of the Emmaus Road.  Show them, “NO ONE HAS BEEN FORGIVEN LITTLE.”

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