Tuesday, 19 June 2007

Repentance-with style

In Sunday's readings Nathan the prophet admonishes David for his sins in taking Bathsheba and being responsible for what was essentially the murder of her husband Uriah.

David is king and I do not doubt he could have used politician-Hebrew to talk his way out of the situation and could have had Nathan dealt with.

Instead David admits his sin and repents! WOW!

He then goes off to write a psalm leading some famous person whose name escapes to quip "I would sin like David if only I could repent like him."

AFTER his repentance David is forgiven by God, but he still has to pay the temporal cost and he and Bathsheba lose their first born son because of this.

David was a great king, but he never did get a grip of his family. It's a tragic tale in may respects, but in him God chose to make the promise of a Covenant for all the nations that would last forever. This Promise was finally fulfilled when a Son of David was born and like David is prophet, priest and king. Jesus redeems us and forgives us and gives us the New Covenant.

In the New Testament reading we find Jesus in the house of Simon the Pharisee. The woman who comes in and washes Jesus' feet with her hair and anoints him with oil is a woman who knows Jesus-she knows Him well enough to know He has forgiven her and has the authority to do so.

Simon, despite his learning and position in life doesn't recognise Jesus at all. Even so he must have been quite pleased to be seen with Jesus as I cannot imagine a woman such as this would have actually got inside Simon's house. He and Jesus must have been sitting in a more accessible part of Simon's home.

Perhaps Simon had not even invited Jesus inside his home. I am always struck by the fact Jesus points out that Simon had not even done the most basic act of hospitality and had his feet washed.

This strikes me as meaning Simon's invitation had been limited in welcome. Not that Simon is a bad man; the parable Jesus tells implies that Simon is quite a good man really- he just does not love enough.

The repentant woman on the other hand loves with a great love.

I have been forgiven much and I hope I can love much.

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