Sermon summaries and audio files
Eckardtesian Thought: I think, therefore I write . . .
A great contrast is noted between the Pharisee and the sinful woman. The Pharisee had invited Jesus to dine with him, but he scoffed about the sinful woman who came up behind Jesus and touched him. She is a sinner. She is the dregs of society.
And so she is, for prostitution is a despicable sin. Sexual sins are among the worst kind, for they abuse the blessed gift of God's appointed means of procreation. We become participants in the continuation of the human race, but these kind of sins put that to scorn. So indeed this woman is a sinner, and everyone knows it who lives in her town. But Jesus is an itinerant preacher, moving about from place to place. Yet if he were a prophet, he would still have known, thinks the Pharisee.
Now behold this woman. Jesus must know her, for she already knows him. She has already learned of his mercy, which has already pulled her out of her dreadful gloomy state. And here she becomes overwhelmed. Her tears well up and overflow, and streak down her cheeks, and onto the ground, and onto Jesus' feet. So she, troubled by this, and having no napkin with which to wipe them off, uses her own hair, her long prostitute's hair. But she already knows his kindness and love. So she, unlike the Pharisee, loves him much, for she was forgiven much.
Beloved, learn from her! You are the woman. For though you may not have been pulled from the dregs of society as she was, you still have the same sinful heart. This is the depth of sin, of natural wickedness, of our own uncleanness, born blind, dead, and enemies of God. Yet we, too, have received mercy. Let your reason for loving Jesus be this, then, that you have been forgiven much. For he has no use for your love if it is merely a show of your piety. Let her contrition be yours, let her tears be yours, let her love be yours. And on receiving him her, let your life become one which loves him for this reason: that you have been forgiven much. Sermon for Midweek of Trinity XI.