My theology teacher back when I was in the School of Campus Ministry made a remark that forever changed the way I viewed every person’s journey to an eternity with Jesus.
“You’ll be surprised who you’ll see in heaven,” he said.
Interesting how our human minds would naturally categorize sin. Using something without the permission of the owner, which one might conveniently call “borrowing” when discovered, could be level 1, stealing could be level 5, robbery should probably be level 10, robbery with homicide is on the level that points you straight to hell.
I think about this after reading Jesus’ response to Simon the Pharisee’s soliloquy (and after getting amused at how Jesus would always respond to thoughts directed to oneself) in Luke 7:36-49.
I think Simon did so much sizing up that day.
Seeing how he questioned Jesus’ actions towards the sinful woman, speaking only under his breath, I think of the possibility that he invited Jesus to eat with him so he can see for himself if what he has been hearing about the man is true.
“If this man were a prophet, he would have known who and what sort of woman this is who is touching him, for she is a sinner,” he said.
No wonder Jesus answered him in a quantifiable manner.
He spoke of varying debts in the same currency with the moneylender treating the debtors all the same. But one who is forgiven much loves much.
Our perceived notion on the varying levels of sin could easily cloud our view of the fact that God treats all sin the same. No one person is worthy of His touch, His love, His forgiveness, His blessing. But He loves us all the same.
We are equally distant from Him, yet we are equally, unfathomably loved.
Simon sized the woman up on the basis of her sin. Simon probably sized Jesus up on the basis of how He responded to the woman. Jesus showed us the magnitude of His love.
If Jesus sized us up only on the basis of His holiness, we would all be on the level that points us straight to hell. But He doesn’t. He covers our sin with the size of His love.
May we live through our days ever reminded that we have been forgiven much so we can love Him in grateful adoration and love others as He loved us.