Luke 7:37
Parallel Verses
New International Version
A woman in that town who lived a sinful life learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee's house, so she came there with an alabaster jar of perfume.

New Living Translation
When a certain immoral woman from that city heard he was eating there, she brought a beautiful alabaster jar filled with expensive perfume.

English Standard Version
And behold, a woman of the city, who was a sinner, when she learned that he was reclining at table in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster flask of ointment,

New American Standard Bible
And there was a woman in the city who was a sinner; and when she learned that He was reclining at the table in the Pharisee's house, she brought an alabaster vial of perfume,

King James Bible
And, behold, a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster box of ointment,

Holman Christian Standard Bible
And a woman in the town who was a sinner found out that Jesus was reclining at the table in the Pharisee's house. She brought an alabaster jar of fragrant oil

International Standard Version
There was a woman who was a notorious sinner in that city. When she learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee's home, she took an alabaster jar of perfume

NET Bible
Then when a woman of that town, who was a sinner, learned that Jesus was dining at the Pharisee's house, she brought an alabaster jar of perfumed oil.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
And a sinner woman who was in the city, when she knew that he was staying in the Pharisee's house, she took an alabaster vase of ointment.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
A woman who lived a sinful life in that city found out that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee's house. So she took a bottle of perfume

Jubilee Bible 2000
And, behold, a woman who had been a sinner in the city, when she knew that Jesus sat at food in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster box of ointment,

King James 2000 Bible
And, behold, a woman in the city, who was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat to eat in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster flask of ointment,

American King James Version
And, behold, a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster box of ointment,

American Standard Version
And behold, a woman who was in the city, a sinner; and when she knew that he was sitting at meat in the Pharisee's house, she brought an alabaster cruse of ointment,

Douay-Rheims Bible
And behold a woman that was in the city, a sinner, when she knew that he sat at meat in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster box of ointment;

Darby Bible Translation
and behold, a woman in the city, who was a sinner, and knew that he was sitting at meat in the house of the Pharisee, having taken an alabaster box of myrrh,

English Revised Version
And behold, a woman which was in the city, a sinner; and when she knew that he was sitting at meat in the Pharisee's house, she brought an alabaster cruse of ointment,

Webster's Bible Translation
And behold, a woman in the city, who was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at table in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster-box of ointment,

Weymouth New Testament
And there was a woman in the town who was a notorious sinner. Having learnt that Jesus was at table in the Pharisee's house she brought a flask of perfume,

World English Bible
Behold, a woman in the city who was a sinner, when she knew that he was reclining in the Pharisee's house, she brought an alabaster jar of ointment.

Young's Literal Translation
and lo, a woman in the city, who was a sinner, having known that he reclineth (at meat) in the house of the Pharisee, having provided an alabaster box of ointment,
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

7:36-50 None can truly perceive how precious Christ is, and the glory of the gospel, except the broken-hearted. But while they feel they cannot enough express self-abhorrence on account of sin, and admiration of his mercy, the self-sufficient will be disgusted, because the gospel encourages such repenting sinners. The Pharisee, instead of rejoicing in the tokens of the woman's repentance, confined his thoughts to her former bad character. But without free forgiveness none of us can escape the wrath to come; this our gracious Saviour has purchased with his blood, that he may freely bestow it on every one that believes in him. Christ, by a parable, forced Simon to acknowledge that the greater sinner this woman had been, the greater love she ought to show to Him when her sins were pardoned. Learn here, that sin is a debt; and all are sinners, are debtors to Almighty God. Some sinners are greater debtors; but whether our debt be more or less, it is more than we are able to pay. God is ready to forgive; and his Son having purchased pardon for those who believe in him, his gospel promises it to them, and his Spirit seals it to repenting sinners, and gives them the comfort. Let us keep far from the proud spirit of the Pharisee, simply depending upon and rejoicing in Christ alone, and so be prepared to obey him more zealously, and more strongly to recommend him unto all around us. The more we express our sorrow for sin, and our love to Christ, the clearer evidence we have of the forgiveness of our sins. What a wonderful change does grace make upon a sinner's heart and life, as well as upon his state before God, by the full remission of all his sins through faith in the Lord Jesus!

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 37. - And, behold, a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee's house. The text in the older authorities is more forcible: "a woman which was a sinner in that city." Her miserable way of life would thus be well known to Simon and other of the guests. This sad detail would serve to bring out the contrast in more vivid colours. In these Oriental feasts the houses were often left open, and uninvited strangers frequently passed in through the open courtyard into the guest-chamber, and looked on. She had heard Jesus already, perhaps often, and had drunk in his pleading words, begging sinners to turn and to come to him for peace. Perhaps what had decided her to take this step of boldly seeking out the Master were words apparently spoken about this time (in St. Matthew's Gospel they follow directly after the discourse respecting the Baptist just related), "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest," etc. (Matthew 11:28-30). It was a bold step for one like her to press uninvited, in broad daylight, into the house of a rigid purist like Simon; but the knowledge that Jesus (though personally, as she thought, she was unknown to him) was there, gave her courage; she felt no one would dare to thrust her out of the presence of the strange loving Master, who so earnestly had bidden the sin-weary come to him, and he would give them rest! Brought an alabaster box of ointment. Pliny mentions alabaster as the best material for pots or vessels intended for these precious ointments. It was softer than marble, and easily scooped into pots or bottles. These costly unguents and cosmetics were much used by the wealthy Roman ladies. The precious ointment poured over the Redeemer's feet had probably been originally procured for a very different purpose. The word μύρον, translated "ointment," was used for any kind of sweet-smelling vegetable essence, especially that of the myrtle.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

And behold, a woman in the city,.... Not Mary Magdalene, spoken of in Luke 8:2 under another character; and is a different person, who had not been taken notice of by the evangelist before; nor Mary the sister of Lazarus, who is said to anoint the feet of Christ, and wipe them with her hair, John 12:3. The character given of this woman, does not seem so well to agree with her; at least, the fact here recorded, cannot be the same with that; for this was in Galilee, and that in Bethany; this in the house of Simon the Pharisee, that in the house of Lazarus; this was some time before Christ's death, and after this he went a circuit through every city and village, that was but six days before his death, and after which he never went from those parts; nor is this account the same with the history, recorded in Matthew 26:6 for that fact was done in Bethany also, this in Galilee; that in the house of Simon: the leper, this in the house of Simon the Pharisee; that was but two days before the death of Christ, this a considerable time before; the ointment that woman poured, was poured upon his head, this upon his feet: who this woman was, is not certain, nor in what city she dwelt; it seems to be the same in which the Pharisee's house was; and was no doubt one of the cities of Galilee, as Naim, Capernaum, or some other at no great distance from these:

which was a sinner; a notorious sinner, one that was known by all to have been a person of a wicked, life and conversation; a lewd woman, a vile prostitute, an harlot, commonly reputed so: the Arabic word here used, signifies both a sinner and a whore (k); and so the word, sinners, seems to be used elsewhere by Luke; see Luke 15:1 compared with Matthew 21:31. Some think she was a Gentile, Gentiles being reckoned by the Jews sinners, and the worst of sinners; but this does not appear:

when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee's house; having observed it herself, that he was invited by him, and went with him, or being informed of it by others,

brought an alabaster box of ointment: ointment was used to be put in vessels made of "alabaster", which kept it pure and incorrupt; and this stone was found about Damascus, (l) so that there might be plenty of it in Judea; at least it might be easily had, and such boxes might be common; and as this woman appears to have been a lewd person, she might have this box of ointment by her to anoint herself with, that she might recommend herself to her gallants. The historian (m) reports, that

"Venus gave to Phaon an alabaster box with ointment, with which Phaon, being anointed, became the most beautiful of men, and the women of Mitylene were taken with the love of him.''

If this box had been provided with such a view; it was now used to another and different purpose.

(k) Vid. Castell. Lex. Heptaglott. col. 1195. (l) Plin. Nat. Hist. l. 36. c. 8. (m) Aelian. var. Hist. l. 12. c. 8.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

37, 38. a sinner—one who had led a profligate life. Note.—There is no ground whatever for the popular notion that this woman was Mary Magdalene, nor do we know what her name was. (See on [1593]Lu 8:2.)

an alabaster box of ointment—a perfume vessel, in some cases very costly (Joh 12:5). "The ointment has here a peculiar interest, as the offering by a penitent of what had been an accessory in her unhallowed work of sin" [Alford].

Luke 7:37 Additional Commentaries
Context
A Sinful Woman Anoints Jesus
36Now one of the Pharisees was requesting Him to dine with him, and He entered the Pharisee's house and reclined at the table. 37And there was a woman in the city who was a sinner; and when she learned that He was reclining at the table in the Pharisee's house, she brought an alabaster vial of perfume, 38and standing behind Him at His feet, weeping, she began to wet His feet with her tears, and kept wiping them with the hair of her head, and kissing His feet and anointing them with the perfume.…
Cross References
Matthew 21:31
"Which of the two did what his father wanted?" "The first," they answered. Jesus said to them, "Truly I tell you, the tax collectors and the prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God ahead of you.

Matthew 26:6
While Jesus was in Bethany in the home of Simon the Leper,

Matthew 26:7
a woman came to him with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, which she poured on his head as he was reclining at the table.

Mark 14:3
While he was in Bethany, reclining at the table in the home of Simon the Leper, a woman came with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, made of pure nard. She broke the jar and poured the perfume on his head.

Luke 7:36
When one of the Pharisees invited Jesus to have dinner with him, he went to the Pharisee's house and reclined at the table.

Luke 7:38
As she stood behind him at his feet weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them and poured perfume on them.

John 12:1
Six days before the Passover, Jesus came to Bethany, where Lazarus lived, whom Jesus had raised from the dead.

John 12:3
Then Mary took about a pint of pure nard, an expensive perfume; she poured it on Jesus' feet and wiped his feet with her hair. And the house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume.
Treasury of Scripture

And, behold, a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster box of ointment,

which.

Luke 7:34,39 The Son of man is come eating and drinking; and you say, Behold a …

Luke 5:30,32 But their scribes and Pharisees murmured against his disciples, saying, …

Luke 18:13 And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as …

Luke 19:7 And when they saw it, they all murmured, saying, That he was gone …

Matthew 21:31 Whether of them two did the will of his father? They say to him, …

John 9:24,31 Then again called they the man that was blind, and said to him, Give …

Romans 5:8 But God commends his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, …

1 Timothy 1:9,15 Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for …

1 Peter 4:18 And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and …

an.

Matthew 26:7 There came to him a woman having an alabaster box of very precious …

Mark 14:3 And being in Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, as he sat at meat…

John 11:2 (It was that Mary which anointed the Lord with ointment, and wiped …

John 12:2,3 There they made him a supper; and Martha served: but Lazarus was …

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