Luke 7:49
And they that sat at meat with him began to say within themselves, Who is this that forgiveth sins also?
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(49) Who is this that forgiveth sins also?—Better, Who is this that even forgiveth sins? The thought that underlay the question, though apparently the questioners were different, was the same as that which had found utterance when like words were spoken in the synagogue at Capernaum. (See Luke 5:21; Mark 2:6; and Notes on Matthew 9:3.)

Luke 7:49-50. And they that sat at meat began to say — Not indeed openly, but within themselves, Who is this, &c. — “They were exceedingly offended at the power which he claimed. But Jesus, contemning all their malicious murmurings, repeated his assurance by telling the woman that her faith had saved her from the punishment of her sins, and bidding her depart in peace, that is, impressed with a strong sense of the love of God, and filled with the satisfaction which naturally arises from that attainment.” — Macknight. Upon the whole of this story, let us learn from the candour with which Christ accepted this invitation, and the gentleness and prudence with which he behaved at this insnaring entertainment, to mingle the wisdom of the serpent with the innocence and sweetness of the dove; and neither absolutely to refuse all favours, nor severely to resent all neglects, from those whose friendship might at best be very dubious, and their intimacy by no means safe. Above all, let us be careful to avoid that very ill temper which the Pharisees showed, in upbraiding this poor, humble penitent with the scandals of her former life. Where we have reason to believe that sin has been lamented and forsaken, and consequently that God has forgiven it, let us cheerfully receive those whom our holy Master has not rejected; and if the remembrance of former irregularities cannot be entirely lost, let it only engage us to magnify the riches of divine grace toward such persons, and to rejoice with them in the display of it. See Doddridge.

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!Who is this ... - A very pertinent question. Who could he be but God? Man could not do it, and there is no wonder that they were amazed. 49, 50. they that sat … Who is this, &c.—No wonder they were startled to hear One who was reclining at the same couch, and partaking of the same hospitalities with themselves, assume the awful prerogative of "even forgiving sins." But so far from receding from this claim, or softening it down, our Lord only repeats it, with two precious additions: one, announcing what was the one secret of the "forgiveness" she had experienced, and which carried "salvation" in its bosom; the other, a glorious dismissal of her in that "peace" which she had already felt, but is now assured she has His full warrant to enjoy! This wonderful scene teaches two very weighty truths: (1) Though there be degrees of guilt, insolvency, or inability to wipe out the dishonor done to God, is common to all sinners. (2) As Christ is the Great Creditor to whom all debt, whether great or small, contracted by sinners is owing, so to Him belongs the prerogative of forgiving it. This latter truth is brought out in the structure and application of the present parable as it is nowhere else. Either then Jesus was a blaspheming deceiver, or He is God manifest in the flesh. These were either the Pharisees, who thought that Christ blasphemed in arrogating to himself such a power as belonged to God alone; or the others, who speak this rather in admiration; but it is probable the former are here meant.

And they that sat at meat with him,.... Other Pharisees that sat at Simon's table with Christ, whom he had invited as guests, on this occasion of seeing and conversing with Jesus; or some of Simon's family, that sat down to eat with him;

began to say within themselves; that is, either thought and reasoned in their own minds, or whispered among themselves:

who is this that forgiveth sins also? who not content to transgress the traditions of the elders, by admitting a sinful woman to touch him, but assumes that to himself which is peculiar to God, to forgive sin: this they said, not as wondering at him, what manner of person he must be, that with such authority pronounced the forgiveness of sin, as Grotius thinks; but rather as offended with him, and filled with indignation against him, and so censuring and reproaching him for wickedness and blasphemy.

And they that sat at meat with him began to say within themselves, Who is this that forgiveth sins also?
Luke 7:49. Ἤρξαντο] The beginning, the rising up of this thought, is noteworthy in Luke’s estimation.

τίς οὗτός ἐστιν κ.τ.λ.] a question of displeasure.

καί: even.

Luke 7:49. τίς οὗτος: again the stupid cavil about usurpation of the power to pardon (Luke 5:21).

49. began to say within themselves] His words caused a shock of surprised silence which did not as yet dare to vent itself in open murmurs.

Luke 7:49. Τίς οὗτός ἐστιν, who is this?) Answer: It is the Son of man.—καὶ) even. It is a greater exercise of power to forgive sins, as far as the reality is concerned, than to heal miraculously a sick man.

Luke 7:49They began

Luke notes the first uprising of the thought.

Within themselves (ἐν ἑαυτοῖς)

Better, among themselves, as Rev., in margin.

Also (καὶ)

Much better as Rev., "who even forgiveth sins."

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