And one of the Pharisees desired him that he would eat with him. And he went into the Pharisee's house, and sat down to meat.…
Probably when Simon invited our Saviour to dine there were a great many that wondered why. Simon was, I suppose, a very good-natured fellow, evidently shallow, but easily excited and easily forgetting it. He was a slate, on which you could write that which you could easily rub out. Everybody was running after the Saviour, and Simon was one of those men that liked to catch lions and parade them in his house. He was, therefore, patronizing Christ. Still he did it cautiously. He professed simply to be His gracious entertainer. Christ went. It is of more importance perhaps to ask, "Why did He go there? " Well, He went, because He was neither an ascetic nor a rigorous moralist, after the modern sense of the term. He never was afraid of soiling Himself. He carried in Him the light that dispels darkness. Nor do I suppose He ever once thought, " What will folks say? Is it best for Me to go?" While they were reclining there was an uninvited guest that came in, "And behold!" — an exclamation, to arrest attention — "a woman which was a sinner." Her outward life had been bad. But there was a woman within the woman, a soul hidden within the body. How knew she of Christ? She had heard Him doubtless. She had beheld His face and His eye of mercy, and the gentleness with which He treated children and the poor, and she had said within herself, "If there is a good man living, that man is good." So, hearing that He was gone to dine with the Pharisee, she determined to go and see Him. What kind of a teacher must that man have been who could inspire in a harlot's bosom those conceptions of human and Divine greatness as manifested in Christ, and who could also draw towards Him from out all the lines of wickedness a creature like unto this woman? Christ was a prophet, and more than a prophet. He saw not only the woman, but also the man; her depth and power, his shallowness and feebleness. He then preaches a short sermon to Simon. No words had passed, but He answers Simon's thought. Let us believe, with all true charity, that from the hour of her resurrection she followed the footsteps of her new-found Master, and that she dwells with Him in the purity and the bliss of immortality. Now translate from the wonderful scene some lessons.
1. Your own duty. Separate not yourselves from those that have gone wrong.
2. Have faith to believe that under bad appearances there yet lurks and there yet sighs a soul, a moral conscience.
3. Never forget that when a man has gone wrong he can go right. God is on the side of every man that, having stumbled and fallen, gathers himself together and gets up; and, though his garments may for a long time be soiled, he is on his feet again, and prepared to resist again. Do not forget the all-loving heart of God.
(H. W. Beecher.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And one of the Pharisees desired him that he would eat with him. And he went into the Pharisee's house, and sat down to meat.