Kiss His Feet
In Luke 7:36-50, we are introduced to a Pharisee named Simon, and a woman whose named we’re never told. In fact, we don’t know a single word this woman said. Yet, we quickly see that she is God’s poster child for gratitude and devotion -- not for what she said, but for what she did.
In this particular account, Jesus is eating dinner at Simon’s house. The unnamed woman gets wind of this, and makes an unexpected appearance. She walked through the door, braved the cold stares of Simon and his friends, and worked her way through the crowd until she stood at the feet of Jesus as he was reclining at Simon’s table.
When Jesus entered Simon’s house, he slipped off his sandals and was taken to his place at the table. He reclined, leaning on his left arm, so he could eat with his right hand, and his feet were stretched out behind him. And now, standing at his feet was a notorious woman with a flask of oil hanging from her neck by a cord.
A Foot Washing
We don’t know what it was that triggered her emotions, but as she stood there at Jesus’ feet, her eyes flooded with tears, which streamed down her face and began to splash on Jesus’ dusty feet, just below her.
Her warm tears left little pools of dirty water on Christ’s dusty feet, and when she realized what was happening, she dropped to her knees, let down her long dark hair, and began to wipe away the dirty pools of water -- just as Jesus had washed away her sins.
As she dabbed away each stain with a lock of her hair, she kissed the place she had just cleaned. When the Bible says that she kissed his feet, it uses the imperfect tense, which means she kissed them repeatedly -- again and again! As each pool of dust and tears were wiped away, she kissed the clean spot she had created.
When she finally regained her composure and her tears stopped flowing, she lifted the flask from around her neck, unsealed it, and poured its contents on the feet of Jesus, as an act of worship and adoration.
The liquid that this flask contained wasn’t a cheap cooking oil; it was an expensive perfumed oil. It was probably purchased with money from her previous profession. But Jesus received it for what it was: an expression of gratitude and devotion for what he had done for her. We read:
“When a woman who had lived a sinful life in that town learned that Jesus was eating at the pharisee’s house, she brought an alabaster jar of perfume, and as she stood behind him weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them and poured perfume on them” (Luke 7:37-38).
The Two Kisses
We only know of two people in the Bible who kissed Jesus. There were probably more, but we only know of two.
One of them was Judas Iscariot, who kissed Jesus on the cheek to betray him. And the other, was this woman, who kissed Jesus’ feet repeatedly to express her gratitude for saving her from a dark and shameful life.
Judas pretended to follow Jesus, but he became upset with Jesus and betrayed him because he believed that Jesus owed him more than he’d been given.
This woman on the other hand, was deeply devoted to Jesus, because she believed that she owed Jesus everything. And her gratitude fueled her deep devotion to him.
If Jesus walked up to you today and sat down right next to you, which kiss would you give him? Would you greet him with a polite hug and kiss his cheek, while secretly wondering why he hasn’t done more for you? Or would you be flooded with tears of gratitude? Would you fall to your knees and kiss his dusty feet in devotion? Would you frantically look for something, anything precious you could give him in order to say thank you? “Thank you! Thank you!”
How you would respond in a moment like that tells you whether you’re just a pretender who believes that Jesus owes you more and more -- or whether you’re a devoted follower of Jesus, because you are gripped by the truth that you owe Jesus everything!