A Study of: Luke 7:48
The third part of this study involves the story of an immoral or sinful woman who came and washed the feet of Jesus with her tears, dried them with her hair, and anointed them with perfume (Luke 7:36-50). John tells a similar story in 12:1-8 about Mary the sister of Martha and Lazarus, but without the key phrase of this discussion, "Your sins have been forgiven." Let's look at Luke 7:47-50.
47 "For this reason I say to you, her sins, which are many, have been forgiven, for she loved much; but he who is forgiven little, loves little."
48 Then He said to her, "Your sins have been forgiven."
49 Those who were reclining at the table with Him began to say to themselves, "Who is this man who even forgives sins?"
50 And He said to the woman, "Your faith has saved you; go in peace."
This is another Biblical example that forgiveness is based solely upon the person's faith and repentant heart. There was no offering of an animal sacrifice. There was no atoning blood. Jesus had not been crucified as the final sacrifice. This forgiveness was offered as a gift of God's grace.
This is also another Biblical example that proves that the entire animal sacrificial system was a concession from God and not a requirement of the Law. Jesus, who was sinless, would not have broken His Father's Law. As He said in Matthew 5:17, He came to fulfill the Law.
Forgiveness is a gift of God's grace. We cannot "buy" it with the blood of an innocent animal, or even the precious blood of Jesus. Salvation and forgiveness come as a result of our faith in God and our repentant heart and soul.
We hope that this little series will provoke some discussion, shake an ivory tower or two, and rattle the cages in which many hierarchical clergy have placed themselves.