“And he said to the woman, Thy faith hath saved thee; go in peace.”
Jesus had been invited to eat in the home of a Pharisee. While He was there, a woman from the city who was a notable sinner came and stood behind Jesus. She, weeping, brought an alabaster box of ointment with her and began to wash His feet with her tears and wipe them with her hair. She kissed His feet and anointed them with the ointment. The Pharisee was critical that Jesus would receive such a sinner. Jesus used the occasion to teach that her love for Him was greater because her sins, which were many, were forgiven. Jesus told the woman that her sins were forgiven, and then stated, “Thy faith hath saved thee.” What wonderful words these are to the seeking and repentant soul!
This woman knew she was a sinner and was as guilty as could be. She knew that she could not save herself. She realized that Jesus was the Savior; and by faith, she trusted Him. What was it that brought salvation to her heart? “Thy faith hath saved thee.” This is why Jesus came from Heaven: to seek and to save lost sinners. He came to forgive sins, reconcile the lost to Himself, and to give the gift of righteousness and eternal life.
The Pharisees criticized Jesus for His interaction with sinners. They could not relate to His compassion. Although they were religious, they had no genuine concern for those who were spiritually lost. There is something seriously wrong with any church or religion that does not demonstrate a commitment to reaching others with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Jesus cared about those for whom no one else cared. He went where the sinners were. He wanted to see them converted, and all sinners are saved the same way: “Thy faith hath saved thee.” Every person who desires to be born again must place his faith in the shed blood and victorious resurrection of Jesus Christ.
This is our message to the unsaved – by and through faith, they can be saved. Many lost sinners do not understand this simple, yet powerful news. They think salvation must depend on some merit of their own or religious work they do. Yet, they can be saved just like this sinful woman in our text. They must humble themselves as guilty sinners, turn from their sin, and trust in Christ and Him alone for salvation. This is our message: salvation through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.