If we’re going to worship the Lord, we need to know why we do it.
Luke 7:41-47 “‘A certain moneylender had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. When they could not pay, he cancelled the debt of both. Now which of them will love him more?’ Simon answered, ‘the one, I suppose, for whom he cancelled the larger debt.’ And he said to him, ‘you have judged rightly.’ The turning toward the woman he said to Simon, ‘do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave me no water for my feet but she has wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. You gave me no kiss, but from the time I came in she has not ceased to kiss my feet. You did not anoint my head with oil, but she has anointed my feet with ointment. Therefore I tell you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven-for she loved much. But he who is forgiven little, loves little.’”
We so often focus on the differences between the debtors, but they were actually very similar:
– They both owed
– Neither could pay
– Both of them were freely forgiven
The obvious difference is that they appeared to owe different amounts:
– One owes 50
– One owes 500
When you think of righteousness or goodness in terms of the 50 or 500 owed, Mother Theresa might be a 50 and Hitler might be a 500. Based on that scale, where do you think you fall?
One night on The Tonight Show, Johnny Carson had Rev. Billy Graham as his guest. Carson asked Graham if he had ever broken one of the ten commandments. Graham responded that he had broken them all, much to Carson’s surprise. Graham then quoted James 2:10,
“For whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all.”
The answer is that we all owe 500. Every single one of us are 500’s because we all cost God the very same thing: THE BLOOD OF JESUS.
How does the understanding that we are all 500’s change the way you view your relationship with God and with others?
Jesus turned to Simon, the religious leader and asked, “Who loved more?”
Simon: “I suppose the one who was forgiven more.”
Jesus: “You’re right.”
Remember…Jesus was ANSWERING SIMON’s THOUGHTS…(“this woman – vile disgusting sinner…”)
Jesus was not teaching that there are those who owe different amounts, but that there are those who think that they are somehow better than others.
Jesus: Simon, you believe this woman owes 500 and you’re disgusted by her.
– She knows she owes 500…and she loves much.
– Simon, you think you owe 50…so you love very little.
Back to the original question; why do we worship? We worship because we owed, we could not pay, and we were freely forgiven.
What are some false motivations we sometimes have for our worship? Keep this message as a reminder of the true reason we worship. Before each time of worship, go to the Lord with a heart of repentance as well as gratitude for the free forgiveness you have been given.