“And, behold, a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster box of ointment, And stood at his feet behind him weeping, and began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment.Now when the Pharisee which had bidden (invited) him saw it, he spake within himself, saying, This man, if he were a prophet, would have known who and what manner of woman this is that toucheth him: for she is a sinner.” Luke 7:37-39
I have worked in the ministry of Freedom That Lasts for over 6 years now, and I have seen people from all walks of life. Some have come faithfully over the six years, some have moved away, and some have chosen to go on the wrong path. Freedom That Lasts is a Bible study that deals with addictions, and the curriculum and program is set up to help people truly achieve freedom that lasts from the power over sin in their lives. This is done by growing in Christ through prayer, Bible reading, and scripture memorization. We also promote a strong support group amongst one another, and I consider those who attend as family. No matter who comes, it seems like there are two types of people: those who see they have a sin issue and those who attest that they struggle with nothing.
I can relate to those who have a sin issue as I am quite familiar with my own sin problems. I am aware of temptations, struggles, shortcomings and falls. I know what it is like to fall on my face, and I know what it is like to experience the victory that is found only in Jesus Christ. I know of no one on this earth who is not a sinner as the Bible makes this clear. Romans 3:23 states, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” This verse clearly points out that we have all sinned, and it clearly makes us aware that we fall short of the mark. We all struggle with sin, and we are all guilty before God.
I find it difficult to understand the ones who come to FTL and attest they struggle with no addictions. I am not familiar with this lifestyle as the Devil seems to always want to take a foothold in my life. 1 Peter 5:8 states, "Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour." The devil actively seeks to destroy and devour us just as a lion does in the wild. The lion in the wild does not want a pet and a scratch, but he desires your life just as the devil does. Sin is an addiction we all struggle with and will continue to struggle with until we reach Heaven. Sin has plagued mankind since the garden of Eden, and it shows us our need for a Savior.
Jesus never shied away from sinners, and He even dined with them. He would have to have dined with sinners as they are no other people on earth but sinners. The Pharisee did not see himself as a sinner but saw this woman as a sinner due to her less-than-stellar reputation. He failed to see the sin is his own life just as we all do from time to time. We look down on “sinners” and say we struggle with no sin, and we fail to see ourselves as we truly are. 1 John 1:8 states, “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” The woman was grateful to the One who set her free, and she sought to bring Him glory.
Where are you today friend? Do you see yourself as God sees you? Do you brush aside or minimize your own sin and point the finger at others, or are you one who desires to sit at the feet of Jesus and honor Him in gratitude? May we never lose sight of our sinful condition, and may we always desire to be at the feet of Jesus in praise and thankfulness for His ever cleansing of our sin.
Stay in the fight!