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Connect the Testaments

August 10: Love, Praise, Forgiveness
Isaiah 20:1–22:25; Luke 7:36–8:15; Job 5:8–16
Our praise for God is often directly connected to accepting and confessing our brokenness. Our capacity to love Him is tied to the realization of how much He has forgiven us.
The woman in Luke 7 who anointed Jesus’ feet is described with one phrase: She was a sinner. We’re not given clarifying detail, but we do know her sin was notorious and, as a result, she was marginalized by society. She was not only weighed down by her sin; her public identity was grounded in it, and she could not hide it. She knew that she needed to receive forgiveness from the only one who could provide it. Her necessity made her bold: She came to Simon the Pharisee’s house to wash and anoint Jesus’ feet.
Her behavior created quite a spectacle. Simon the Pharisee was quick to condemn her actions and question Jesus’ decision to show her compassion. But Jesus turned the tables on him. While the woman was aware of her brokenness—and was all the more grateful for forgiveness—Simon ran with those who had built up a charade of holiness.
Jesus told Simon, “For this reason I tell you, her sins—which were many—have been forgiven, for she loved much. But the one to whom little is forgiven loves little” (Luke 7:47).
Our praise for Jesus—the way we speak of Him and the way we speak of our sin and forgiveness—is a reflection of the state of our hearts. Because our hearts are inclined to be prideful, it’s often easier for us to defend our sin than to confess it. It’s easier to go about our religious activities while rationalizing our sin. But unless we drop the charade and confess the true state of our hearts, we’ll never honor Him as we should.
Do you “love little”? What holds you back from expressing praise?
Rebecca Van Noord


 Barry, John D., and Rebecca Kruyswijk. Connect the Testaments: A One-Year Daily Devotional with Bible Reading Plan. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2012. Print.

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Revised Common Lectionary. Bellingham, WA: Faithlife, 2009. Print.