Monday, June 2, 2014

The Intimacy of Her Hair

And there was a woman in the city who was a sinner; and when she learned that He was reclining at the table in the Pharisee's house, she brought an alabaster vial of perfume, and standing behind Him at His feet, weeping, she began to wet His feet with her tears, and kept wiping them with the hair of her head, and kissing His feet and anointing them with the perfume. (Luke 7:37, 38 NASB)

Even today, strictly Orthodox Jewish  married women cover their hair when in public. Paul wrote that her hair was a woman's glory and, when praying or prophesying, it should be covered. With that in mind, it changes how we understand this passage. 

Approaching Jesus from behind, she knelt at his feet, tears streaming down her face in such a flood that it was wetting His feet. Having no cloth to dry Him, she reached up, let down her hair, and used those long tresses to dry the tears. It was, for that time, a scandalous display. Women did not let their hair down in this manner before men who were not their husbands.  In fact, the display of a woman's hair was considered "enticing" and was reserved only for her husband. 

Using her hair to dry His feet was an act of extreme intimacy and love. Only a prostitute would be so emboldened in public, they probably thought. There was no way those Pharisees could understand the depth of emotion and the baring of her soul before Jesus, the One who knew all and still loved her. What they thought about her likely never entered her mind. She was worshipping her Lord, and her eyes were fixed on Jesus. 

It is not her hair, but the depth of emotion and love that drove her to use her hair, that we should emulate. Her all-out, nothing-held-back love is something we we would do well to embrace. 

How fervent is our love for Christ? What do we hold back? How often do we dampen our response to Him in order to avoid the censure of those around us?

Today, pray that we and our loved ones would have hearts so filled with love for Christ that we hold nothing back from Him. 
Link to last night's post: