Luke 7:40-42 40 And Jesus answering said ... I have somewhat to say unto thee. And he saith, Master, say on. 41 There was a certain creditor which had two debtors: the one owed five hundred pence, and the other fifty. 42 And when they had nothing to pay, he frankly forgave them both. Tell me therefore, which of them will love him most?
1. Once a woman silent stood
While Jesus sat at meat;
From her eyes she poured a flood,
To wash his sacred feet:
Shame and wonder, joy and love,
All at once possessed her mind,
That she e'er so vile could prove,
Yet now forgiveness find.
2. "How came this vile woman here?
Will Jesus notice such?
Sure, if he a prophet were,
He would disdain her touch!"
Simon thus, with scornful heart,
Slighted one whom Jesus loved,
But her Savior took her part,
And thus his pride reproved.
3. "If two men in debt were bound,
One less, the other more;
Fifty, or five hundred pound,
And both alike were poor;
Should the lender both forgive,
When he saw them both distressed;
Which of them would you believe,
Engaged to love him best?"
4. "Surely he who much did owe,"
The Pharisee replied;
Then our Lord, "By judging so,
Thou dost for her decide:
Simon, if like her you knew,
How much you forgiveness need;
You like her had acted too,
And welcomed me indeed!
5. "When the load of sin is felt,
And much forgiveness known;
Then the heart of course will melt,
Though hard before as stone:
Blame not then, her love and tears,
Greatly she in debt has been:
But I have removed her fears,
And pardoned all her sin."
6. When I read this woman's case,
Her love and humble zeal;
I confess, with shame of face,
My heart is made of steel;
Much has been forgiven to me,
Jesus paid my heavy score,
What a creature must I be,
That I can love no more!
Written by John Newton: Copied from The Christian's Duty, exhibited in a series of hymns, 1791, No. 206