In a day when men so dominated, Jesus spoke to them but also acknowledged the needs and thoughts of women. Let’s consider some of his parables.
The Pharisees and teachers of the law were picking at Jesus with many complaints.
“This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.” Luke 15:2
This was a left-over complaint from the time Jesus had eaten at Matthew’s house with Matthew’s “sinner” friends. The idea of witnessing to the lost did not seem to be a concern for these law-abiding, self-satisfied leaders.
Jesus told them a parable.
“Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Does he not leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? . . . he says, ‘rejoice with me, I have found my lost sheep’. . . in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons. Luke 15:3-7
Immediately after that illustration, Jesus taught with another parable. This time he addressed the women in the crowd. Imagine how their ears must have perked up.
“Or suppose a woman has ten silver coins and looses one. Does she not light a lamp, sweep the house, and search carefully for it? When she finds it, she says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost coin.’ In the same way, there is rejoicing of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” Luke 15:8-10
On another occasion, some were complaining that while John’s disciples and the Pharisees’ disciples often fasted and prayed, Jesus’ disciples did not fast. Jesus said,
“Can you make the guests of the bridegroom fast while he is with them? But the time will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them; in those days, they will fast.” Luke 5:34-35
In other words, no need to put the old ways on the new thing that God is doing through his Son. Think of it this way,
“No one pours new wine into old wineskins. If he does, the new wine will burst the skins.” Luke 5:37-39
The men were aware that new wine must ferment which makes the skins expand. If you put new wine in old skins that have already expanded, the wine will burst open the old skins. New wine, new skins, new ways.
And for the women in the crowd, Jesus gave another parable.
“No one tears a patch from a new garment and sews it on an old one.” Luke 5:36
The women knew that the old cloth would easily rip away and certainly wouldn’t match! No, Jesus had come to bring new thoughts, new ways of looking at things, deeper concepts, loving hearts, and they were not to be cluttered with old dictatorial thinking.
Once again, he spoke to all, acknowledging even the thoughts and concerns of women—elevating them from a place of shame to a place of honor.
And he continues to reach out to us all, male or female, rich or poor, timid or social, plain or beautiful. He brings honor to our servant hearts.
~ Joyce ~