Now when the Pharisee who had invited Him saw this, he spoke to himself, saying, “This Man, if He were a prophet, would know who and what manner of woman this is who is touching Him, for she is a sinner.”
40 And Jesus answered and said to him, “Simon, I have something to say to you.”
So he said, “Teacher, say it.”
You may be familiar with this interaction in the Scriptures and what comes next, Jesus responds to the private thoughts of Simon the Pharisee about the sinful woman who is with them and gives him a lesson on repentance and humility. He attempts to teach Simon an important lesson.
Simon never voices his doubts about Jesus, never says anything about the woman who he despises and never once states the apparent disdain that he has for both Jesus and his devoted follower.
And yet Jesus knows every single word of it.
Jesus knows the secret thoughts in Simon’s head as he sat there pretending to respect Jesus, pretending to tolerate the woman and pretending to entertain Him. Not only does the Lord know every hair on our head, but every thought that passes through our often wicked and doubtful brain.
Does this give us pause? If not, well you are better at thinking than I, my friend. Some days all sorts of stuff passes through my brain that I would never say out loud. Not that I am like Simon, but things that flash in and want to take up residence that are completely opposite than what the Lord wants for me.
Though we are told in 2 Corinthians 10 to take those thoughts captive:
We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ, 6 being ready to punish every disobedience, when your obedience is complete.
Do we? Honest question – no shame or condemnation attached.
Do we cause them to flee from our minds through obedience to Christ or grab onto them and wallow in them, content with the knowledge that no one knows what is going on in our heads. Are we just pretending to respect Jesus and follow His directions while we are despising our spouse, coveting our neighbor’s wife or envying the success of our friends. Are we rationalizing our pretending because we never actually tell anyone about it or act on it? What was it that Jesus said about lusting for a woman in your mind?
Simon the Pharisee found out the problem with that line of thinking, just like with Simon, Jesus is right there with us and knows the depths of depravity possible in our hearts and minds …He loves us any way…but He is aware of the pretending.
But His kind of love asks better from us. He calls us to give everything to Him, including our thought life, take every thought captive and obey Christ. Do we want to?
Religion allows us to have filthy decadent minds while doing outwardly good things and says we are justified. Jesus says that even our filthly decadent minds must learn to be obedient to Him.
Which one do we choose?