Jesus anointed by a sinful woman
Describe the situation of a young woman left alone in the world and the choices she might have to face to support herself – begging, slavery, or breaking God's law in order to obtain money – by choosing the latter she would at least be able to run her own home and choose who abused her.
Maybe mention somebody you know who has had to make a similar choice – I know a “bag lady” in Bristol whose life decisions have led her to misery and deprivation. She feels hated and excluded from society.
Describe Simon the Pharisee and his disgust at what he heard of Jesus teaching that God loved sinners - against everything Simon had ever been taught. He decided to teach this young Rabbi a lesson. Humiliated him by ignoring his arrival - no kiss on the hands, no water for his feet, no oil for his head, no leading him to a position of respect at the table. Any normal rabbi would have been insulted and offended to the point where he would not join the feast at all but leave. Jesus took up a place at the very end of the table where guests of little value would recline. The custom of allowing villagers in to stand round the edge and admire the feast and listen to the wise conversation meant that the woman could slip in unobserved - though some scholars think Simon may have “planted” her in order to embarrass Jesus.
Luke 7: 36-50
A beautiful Bible story written by Korky and Anni Davey (OAC ministries). You can however also tell the story without a painting.