It is written in John 1: 4 In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The subject of John chapter1-7 was life. The subject of chapter 8 and 9 is light. The Lord has light to illuminate our dark parts and reveal our true state. It’s painful, but it’s good. We cannot change without light. In today’s passage, we see women whose lives have been changed by the light.
1 but Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. 2 At dawn he appeared again in the temple courts, where all the people gathered around him, and he sat down to teach them. 3 The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the group 4 and said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. 5 In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?” 6 They were using this question as a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing him. But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger. 7 When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” 8 Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground. 9 At this, those who heard began to go away one at a time, the older ones first, until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there. 10 Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” 11 “No one, sir,” she said. “Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.” (John 8: 1-11)
A woman captured in adultery was brought to Jesus (verse 3). It’s probably the current offender. I think they were ambushed with some information. And the scribes and Pharisees used it as a material to sue Jesus. At that time, when legal troubles occurred, it was a rule to bring the problem to the rabbi and have it solved. They regarded Jesus as a rabbi and approached him (verse 4).
At that time, the crime of adultery was the death penalty for both men and women. But they brought only women. They didn’t necessarily need a man because the accusation was the number one reason. Perhaps this man is the one they prepared. Anyway, they wanted to trap Jesus. They ask Jesus. In the Law, Moses commands these women to be stoned. By the way, what do you say (verse 5)?
Law scholars asking the Lord Jesus
Jesus has always said that he has come to invite sinners and has spoken of “love” and “forgiveness.” Therefore, if he follows the claims of Jesus so far, the adulterous woman will also “forgive.” However, forgiveness disregards the law, and he is said to encourage people to commit adultery, and Jesus’ trust is lost.
On the contrary, if he says to judge her (put her to death) according to the Mosaic Law (Leviticus 20:10, Deuteronomy 22:22), he is told that all the claims he has made so far may be different. Its reputation will be lost. He will no longer be called a friend of love and mercy, a sinner.
In other words, religious people asked questions that would make Jesus’ position worse no matter which one he chose. Here is the false authority of the Pharisees. It is an authority only to judge a person. But the authority of Jesus is different. Jesus uses that authority not to judge people, but to save them.
Jesus did not answer their nasty questions, but bent over and wrote on the ground with his fingers (verse 6). I’m wondering what he was writing, but I think it gave them an opportunity to think and reflect. According to the Armenian translation of the New Testament, this passage is translated as follows. “He turned his face and wrote words to condemn them on the ground with his fingers. They saw some of their sins written on them.” He wrote their sins on the ground. It means that he has condemned them. This is an interesting translation, and I think it makes sense.
But instead of reflecting on them, they continued to ask more and more persistent questions. So Jesus got up and said. ” Throw a stone at her first, the innocent of you, ” (verse 7).
Lord Jesus to reply
This word was not a crime against her. It pierced the hearts of the hypocrites suing her. The scribes and Pharisees, who were now trying to get a reason to accuse Jesus, were forced into a position to accuse themselves. Jesus said in the Sermon on the Mount. “Don’t judge, because you won’t be judged.” People are not good enough to judge others. This is human reality. Only God can judge people. Therefore, do not judge people lightly on the surface. Don’t misunderstand ourselves as a judge and put ourselves in the position of God to criticize other churches or Christians.
None of them could claim to be perfect. So they went out from the elders (verse 9). Their lives would have changed if they knelt down and were ashamed and repented of their sins rather than just going out here.
Their zeal to obey the law was to judge others and lacked a remorse for themselves. They are very keen on admitting the sins of others, but they are completely insensitive to their own sins. They didn’t realize until the end that the attitude of justifying themselves was a fundamental sin. The worst case here is someone who throws a stone because he thinks he us innocent. There is no help for it at all.
A drooling adulterous woman
Only Jesus was left in that place. Jesus asks her. “Women, where are they now? Did anyone condemn you?” (Verse 10) She replies. ” There is no one .” (Verse 11) The original text says, “Lord, there is no one.” There is a call to the Lord. She believed in Jesus.
Jesus utters the closing words of this story. ” I will not condemn you either.” (Verse 11) A declaration of forgiveness of sins is made. We have hope here. Only innocent Jesus can declare forgiveness of sins. While they tried to convict the adulterous woman, Jesus tried to forgive and acquit.
“We are not condemned” This is our identity. We are not condemned because our sins are forgiven by the cross of Jesus Christ. For this reason, those in Christ Jesus are never condemned now. Because the Principle of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the principles of sin and death. (Romans 8: 1, 2)
Jesus went on to say to her. “Go. You should never sin from now on. ” (Verse 11) The important thing is not the past. What is important is the present and the future. Jesus did not say, “Don’t worry, live as usual.” Instead, he said, “Never sin from now on.”
Jesus never took lightly of sin. He was invited to repent and be sanctified to live. He was told to make a new departure. We must not waste grace. Jesus encourages us to use the fact of forgiveness of sins as the starting point for our new life.
Jesus gave this woman a challenge. “Never sin now.” Many would have thought she would return to life as before. But Jesus trusted her. And he was forced to make a choice. Will you return to your original life or will you take a new path with Jesus? “You have certainly sinned, but life is not over yet. Don’t sin anymore. Prove that you will be better, and the end of life will be revealed. “
This story is incomplete. What kind of steps did this woman take? I think and I hope she lived a life that was as innocent as possible. We are the same. Our life is still incomplete and not over. We don’t know what will happen in the future. It has great potential, and on the contrary, there is a risk of falling into sin. Jesus is more interested in the future than in our past.
God is giving each of us a challenge as to what kind of life we will lead. Will you continue to live the same way as before, or will you take a new step with God? Life is incomplete until we stand before God, and we don’t know what will happen. The first half of 2021 has ended and the second half has begun. Thank you for the forgiveness of our sins, and do not waste the grace of salvation. From now on, let’s renew our feelings and make a new departure with God, with Jesus, with the Holy Spirit.
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I used to be a pastor in the metropolitan area for 10 years, but now I am a pastor at a local Christian church. I also run a travel agency and a farm. I myself have been empowered by various words, and I would like to convey hopeful words.
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