Thursday, February 21, 2013

Thought of the Day !!

At dawn [Jesus] appeared again in the temple courts, where all the people gathered around him, and he sat down to teach them. The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the group and said to Jesus, "Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?" 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. 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." Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground.

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. Jesus straightened up and asked her, "Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?"

"No one, sir," she said. "Then neither do I condemn you," Jesus declared. "Go now and leave your life of sin."
                                                                                             John 8:2-11 (TNIV)

The biblical word for cheating on one's wife or husband is adultery.  And it's frowned on heavily by God.  As a matter of fact, the prohibition of it made it into the Ten Commandments (number 7).  The reason God abhors it so much is that it ruins the relationship between a man and a woman.  And God's greatest desire is for us to have relationships…relationships with each other and with Him.  

In our Scripture reading the Pharisees bring a woman who has been caught in the act of adultery to Jesus and ask him point blank…what do you say that we should do with her?  On one hand, the Law of Moses says to stone her.  On the other hand, Roman law prevented this kind of punishment.  

And then there's the fact that if he said, "Let her go", the Pharisees could say that he didn't adhere to Jewish Law.  Of course if he said to stone her, he would go against everything he taught.

What was he to do?  He simply wrote in the dirt (maybe the question – where's the man).  And when pressed, he gave an answer that's like one of those great lines from an old movie.  One that will last forever in people's memories…kind of like Frankly my dear Scarlet…or I don't think we're in Kansas anymore Toto…or of all the gin joints in all the….  He said, "He that is without sin cast the first stone."  And that line has been repeated over and over through the centuries.

Wow!  What could they do?  Uhhhh Ummm!  Can you imagine them looking at each other.  "You do it.  No, you do it."  Then one by one, beginning with the oldest (probably because they were the wisest) they dropped their deadly weapons and slunk away.  Even they weren't hypocritical enough to claim that any of them were without sin.  

When all the Pharisees were gone, Jesus asked the woman, "Where are your accusers?  Didn't even one of them condemn you?"  "No", she replied.  And then we hear those wonderful words of grace, "Neither do I.  Go and sin no more."

The original Greek means that Jesus deferred judgment.  He didn't say to her, "Forget it.  It's no big deal."  What he meant was: "I am not going to pass judgment on you now.  Go out and live a different life and do what you can to become a different person."

In a round about way, isn't that what he's told you before?  I know I've heard those words before.  He says to us, I don't condemn you.  Instead, I forgive you.  Now, I want you to change and try to become the person you're meant to be.  At that's up to us. 

In the love of Christ,


Post a Comment

<< Home