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Jul 18th, 2022
By: Matthew Sink
The Gospel of John-Day 31

John 7:53-8:11 They went each to his own house, Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. Early in the morning he came again to the temple. All the people came to him, and he sat down and taught them. The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery, and placing her in the midst they said to him, “Teacher, this woman has been caught in the act of adultery. Now in the Law, Moses commanded us to stone such women. So what do you say?” This they said to test him, that they might have some charge to bring against him. Jesus bent down and wrote with his finger on the ground. And as they continued to ask him, he stood up and said to them, “Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her.” And once more he bent down and wrote on the ground. But when they heard it, they went away one by one, beginning with the older ones, and Jesus was left alone with the woman standing before him. Jesus stood up and said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you; go, and from now on sin no more.”

From the very beginning, this scene was between Jesus and the religious leaders. The woman, caught in the act of adultery, was nothing more than a backdrop. It was obvious. After all, adultery takes two, and they only brought one. Justice for the crime was never on these men’s minds. They wanted to entrap Jesus. That’s it. The woman was collateral of war.

If you think about it, that’s true of all of us. All around us, a cosmic war rages every day. We can’t see it, of course, but it’s there – angels and demons. It’s enough to make you shudder if you try to envision it. Adam and Eve were caught in the middle – collateral of war – Satan attacked them to “hurt” God. No wonder Jesus wept over Jerusalem ... and at Lazarus’ tomb ... and undoubtedly countless other times as he interacted with the brokenness caused by sin. This was the reason He came to the world – to bring hope and healing to the broken.

Now, this group repeated the scene from Eden. They were hurting this woman to hurt God. The irony: they were all in the same boat as her – broken and hurting from sin; very much in need of Grace. How Jesus’ heart must have hurt to watch this play out. And of course, His response was perfect: Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her. Maybe He listed their sins in the dirt after He said this. In any event, these men got the message. Yes, the Law condemned her. That was never in question. Jesus is offering something new: LIFE. PEACE. RESTORATION.

As we navigate this day, let’s be careful to remember that we are part of a bigger story – a spiraling epic that began long before Eden and will end when the Enemy is locked away once and for all. In the meantime, let’s care for one another on this war-torn earth. We are surrounded by people suffering from sin, but we know where to find help. After all, it’s the same place we turned for forgiveness from our own sins.