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Sunday, October 9, 2011

Sunday October 9, John 8.1-11

John 8.1-11

1while Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. 2Early in the morning he came again to the temple. All the people came to him and he sat down and began to teach them. 3The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery; and making her stand before all of them, 4they said to him, ‘Teacher, this woman was caught in the very act of committing adultery. 5Now in the law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?’ 6They said this to test him, so that they might have some charge to bring against him. Jesus bent down and wrote with his finger on the ground. 7When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, ‘Let anyone among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.’ 8And once again he bent down and wrote on the ground. 9When they heard it, they went away, one by one, beginning with the elders; and Jesus was left alone with the woman standing before him. 10Jesus straightened up and said to her, ‘Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?’ 11She said, ‘No one, sir.’ And Jesus said, ‘Neither do I condemn you. Go your way, and from now on do not sin again.’


Thoughts:  One of my all time favorite stories in the Gospels!  Why?  I love it that it is the older ones who drop their stones first and walk away.  Lastly it is the young hot heads who also realize their own sin and walk away.  As we get older I think we begin to realize the various shades of gray.  The compromises we have made, the less than noble settling that has won day as discretion has gotten the better part of valor.   Some ancient records of this story have Jesus writing on the ground the particular sins of everyone who was there gathered.  Wouldn't that be something to see Jesus write on the ground about that particular transgression that I thought nobody knew about--but here's this Jesus writing it on the ground for all to see.  How quickly would you drop your rock?   And here is something quite extraordinary.  Did you realize that Jesus never makes the woman confess her sin or even say that she was sorry.  He simply proclaims that he as well will not condemn her.  Go and sin no more he tells her.   I often thought that would make a good dismissal from worship! 

Questions:  If Jesus were about to write your sins on the dirt which would you be most horrified to see?  Can you hear Jesus telling you; "Neither do I condemn you, go and sin no more!"  To leave those sins behind is to know forgiveness.

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