“But Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. Now early in the morning He came again into the temple, and all the people came to Him; and He sat down and taught them. Then the scribes and Pharisees brought to Him a woman caught in adultery. And when they had set her in the midst, they said to Him, “Teacher, this woman was caught in adultery, in the very act. Now Moses, in the law, commanded us that such should be stoned. But what do You say?” This they said, testing Him, that they might have something of which to accuse Him. But Jesus stooped down and wrote on the ground with His finger, as though He did not hear. So when they continued asking Him, He raised Himself up and said to them, “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.” And again He stooped down and wrote on the ground. Then those who heard it, being convicted by their conscience, went out one by one, beginning with the oldest even to the last. And Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. When Jesus had raised Himself up and saw no one but the woman, He said to her, “Woman, where are those accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you?” She said, “No one, Lord.”And Jesus said to her, “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.” Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.” ” ~John 8:1-12 (NKJV)
I have always found this story to be…fascinating! What was Jesus writing in the sand? I’ve heard many thoughs on this; such as, the sins of each in the crowd, the name of the man with whom she was committing adultery, and the list could go on indefinitely. But the crux of this story is the grand scale of forgiveness for the great amount of sin & scarring upon her soul. And the greater stain of sin upon the souls of those who dragged her to Jesus
in order to accuse & condemn her. We each have sins and scars on our souls from those sins we have committed and have not sought forgiveness for. According to James it is irrelevant as to the size of the sin which we commit, little white lie or murder…we are equally guilty in God’s eyes. Jesus spoke about this in the segment of Not to Judge Others (Luke 6:37-42). We cannot see because we have so much stuck in our own eyes based upon the amount of sin we have committed. And yet we cannot see it in ourselves, but we can sure see it in others and then either we talk bad about that person to their faces or we start talking in gosiping circles.
Once Jesus convicted them, those that condemned the adulterous woman, they all just wandered away. “Where are those accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you?” She had an amazing change in her life, she was destined for some greatness in her own right, by God’s grace. When we each commit a sin, or some eggregious act toward another, and we are forgiven…a weight, a tremendous weight, is then taken from our shoulders. We undeerstand the the actions of the “adulterous woman.”
It is at that time we are able to understand the washing of Jesus’ feet with tears. We can understand the act, as well as, the potential for us to do such a thing if Jesus were in front of us right now! No matter who you are, or what sex you are, we are all at some point in time the adulterous woman who has sinned greatly against God & His commandments. And because of THAT alone, we are in need of God’s forgiveness & His grace. We are so sorrowful of our act(s) that we would, if we could, wash our Lord’s feet with our tears!
Stay vigilant! Stay vocal! Stay blessed!
MK Murphy, PhD, DD