Do you ever find yourself doing things you know you shouldn’t, but you do them anyway? I do and the Lord spoke to me about it through His Word. He had me camped out in the book of John 8:1-11 on Sunday. It is a very familiar story to those of you who have grown up in the church or been a believer for any length of time. It is the story of the woman caught in adultery who was brought before Jesus by the Pharisees in an attempt stone her and trap Him. These 11 verses are packed with many golden nuggets for us glean.
Today I want to focus on verses 1-6. In these verses we see the Pharisees dragging this woman, who goes unnamed, before the people in the temple and Jesus. Jesus was at the temple courts teaching the people. They were gathered around Him because they wanted to learn from Him. They were interested in what He had to say. However, the Pharisees interrupted the teaching to parade this woman before the crowd and announce her sin to everyone around. I don’t know about you, but I would rather die than have someone drag me before the people gathered in my church and announce my sin to them. Yet, this woman had no choice. Everything was out there for the whole world to see and judge. The law was very clear on how to deal with an adulterous woman. The people were to stone her to death.
How would they respond? How would you respond? Would you take a step back from her because of what you learned about her? Would you pull your children closer to you and create some distance between her and them?
Jesus knew her heart and He knew the heart of those around Him. He didn’t cast judgment on them anymore than He did her. He gave them an opportunity to realize their own sin without announcing it before the crowd. He simply replied, “If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her” [verse 7]. Don’t you know it sounded like popcorn, all of those rocks dropping, first one or two at a time and then the multitude at once. Verse 9 tells us the older ones were the first to leave. I am assuming wisdom comes with age and they figured out really quickly their dirty laundry wasn’t any whiter than hers.
Don’t forget, these people, the ones with the rocks in their hands, they were previous gathered around Jesus in the temple courts to hear His message. They were seekers of truth. Friends, how many of us are that fickle when someone comes into the church that is curious about the whole God thing but has a past that would make paint curl? Or maybe it is someone who isn’t “dressed appropriate” or doesn’t use “appropriate language” all the time. Do you reach out to them and love them or do you bend down and pick up your rock. A wise man once said a man who lives in glass houses should never throw rocks.
With every person you meet, in church and outside of church, you have an opportunity to bless them or curse them….drop your rock or throw it. What will you do with your rock today?