Saturday, December 19

Drop my rocks

Scripture: John 7-8

John 8:7 They kept demanding an answer, so he stood up again and said, “All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!”

John 8:10–11 Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, “Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?” 

11 “No, Lord,” she said. 

And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.”

Observation

In this beautiful story, a woman caught in adultery is dumped at Jesus’ feet and the religious leaders ask Jesus if they should obey Moses’ law and stone her.  Jesus famously answers: “Let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone.”  And one by one, they left.  Alone with the woman, Jesus asked if anyone condemned her.  “No one,” she said.  “Neither do I.  Go and sin no more.” 

Jesus didn’t condemn her (He was the one person there without sin who could have cast a stone)—He forgave her.  But He also didn’t approve of her adultery—He called it sin and insisted she stop.  

Jesus was full of grace and truth.  (See John 1:14). 

Jesus called out sin; He was clear about right and wrong.  And He offered mercy, grace and forgiveness rather than condemnation.  

Application

When Jesus told us not to judge (see Matthew 7:1-5), He didn’t mean that we don’t discern right from wrong, good from evil.  We must do that.  He meant that we don’t condemn people, but offer them grace instead.  We drop our rocks—the desire to punish—and forgive instead.

This is hard to do!  When I’m convinced that someone is wrong, I want to condemn them, punish them, reject them, write them off.  Of course, I don’t want others to do this with me—I want them to show me grace!.  Oh, how I need to become more like Jesus, full of grace and truth, able to discern sin but drop my rocks and offer grace instead of condemnation and punishment!  Help me Lord!  

And it’s never been more needed than now, when everyone seems to be on edge or, as I’ve said earlier, “baptized in gas.” 

Today, I want to be gracious with others who are struggling.  Drop my rocks.

Prayer: Lord, you know how prone to judgment I am.  Forgive me, and help me follow Your beautiful example in this story, loving others with both truth and grace.