About Jesus - Steve Sweetman
8:1 - 11
we need to note now is that from chapter 7, verse 53, to chapter 8 verse
11, has always had a question mark associated with it.
Many scholars believe that John did not write this section.
The first manuscript that this section appears in is about 600
years after the event would have taken place.
This section is not found in the most reliable texts that we have.
Some versions of our Bible do not include it in their version.
people suggest that an event like what we see in this section could have
taken place, or, maybe even did take place, so we should not be too
concerned about its inclusion into our Bibles.
say that the writing style of this section does not fit into the style of
John’s writings as seen in the rest of the book.
What we should realize is that nothing written in this section
contradicts any other portion of Scripture.
verse 1 we learn that
is interesting to me that John says that Jesus sat down and taught.
To me this suggests a relaxed atmosphere, or at least He preferred
a relaxed atmosphere. Another
thing to note that much of what Jesus taught was in dialogue format.
It was not Him standing and teaching while others listened.
He’d say something and then someone would ask a question.
Then He’d answer the question.
That is the best way for anyone to learn anything.
verses 3 and 4 we see that while Jesus was teaching, the Pharisees and the
teachers of the law tried to trap Jesus with a question in matters
pertaining to their law. This
time they happened to find a woman in the process of committing adultery.
Just how they found her is unknown.
Whatever the case, they told Jesus that the Law of Moses said that
this woman should be stoned because of her sin.
They were hoping that Jesus would say something that they could
accuse Him of and arrest Him. They
were hoping that He'd say something contrary to the Law of Moses.
only my guess, my speculation, but I think the Jewish leaders had set
Jesus up. We should know that
many of these men had adulterous sex with the prostitutes of
verse 5 the Jewish leaders reminded Jesus that the Law of Moses demanded
that this woman be stoned. They
asked Jesus what He thought should happen to her.
They obviously knew that Jesus was a man of compassion.
If He said don't stone her then they'd arrest Him immediately for
breaking the Law of Moses. Verse
6 confirms this to be true.
6 is one of those verses that we’ve often speculated about.
It says that Jesus bent down and wrote something on the ground.
What did He write? We
don’t know, but we can be certain it had something to do with this
situation, and probably something that pointed the finger at the Jewish
leader’s own sin.
7 says that the Jewish leaders "kept on questioning Him," as if
what He was writing was not a sufficient enough answer.
He, therefore, straightens up and says, "If anyone of you is
without sin, let him be the first one to throw a stone at her."
Then He stooped back to the ground and began to write again as
verse 8 says.
Jesus was writing names of certain sins to suggest one sin was not worse
than another. Maybe He was
writing names of women that these Jewish leaders committed adultery with.
Whatever the case, what He was writing supplemented what He said.
It is clear that none of these men were without sin.
verse 9 we note that all of the accusers left, starting with the oldest.
Why the older men left first is pure speculation.
Maybe they had committed more adultery than the younger men.
They certainly had more time to do just that.
verse 10 Jesus asked the prostitute who was left standing to condemn her. In
verse 11 she replied that no one was left to condemn her.
Then Jesus told her that He did not condemn her either, but, He did
not leave it at that. He told
her to leave her life of sin. In
other words, this prostitute was to repent.
Repent in Biblical terms means more than changing one's mind about
sin. It means leaving one's
sin. It means walking away
from a lifestyle of sin, something Evangelicals don't seem to think is
important these days. .
woman was not a religious woman. Jesus
tolerated sinners more
than He tolerated hypocritical religious people.
He did tell her to stop sinning, so He is not letting her off the
hook. Sin is sin no matter who
commits it, but, in condemning the sin, He did not condemn the woman.
We can do the same. We
should expect sinners to sin. We
should condemn the sin but not condemn the sinner. We should preach the
truth of Jesus, which includes the message of repentance. Without
repentance there is no genuine faith.
One must turn from serving self before he can affectively serve
Jesus. You cannot serve two
masters at once.
thing we should learn from this passage is how intelligent Jesus was.
Back in verse 5 the leaders of the Jews pointed out what the Law of
Moses stated concerning those caught in adultery.
The Law said to stone such a person, therefore, this lady should
have been stoned on the spot. The
Law of Moses also said that there must be two or three witnesses before
such a person could be stoned. This is where the intelligence of Jesus
comes in. By the time the
discussion was over, all of the witnesses had left the premise.
There were no witnesses to accuse this lady; therefore she could
not have been legally stoned. I
find this aspect to Jesus' character important for us to know. I believe
Jesus would have made a good lawyer, and in one real sense of the word, He
is our lawyer right now, representing us on a daily basis before God.
should realize that there were two main groups of Pharisees; one liberal
ones and conservative ones. The
liberal group, known as the Hillel group, believed you could divorce your
wife for any and every reason. The
other group known as the Shammai group was conservative and believed that
adultery was the only valid Scriptural reason to divorce your wife.
Liberals were more popular than the conservatives. Therefore, in
this crowd of Pharisees there were probably more liberals than
conservatives who would have been married a number of times.
They would have divorced their wives for the sole purpose of having
a new sex partner. This is why
Jesus told them that he who is without sin should cast the first stone.
The specific sin Jesus probably had in mind was their adultery.