no condemnation

Caught in the very act.  Dragged out into the temple courtyard, in front of the crowd, to be accused and probably stoned.  That was the law.  She was alone.  Defenseless.  Her mind was probably racing, wondering how this whole scene could have been different – was there anything, any one who could save her now?

She couldn’t even look up.  She just stared at her feet.  The men’s voices were harsh and angry.  She braced herself for the hurling stones.

Instead, there were new questions from the men.  Questions directed at Someone else.  She wasn’t sure they were any more interested in His answers than hers, but she was thankful for the interruption.  Could she even dare to hope that this could all end some other way?

Before carrying out their heated judgment, the men seemed to want to know what this other Man, Jesus, thought they should do.  He didn’t answer them right away and stooped to write something in the dirt.  Their questions persisted, so He simply said, “let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone.”

There was suddenly an awkward silence and not-so-subtle shifting of feet all around her. And then, miraculously, one by one, the angry, determined men dropped their stones and walked away.  She was left alone with Jesus.  He spoke softly to her and asked her, “where are your accusers – is there any left?”  Somehow she found her voice and answered Him, “none, Lord.”  Already beginning to wonder if she was dreaming (with this unexpected turn of events), she heard the unthinkable.  With loving kindness, Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you.  Go and sin no more.”

I believe it was a moment of more than just words.  I believe their eyes met.  Maybe not before He said those words, but possibly after she heard His heart, she had the courage to look into His eyes and know He was her Savior.

She might not have known much about Him, but He had shown the power and authority to proclaim her free of condemnation.  She might not have realized it yet, but He would pay the penalty for her sin and set her free.

Do I believe she felt those words gave her license?  (“phiew, it’s ok, He understands why my life is the way it is, He gets it, He doesn’t condemn me, so it must be all right”) … Not for a second!  He clearly said to her, “go, and sin no more.”

Do I believe her encounter with Jesus was a game-changer in her life, the turning point after which she no longer wrestled with that sin?  It is entirely possible!  “We are more than conquerors through Him who loves us.”  (Romans 8:37)  Do I believe it is also possible that the “sin that so easily besets us” reared its ugly head again in her life?  Sadly, this is also possible.  Even as His redeemed children, we all still wrestle against our sinful flesh.

Do I believe if He encountered her again, entangled in the same sin, that He would say the same words to her?  Without a doubt, Yes!  I believe He would have pursued a meeting with her again, and again, and again, if necessary, to tell her that His payment for her sin never expires! 

This is our Savior, who reaches to us again, and again, and again to remind us that “there is therefore no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus!” (Romans 8:1)  The life He gives is eternal, the payment He made for our sin is once-for-ALL… not for some of our sin, not for most of our sin, but for ALL of our sin.  That’s why He died.  His sacrifice is the only one that could cover us – always and forever, AMEN!!

 Read more here! – John 8:1-11 – Romans 8

 Christ suffered for our sins once for all time.  He never sinned, but He died for sinners that He might bring us to God.  I Peter 3:18

no condemnation

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