“If any one of you is WITHOUT sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her… At this, those who heard BEGAN TO GO AWAY ONE AT A TIME, the older ones first, until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there.” JOHN 8:7&9
Something dynamic just took place here that is often overlooked. The men who brought the adulterous woman to Jesus to convict her suddenly were SELF-AWARE of THEIR sin.
They were confronted by their sin, as was the woman in that moment. In their interaction with Christ THEIR SINS were opened, if not to the public at least to their conscience!
However, instead of joining this woman at the feet of Jesus they WALKED AWAY. They didn’t want to DEAL with their sin. They didn’t want to deal with the DIRT that was on them.
What’s beautiful is that the non-religious adulterous woman DIDN’T LEAVE. As Jesus knelt down to doodle in the ground and the Pharisees started to leave one-by-one, she COULD HAVE quietly slipped away as well.
When she was in the presence of God she received the GRACE that was being freely offered and allowed Jesus to CLEANSE and FORGIVE her sin that had dirtied up her life.
Sometimes we do not want to come to Jesus dirtied with sin. Sometimes it’s EASIER to just slip away quietly and not have to deal with the very thing that is dirtying up our life.
My sons Kaleb (5 years old) and Joshua (3 years old) were playing outside one day. Kaleb thought it would be funny to dump dirt on Joshua’s head. Joshua came crying to the front door and he looked up at me with dirt all over him. As his tears were making mud streaks down his face he said to me in his raspy-scratchy-husky little voice, “Boo Boo (his name for Kaleb) dumped dirt on me.”
I snapped at Kaleb and told him to never do that again, but then I looked at Josh (with dirt all over him) and my heart melted.
I brushed the dirt off his head and gave him a kiss. I remember tasting dirt but it didn’t matter because of my love for him. I took him inside and gave him a bath to make him fresh and clean again.
The next day they were outside and Kaleb did it again. I reprimanded him and embraced Joshua (again) and all his dirt.
As a father I did not reject my son. I only rejected the dirt that’s on my son. It is my love for him that continuously chooses to clean him up. It’s my love for him that spurs on such a deep commitment for care and cleansing.
It would break my heart if Joshua did not come to me OVER and OVER and OVER and OVER again to be cleaned up. I would always have a passion to rid him of the dirt that was on him.
God is the same way with us. Regardless if we are embarrassed, if we feel shame or guilt He so desires for us to come to Him and cleanse us from our wrong doing (no matter what it is).
Today, choose not to be like the Pharisees and walk away. Not letting the Lord cleanse you from the sin that dirties up your life.
However, learn something from the adulterous woman, in this sense – that once she was confronted with her sin, she DID NOT walk from Jesus but STAYED at His feet and RECEIVED forgiveness.
When we own up to our sin and allow ourselves to be transparent before the Lord it is at that point we can have the freedom we long for and we can walk clean again before our Maker.
Rick Bulman is the Senior Pastor at New Hope Foursquare Church in Bellingham, Washington. He is a normal guy (actually, depends on who you ask) who loves Jesus. His faith is real and he tries to live life as transparent as possible. Rick is married and has 4 amazing kids! To see all articles by Rick-Bulman Click Here!