He Straightened Up

Jesus bent down and wrote with his finger on the ground. When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let anyone among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” And once again he bent down and wrote on the ground. When they heard it, they went away, one by one, beginning with the elders; and Jesus was left alone with the woman standing before him. -John 8:6-9 NRSV

Part two of this three act passage. The prosecution thought they had Jesus dead to rights. They had divine law on their side. How could Jesus refute Moses. This adulterous woman was certainly guilty and deserving of stoning. Jesus did not have a proverbial leg to stand on. Yet in a beautiful moment Jesus stood and everything changed.

This passage shames everyone who is thirsty for judgment. Jesus exposes each of us who would judge another human being. With the words "without sin" he tells each of us that the log in our own eye is the sin that disqualifies us from passing judgment. Christ removes all excuses and causes us to drop our judgmental stones.

Forgive me Lord. I have judged the ones that you love. Help me to offer mercy when tempted to judge.

... this devotion is part of an ongoing series on the Gospel of John.

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