Some in her community just ran her reputation through the mud. They used her as a pawn. They wanted her dead just to carry out their evil deeds. Yet when it was all over, she stood there all alone, and no doubt scared and with a load of guilt and shame. And then Jesus! And then Jesus!
We are in John chapter 8 verses 1-11.
Now early in the morning Jesus came again into the temple, and all the people came to Him; and He sat down and taught them. Then the scribes and Pharisees brought to Him a woman caught in adultery. And when they had set her in the midst, they said to Him, “Teacher, this woman was caught in adultery, in the very act. Now Moses, in the law, commanded us that such should be stoned. But what do you say?” This they said, testing Him, that they might have something of which to accuse Him. But Jesus stooped down and wrote on the ground with His finger, as though He did not hear.
So when they continued asking Him, He raised Himself up and said to them, “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.” And again He stooped down and wrote on the ground. Then those who heard it, being convicted by their conscience, went out one by one, beginning with the oldest even to the last. And Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. When Jesus had raised Himself up and saw no one but the woman, He said to her, “Woman, where are those accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you?” She said, “No one, Lord.” And then Jesus said to her, “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.”
What an unthinkable situation this lady was in! She was caught in the very act of adultery! Perhaps paraded through town by her accusers and worse yet, she knew her life would end in a day or two under a pile of stones. The law called for anyone committing adultery to be stoned to death. Her life would end in disgrace and under a pile of stones. What a load of guilt and shame she must have borne. What fear and trembling must have run through her mind. The long and painful death of stoning awaited her.
Sure! She brought the situation upon herself! Sin crept into her life. Sin stuck its foot in the door – knowingly or unknowingly! But once sin creeps in it is so hard to turn it away! No wonder the Bible say avoid the very appearance of evil. What might have started out so innocently for this woman, led to this terrible moment, this terrible situation? All of this could have been avoided, but sin is so deceitful and charming. But that isn’t an excuse for sin, but rather a warning to always be aware. Put on the full armor of God that you may be able to stand in the evil day and having done all to stand, stand! Be ever vigilant! Be ever on your guard for sin is sitting at your door.
But it was too late for this woman. The sin was committed! The crime was found out, and punishment waited! Justice was swift! There were no long delays in the courts. There were no appeals. No second chances. No do overs! Her life would soon be done. Disgrace and shame would be the epitaph of her life. And then Jesus! And then Jesus, after writing something on the ground for a second time, stood up and looked the woman in the eyes and asked, woman, where are those accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you? She said, “No one, Lord.” And then Jesus said to her, “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.”
Oh maybe you have done things that later brought you guilt and shame; things that have destroyed your relationships and maybe even things that brought disgrace to the name of your Lord and savior. Things the devil, the accuser of the brethren, is not soon to let you forget! But the Bibles says,” now there is no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus!” The price of sin has been paid by the blood of Jesus upon the cross of Calvary. It’s as if Jesus is looking you in the eyes and saying to you, neither do I condemn you, go and sin no more.
It is foolishness to bet on an instant replay, and even more foolishness to live under a load of guilt and shame!