Some say they don’t want to read the Bible because it has stories of wrath, war, and scandal. Yet, we listen to the media overturn lives repeatedly. Scandal sells.
The Bible is filled with stories of scandal. First century people weren’t any different than any of us.
Think of the story of the redeemed adulteress in the gospel of John (8:1-11). Publicly exposed for her sin by the pious, the Pharisees dragged the frightened woman to the temple steps. Barefoot and disheveled, she is thrown into the dark gaze of her enemies and sees One whose eyes look like God’s.
The accusers say to Jesus, “The Law of Moses says this woman must be stoned to death. What do you say?” Trying to trap Him while judging the scarlet letter lady. If He said she could go free He would be the lawbreaker Messiah.
No debate. Jesus kneels low to scribble. A hush comes over the crowd while the holy finger writes in the dust of the earth.
What did He write? Their names? Their sins? Ours?
“Anyone who has never sinned, throw the first stone.” . . . says the One who is qualified.
Eyes look down at the ground where they drop the unthrown blood stone. They leave one by one, first the older men, then the others.
He bends to write once again.
“Woman, where are your accusers? Has no one judged you guilty?” Jesus asks.
She answered, “No one.”
Compassion and Righteousness stands before her seeing her as she could be, not as she was. “I also don’t judge you guilty. Go your way, and sin no more.”
I wonder what became of the recipient of redemption after verse 11?
We’re on both sides of the line. Like the accusers, we have held a pocketful of stones waiting for someone to get “caught in the act.” Like her, we have sinned and Jesus stood up for us.
On a cross.
She expected to be shamed to death, instead she was commissioned to live a new life.
When has the Lord stood up for you when others wanted to throw stones?
Redemption . . . the Easter word. One definition is to release on receipt of ransom.
How can I repay the Lord for all His goodness to me? I will lift up the cup of salvation and call on the name of the Lord. Psalm 116:12,13