It was early in the morning, likely the day after the Jewish feast of Tabernacles, that the paths of two people were about to cross.
The Jewish religious leaders arrested a woman for adultery and brought her before the Lord, as he taught in the temple precincts. Her life was about to be forever changed.
The Jewish leaders were constantly after the Lord to find some fault with him or his teaching.
This occasion was no exception as they somehow caught the woman in the very act.
They gave no explanation as to where or whom the other person was.
They just brought the woman into the midst of the gathering of people where the Lord was teaching and proceeded to question the Lord.
When we come to the eighth chapter of John, we find the Lord spending the night on the Mount of Olives.
It is likely that he was using the time there to commune with his father in prayer about the events of the next day.
So, when the morning came, he came into the Temple courts, prepared to teach the people that were gathered around.
The Jewish leaders never let up on the Lord in their attempts to trap him and this was no exception.
The Lord knew their plan of attack was to trap him in his words somehow.
Jewish leaders asked the Lord what he would say concerning the woman taken in adultery, reminding him of the requirements of the Law of Moses. In John, chapter one, verse 17, we find the phrase that the headline of this article is taken from.
It reads: “For the law (Ten Commandments) was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.”
Their attack was designed to back the Lord into a legal corner, out of which they thought he could not get out.
The Jewish leaders proceeded to question the Lord regarding the law’s requirement for the woman’s sin and demanded what the Lord thought of the matter.
The Bible tells us the Lord Jesus did not come to bring judgment on the world, but rather to suffer and die for our sins.
He provided a way for our sins to be forgiven so we could be righteously cleared of all guilt.
After the leaders asked their question, the Lord stooped down, wrote on the ground and said nothing.
The leaders pressed the Lord to give them an answer, so he stood up and said: “He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.”
Then, the Lord stooped down and wrote on the ground some more. Slowly, beginning from the oldest to the last, the accusers went out.
The Lord was left alone with the woman standing in the midst. The Lord then stood up and asked the woman: “Where are your accusers? Has no man condemned you?” The woman said: “No man, Lord.”
The Lord, in his amazing grace said, Neither do I condemn you: go, and sin no more.”
The woman deserved the penalty of her sin, but she received forgiveness that morning directly from the Lord himself.
He was the only one qualified to cast a stone, but his abounding grace was received instead by this woman.
She would never be the same after this encounter with the one who would eventually die for the sins of the world.
“For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.” (John 1:17).
Have you experienced the grace of God in your life, knowing the forgiveness of sins through trusting the Lord Jesus who died for your sins?
John Eggers is an elder in the assembly that meets in Westsyde Gospel Hall in Kamloops. KTW welcomes submissions to its Faith page. Columns should be between 600 and 800 words in length and include a headshot of the author, along with a short bio. Send it via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.