Thursday, August 31, 2017

Timeless Truths: Dropping the Stone

but Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. At dawn he appeared again in the temple courts, where all the people gathered around him, and he sat down to teach them. 
The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the group and said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?” 
They were using this question as a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing him. But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger. 
When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground. 
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. Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” 
“No one, sir,” she said. “Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.”
John 8:1-11
Themes reappear throughout the Bible. Most are pretty commonplace, like 

  • Communion—eating/drinking together.
  • Light is a common theme in John. Jesus declares himself as “the Light of the World” in John Chapter 7.
  • Eternal life and its benefits is another theme in John.

Thus we read in a passage like John 3:18, "Whoever believes in Him [that is, Jesus] is not condemned.  But whoever does not believe, stands condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son."  Here, it is eternal death that begins in this life as well.  But now compare 5:24, "Whoever hears My word and believes Him who sent Me has eternal life and will not be condemned.  He has crossed over [past tense, already in this life], he has crossed over from death into life."  Compare similar sentiments in John 3:36, 9:39 and 12:31.  Yet a future hope is not entirely absent.  There are references to the coming resurrection of both the just and the unjust (see especially chapter 5:25-29). 

John 7:53-8:11 is out of sequence—probably—in the story of the Festival of Booths. However, this story is by John and is important.

According to Law, the people had every right to use the stone on the adulteress. Throwing stones represented the fulfillment of God’s Law.
The stone represents darkness illuminated by the Light of Christ. The Law is not just “the law.”

Prior to Christ, the stone was part of the light of the Law. 
The Light of Christ shows the need to DROP THE STONE and rid ourselves of the old, feeble light. 
Only then can we live in the illuminating Light of Christ. In other words, “live by the Light.”

During the Festival of Booths, priests burned their oil-soaked undergarments each night to represent the light from the Pillar of Fire in the desert.
  • We don’t need a representation of light. 
  • Christ’s light came that we would have life. (John 1)
  • We have access to the Light!

Special thanks to Pastor John Parrish for the primary teachings used in this post. You can read more in his teachings in his blog:

Next Timeless Truth: Don't Listen to the Stranger

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