Sermon notes 👇
…these religious leaders are trying to trap Jesus, and they are doing so at the expense of the woman involved.
They don’t care one bit about her or the Old Testament Law. They only care about their power and influence, and the threat to those things that is Jesus.
The double-standards around women and sexuality are on full display. The man involved in this supposed act of adultery is not present - he’s been given a free pass.
But the religious leaders parade her out expecting Jesus to have to fall in line with them - OR - to oppose them in such a way that there is a reason to point out his opposition to the Old Testament.
Instead, Jesus reminds them of the Old Testament practice that the original accusers of someone caught in this sort of act - the original accusers who actually have enough verified witnesses to prove the transgression - they are the ones who should be throwing the first stones.
And in doing this, Jesus lays bare their own wicked hearts. They too carry the weight of sin. They too are thirsty for something better. So they all leave, and Jesus tells the woman to go and leave her sin behind
What’s on full display here is that the religious leaders in Jerusalem did not have hearts and minds overflowing with grace and mercy and forgiveness.
If drinking the water that Jesus provides turns you into someone that rivers of living water flow out of, then these leaders had rivers of death flowing from them.
When we come to Jesus - with our sins and shortcomings laid bare - what we get is grace and mercy and forgiveness and a new start, not condemnation and death.
The Lord’s prayer that we have been praying together as a community says this - “and forgive us our debts - as we also have forgiven our debtors.”
The invitation into the kingdom of God is an invitation into a kingdom of forgiveness, not a kingdom of condemnation…