Bible reading plan Bible reading plan

Love! Don't Judge

14 May 2021

This week’s reading is full of people coming against Jesus, accusing Him of being demon-possessed and looking for ways to arrest Him. The religious leaders of the day set up one particular encounter in order to trap Him so that they could arrest Him. In John 8, we find Jesus teaching on the Mount of Olives where He is interrupted by the Pharisees who drag a woman who was caught in adultery before the crowd.

These religious leaders explain the situation and remind Him that according to the law she should be stoned. But rather than stoning her, they ask Jesus what he says. Instead of answering them Jesus ignores them and bends down to write in the dust. I can only imagine what these, men who were held in high regard, must have been thinking. They can’t have been used to people ignoring them and they demand an answer from Jesus.

Jesus stands up and doesn’t address the sin that the woman was guilty of. Instead, He says in John 8:7 “Alright, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone.” After saying this he goes back to writing in the dust.

One by one the accusers slowly begin to disappear because they all realised that every single one of them had sinned. There was nobody there who could cast the first stone, nobody but Jesus. But rather than judge her we see him do this instead, “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 8:10-11)

Sometimes Christians can be extremely judgemental. We see it all the time especially when a person or group of people are doing something contrary to the Biblical values that we live by. I have heard it said that people often know more about what Christians are against than what they are for. 

This passage with the woman caught in adultery shows us that Jesus, who could judge, did not judge her. And if Jesus didn’t condemn people, then we have absolutely no right to judge them either. Just like those who accused the woman we have all sinned and not a single one of us can throw a single stone.

So, instead of wasting time condemning others and their actions we should be letting them know about the One we truly stand for, Jesus! For people stuck in darkness, it is not judgement, an angry Facebook rant or cruel signs that will bring them to God. It is showing compassion, loving them and sharing the gospel message with them that will have an everlasting impact on them.

Next time you are tempted to judge someone for doing something you don’t agree with let them see the One you stand for instead. Ask yourself “How can I show them God’s love in this situation?”

Photo of Kenny MacKay

Kenny MacKay

Youth Minister & Outreach Coordinator
GoChurch Bradford