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Our Weekly Devotional

Against the Wind

Friday, January 30, 2015 • Randy Kilgore • General
No one comes away from a meeting with Jesus unchanged...and that's good, because no one comes to God unless they're first changed by Jesus.

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 (for full context, read here.)

     How angry Jesus must have been when He saw this group of socially prominent religious men pushing a prostitute towards Him. How angry God must have been, watching them bully this woman in the hopes of silencing His Son. "Ah," they said to each other, "now we'll get Him. If He sides with us, the people will no longer follow Him; if He sides with the prostitute, then they'll know He's a fraud who dishonors God." So with a smirk on their faces as they prepared to silence Jesus, onward they marched.

     He could have screamed at them; or in rage, called down the angels to "rough 'em up a bit." He could also have asked the Father to make them go "poof." He had all that power, and more. If you've ever spent time in Sunday School or heard someone tell the best stories of Jesus, you know what happened next:

     He called their bluff, inviting anyone who had not sinned to stone the prostitute first.

     Just that fast He turned their own words on them, and the crowd of adult bullies skulked away.

     One might expect that after all this woman had just been through, Jesus might have sent her off without another word. But that would have consigned her to a bit role in the drama, useful in making a point but too tainted to for the Messiah's personal attention. It would also have left her trapped in her sin, not knowing she'd just been freed by the Savior.

     "Who is left to condemn you?" It's a rhetorical question, but it didn't have to be. Remember His words? "...anyone without sin...cast the first stone..."

     He could have cast that stone!

     Which makes what He did next even more remarkable: "Go, and sin no more," He told her. Jesus wasn't finished because Jesus never left anyone He met unchanged. The sins of the self-righteous crowd that dragged her there were rebuked by Jesus, but silence at this point might seem like her own sin was somehow unimportant. Like the skulking bullies, she had to change, too. Not because the Rule-Book said so and not because Jesus was just a goody-two-shoes. Jesus knew---knows---that any sin separates us from God until that sin is paid for by the judgment those men wanted...or by the grace His whole ministry was about to introduce to humans.

     That's Jesus. Always pressing against the winds of culture to form a shelter from the storm: Those we make for others and those we make for ourselves.

--Randy Kilgore

 

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