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When the woman who was caught in adultery was brought to Jesus, He addressed her situation on three distinct levels, helping her overcome three things she confronted. The sacrifice of Christ on the cross and His advocacy on our behalf at the right hand of the Father still speaks to those three things today.
The three things are 1. Dealing with words of accusation uttered from the lips of men with the intention of ruining the life of the person. 2. Making the person know that God is not condemning you for your mistakes. 3. Go and sin no more.
As the story goes, this woman was supposedly caught in the act and dragged to Jesus. Their intent wasn’t really obedience to the law of God but how they could make Jesus say something they could now legitimately use against Him.
John 8: 3-6
3 And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst,
4 They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act. 5 Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou? 6 This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him.
Remember they asked “Now Moses in the law commanded us…..but what sayest thou?”
The idea here being the law came by Moses but grace and truth by Jesus. The words of Christ was the answer of grace to that situation.
The first thing Jesus did was to fight off the accusers. His finished work on the cross deals squarely with Satan’s major weapon which is words of accusation from the lips of men against us. He has put Himself in a position on our behalf where no weapon formed or fashioned against us shall prosper. What is the weapon Isaiah was referring to here? “Every tongue that rises against us….” satan is the accuser of the brethren, that’s his major work to raise tongues on the earth to condemn person, ministry, organization or church with the intent of shutting them down.
Christ’s answer is this Romans 8:31-34
31 What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? 32 He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? 33 Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth. 34 Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.
How many individuals, ministries, churches, businesses etc have suffered great damage because they didn’t know how to fight back when satan raised tongues to speak falsely against them.
Isaiah 50:8-9 (KJV)
8 He is near that justifieth me; who will contend with me? let us stand together: who is mine adversary? let him come near to me.
9 Behold, the Lord God will help me; who is he that shall condemn me? lo, they all shall wax old as a garment; the moth shall eat them up.
Jesus fought the accusers, learn to condemn in prayer every tongue that rises against you. Paul’s ministry was attacked this way out of envy
Acts 13:45 “But when the Jews saw the multitudes, they were filled with envy, and spake against those things which were spoken by Paul, contradicting and blaspheming.”
The second thing Jesus dealt with was the feeling that God has sentenced me to some form of punishment for my mistake. To feel condemned is to believe there will be some external punishment from heaven as regards this. So one cannot fight back the maneuvers of satan in one’s environment thinking the negative circumstance is God sent as punishment for my mistake and transgression.
10 When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee? 11 She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee:
God corrects us but He doesn’t condemn us. If you do wrong He will correct you from within and expect you judge that thing with your words as not being part of you and fight the good fight of faith mortifying that thing from your life.
Lastly, He said “Go and sin no more” Jesus acknowledged her act was wrong and He corrected it. But in this statement we find something. He said “Go and sin no more”. These were not just mere words of expressing His intent for her in the same way “arise take up your bed and walk” were not just statements of intent.
Those words carried the power to stop her from engaging in adulterous acts as “arise take up your bed and walk” transferred healing into the man’s body. Christ’s words to a man with a withered hand “stretch forth your hand” cured him of his ailment, “go and sin no more” removed that practice from her life. As Jesus spoke, He released grace to transform the life of that woman from that moment.
The message of grace and truth wasn’t just about not condemning a person for their mistakes, but that what the law couldn’t do (which was to issue commandments without any power to fulfill) grace has now entered with the power of an endless life. The Scribes and Pharisees were ministers of the law but when grace and truth came it was said of Him,
Mark 1:22 And they were astonished at his doctrine: for he taught them as one that had authority, and not as the scribes.
Luke 4:32 And they were astonished at his doctrine: for his word was with power.
Jesus wasn’t just explaining, He was empowering and He is still doing the same today. Grace is not just about no longer being under condemnation, but it’s also about living the “In-Christed” life in which life and immortality are made manifest in us.
It is about understanding how to live the new life we have received from God. It’s not through power and might but by the Spirit and the Spirit can never produce a life which is inferior to that which power and might achieved.
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