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Woman Caught in Adultery, Part 2 – Exposed - Daily Treasure - April 5

  • 2022 Apr 05

Woman Caught in Adultery, Part 2 – Exposed

Sharon W. Betters

TODAY’S TREASURE

O LORD, the hope of Israel, all who forsake You shall be ashamed. “Those who depart from Me shall be written in the earth, because they have forsaken the LORD, the fountain of living waters” (Jeremiah 17:13, NKJV).

Before we watch Jesus' response to this exposed woman, it seems important for us to take some more time to consider our own hearts. This story of the adulterous woman gives us an opportunity to reflect on how we might have responded if we were in the crowd.

Perhaps you suspected this woman of breaking God’s commandments. You whisper to those around you that she deserves everything she gets. You immediately condemn her, and judgment crying out for justice rises up. You find the biggest stone you can hold.

  • You have no sympathy for her. No mercy. You want her to pay for destroying your friend’s marriage or making life miserable for your daughter. You pick up a stone, ready to hurl it. Your response encourages others to pick up stones as well.
  • Or, you shudder as you review your own sins, perhaps adultery with this very woman, and you try to melt into the crowd, hoping to slip away unnoticed.
  • Perhaps you know you have sinned, but nothing like this woman! You join friends in picking up stones confident Jesus must bring down the justice of Moses’ Law.
  • Or, your heartaches, waiting to see if Jesus offers the mercy of which He so often speaks, longing to experience mercy for your own hidden sins.

The older men left first, perhaps seeing their names are written in the dirt, or maybe Jesus, the perfect Old Testament scholar, wrote:

O LORD, the hope of Israel, all who forsake You shall be ashamed. “Those who depart from Me shall be written in the earth, because they have forsaken the LORD, the fountain of living waters” (Jeremiah 17:13, NKJV).

And then Jesus started listing names of those in the crowd who rejected Him as Messiah. Remember, not long before this encounter, Jesus offered the woman at the well “living water”. Here, He reminds these Scribes and Pharisees that if He truly is the Messiah as He claims and the fountain of living waters, their rejection of Him will result in eternal condemnation.

While we do not witness Jesus writing our sins in the dirt, His Word clearly declares our sinfulness and how we need to respond to it. The Apostle Paul, who may have been one of the accusers, wrote: 

All have sinned and come short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23).

As we get closer to Easter, let those words sink in. Like it or not, and we don’t like it, we are sinners, and no matter how much we minimize our sin, we fall short of God’s glory. We are helpless to save ourselves, but God does not leave us without hope. 

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16).

Yes, we are hopelessly lost, incapable of paying the price sin requires. But Hosanna!

…by grace are you saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God (Ephesians 2:8).

LIFE-GIVING ENCOURAGEMENT

Each of these stories about the unnamed women of the resurrection builds toward the greatest moment in history. Each one demonstrates not only our need for a Savior but the resurrection power that comes from knowing Jesus. 

One of the sins God revealed to me in that “aha” moment I shared yesterday was my judgemental spirit. Vignettes of moments I made snap decisions, seeing the person through the grid of my own opinion of them rather than through the grid of my own sin, flashed before me. I ignored the Scriptures that admonish me to be slow to speak, quick to listen (James 1:9), or that one person’s story might seem right until you hear the other side (Proverbs 18:17). My own self-righteousness blinded me to the mercy with which God viewed His children.

Paul addresses our judgemental spirits in this scathing Scripture:

Therefore you have no excuse, every one of you who passes judgment, for, in that which you judge another, you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things (Romans 7:1).

Again, I wonder if Paul was one of the accusers who slunk away, with no viable response to Jesus’ invitation to anyone guiltless to throw the first stone. 

Let this woman’s redemption story stop you in your tracks and ask the Lord to shine His light into the secret crevices of your heart, to expose sin. It could be a sin you have made so comfortable that you don’t recognize it as sin anymore. Or, you are living a secret life, choosing unrighteousness over the righteousness of Jesus. Maybe your love for Jesus has grown cold; you take Him for granted and have forgotten the price He paid to give you salvation. Do you depend on your “good works” to save you as the Scribes and Pharisees did? You fill in the blank.

As we get nearer to Easter, spend time alone with Jesus. Ask Him to open your heart to where the “sin which so easily besets you” can be conquered by His love. And if you have never recognized your need for Jesus, accept His call to repentance today. If you don’t know what this means, please contact me or talk to a trusted friend whose relationship with Jesus shines. Let this Easter be the season you taste and see that the Lord is good!

Continue on your journey to Easter and read John 13, and imagine yourself traveling with Jesus. Ask the Lord to open your heart to the emotions His followers must have felt and write in your journal their impact on you.

PRAYER

Lord, I pray for the one person who believes her good works are enough to pay for her sins. Lord, may the story of this broken woman move her to repentance and to experience genuine forgiveness of sin through Your unconditional love.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Sharon W. Betters is a mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, pastor’s wife, and cofounder of MARKINC Ministries, where she is the Director of Resource Development. Sharon is the author of several books, including Treasures of EncouragementTreasures in Darkness, and co-author with Susan Hunt of Aging with Grace. She is the co-host of the Help & Hope podcast and writes Daily Treasure, an online devotional.

For more from Daily Treasure please visit MARKINC.ORG.



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