IF YOU ARE WITHOUT SIN – THEN GO AHEAD AND THROW THE FIRST STONE!
Even though these words were written two years ago, they speak loud and clear for today too! It is sad. It is sad that it has even come to what we have witnessed in the last months. So many stones being tossed. So many lines being drawn in the sand. Judgments. Lies. Deceit. Manipulation.
As I prepared for my Day 15 writing challenge – I asked the Lord, “Lord, what is happening in America? What is happening to your children? Oh Father, what have we done?”
The very first thought that came to mind as I unfolded His Word – “Do you remember the story of the adulterous women caught in sin?” So I turned the precious pages in God’s Word to John 8:1-11:
John 8:1-11 – Jesus returned to the Mount of Olives, but early the next morning he was back again at the Temple. A crowd soon gathered, and he sat down and taught them. As he was speaking, the teachers of religious law and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in the act of adultery. They put her in front of the crowd. “Teacher,” they said to Jesus, “this woman was caught in the act of adultery. The law of Moses says to stone her. What do you say?” They were trying to trap him into saying something they could use against him, but Jesus stooped down and wrote in the dust with his finger. They kept demanding an answer, so he stood up again and said, “All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!” Then he stooped down again and wrote in the dust. When the accusers heard this, they slipped away one by one, beginning with the oldest, until only Jesus was left in the middle of the crowd with the woman. Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, “Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?” “No, Lord,” she said. And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.” (NLT)
That is an interesting statement made by Jesus – “All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!”
Many times we are too quick to make a decision to throw stones at another. I have seen people come to the Lord and seen people stand up and clap and welcome a new believer into fellowship with them. BUT AS SOON as they falter just once in sin the first words out of their mouths is similar to this: “Oh look at __________. He says he gave his life to Jesus but look at him. I just knew it wasn’t real. Taking drugs again! He will never be anything else but a drug addict!”
MY DEAR SWEET FRIENDS! This breaks my heart! I have seen this happen time after time as a pastor’s wife hearing those words being spoken over and against a new believer.
People are crippled today in their walk with Jesus just by the identities that are thrown back upon them by other believers. There are books being sold by the millions on self-worth just because of these accusations and curses hurled at one another. It is as though we are targets and we spend our days running from these “words” being tossed at us such as stupid, worthless, liar, fat, ugly, sinner, thief. When will it end?
Religion does that to us. We like to cast stones at others just to take the eyes off of us and our sins. We put back the labels on people of who they once were – and rip off the identity of Christ. Then what happens? We become crippled and bent over from the weight of burdens that were meant for Jesus to carry for us. Stop throwing the stones and get alone with the Lord and ask Him to do a heart check on you. Help one another to remember who they are in Christ Jesus.
Oh Father, forgive us of our sins. Forgive us when we are too quick to cast the first stones and we forget about the skeletons in our own closets. Help us Lord to remember to love like Jesus. Help us to remember what is necessary when we do sin – for you have given us a path to walk on to repent and turn from our evil ways. Help us to remember words from this week about loving our brothers and sisters in Christ and not be speaking out evil against them in the dark and then claiming to walk in the light and that we live like Jesus. Forgive us, Lord. I ask this in Jesus Christ’s name, amen.
I would like to leave you today on our path at the Scripture right after John 8:1-11:
John 8:12 – Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, “I am the light of the word. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.” (NLT)
We are the light. We were entrusted with the light. Let us be the light that leads to life.
These words were first written after a church split. A split in a community. A split in families. And yet, these same words ring lour and clear for today. Heed the Word of God.
My Song: I had never heard this song before, but the words touched my heart today. We need to drop our hate stones and pick up the stone of love. God’s love. God’s love that is filled with mercy and with grace. The same stone that was given to us by Him. Let’s live for Him.