John 8:1–11 ‘Neither do I condemn you…’ (v11)

It’s obviously a trap. A woman has been caught in the act of adultery, but interestingly, the man concerned has not also been brought forward for punishment!

At any rate, it’s a clear indication that the leaders of the Jewish community want to force Jesus’ hand in a difficult situation, as they bring the woman to Him.

The Law of Moses says she should be stoned (v5). What will Jesus say? Will he disagree with the Law?

He takes His time in answering. Is He praying? He writes on the ground. Then He comes out with a wonderful challenge.

If anyone present has never sinned, they can throw the first stone (v7). The older ones slink away first (v9).

They know they haven’t led completely clean lives. In the end, the only person left is the woman.

Jesus tells her He is not condemning her, although He adds an interesting proviso: she has to live differently (v11).

When we come to Christ, we find His grace and mercy, His love and kindness. He forgives our sins. He doesn’t condemn.

But we can’t live a life pleasing to God without God’s power to do so. Jesus is willing to give that to us – the ‘living water’ of John 7:38.

We can’t live wholeheartedly for God while looking longingly back to our old lives that may have been less than squeaky clean – or trying to compromise!

Sometimes we have to make difficult decisions to live full-out for God and walk in the path He has prepared for us: a path of destiny. With Jesus, there is no condemnation. But we have to ‘live differently’.


A Prayer To Make:
‘Lord, thank You that in Jesus there is no condemnation. You forgive me, and set me free to be Your friend and follower. Help me to please You today. Amen.’

An Action To Take:
Do you feel condemned by God, or forgiven? Take some time to think about that today.

Scripture To Consider:
2 Sam. 12:1–13; Ps. 51:1–19; John 3:1–21; Rom. 8:1–17

Micha Jazz is Director of Resources at Waverley Abbey, UK.