John 8. Forum Discussion

Mercy and compassion

As you read the beginning of chapter 9 about the woman that committed adultery and how Jesus had compassion on her, think about how our light shines brightest in the darkness. Jesus did not distance Himself from the world, or from those that are trapped in sin. Instead, He showed them compassion, talked to them, and encouraged them to sin no more.

There were plenty of people that were judging this woman and ready to stone her, but not Jesus. He said to the angry crowds, “He who is without sin among you, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.” Nobody threw a stone, because they all had sinned.

Jesus asks the woman, “Where are they? Did no one condemn you?” She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said, “I do not condemn you, either. Go. From now on sin no more.” – John 8:10-11 

It’s interesting that the very next section in chapter 8 is entitled, “Jesus is the Light of the World.” There are so many people with no authority who want to judge people and condemn them. And here is Jesus, the One who has ALL the authority, and He forgives her.

Mathew 28:18 says, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.”

We all know how good it feels to be forgiven and we can all learn from Jesus’ example to forgive, rather than to condemn. It comes down to justice and mercy. We all want mercy when we are talking about our sins. But do we show the same type of mercy that Jesus displayed when we are talking about the sins of others?

Mathew 6:15 states, “But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.” So we have everything to gain by forgiving others, and everything to lose by condemning them.

The Pharisees continue to test Jesus and rally support to kill Him while Jesus continues to do the will of His Father and to testify about all that the Father taught Him. He says to the Pharisees in verse 24, “Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for unless you believe that I am He, you will die in your sins.”

He gives God all the glory and says, “I do nothing on My own initiative, but I speak these things as the Father taught Me.” His humility and love for the Father convinced many people that day to believe in Him as John writes, “As He spoke these things, many came to believe in Him.” – John 8:30

So what does this mean to us and what actions can we take based on what we have just read?

We should try to not judge people. Instead, we can work at showing them compassion. As Jesus showed us, this will have a big impact on those that we meet and help bring people to Christ.

Finally, let’s look at the words Jesus spoke in Mathew 5:16:

Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.”

Comments

Virtual Bible Study

Do you have any thoughts or comments that you would like to share relative to today's lesson?

Reply
John

Jesus didn't just say, "Don't worry about it" though. He forgave her and then told her to sin no more. I think that's the message. We are forgiven through Jesus' blood, but we are not to continue in our sin. Repent means to turn away. We need to change our sinful behavior to stay in God's graces.

Reply
Rick

It's important to show mercy and not judgement, because the way that we treat others with respect to mercy and judgment is the way we will be treated by God. At least that's how I interpret the scripture.

Reply
John

Forgiveness is such a powerful thing. I remember carrying around anger for many years and then one day being able to forgive this person. I felt so much better, and I was obeying God's commands. Ever since then, I have worked at being quick to forgive and slow to anger.

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