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Daniel 13:41-62; John 8:1-11

From the Gospel of John, we hear this story of the Woman Found in Adultery, and this time, the woman is guilty as charged.  She has been dragged in front of Jesus as the educated community leaders want to "have some charge to bring against him."  A tool of the scribes and Pharisees, a condemned criminal on the equivalent of Death Row, she doesn't ask for forgiveness.  She couldn't expect forgiveness.  But Jesus quietly reminds those educated community leaders that each of them is imperfect -- perhaps guilty of hatred and anger, perhaps of other errors of judgment.  Giving a wonderful sign that they have truly heard what Jesus has said, they leave.  Further, anytime this story is used in teaching morality, it's pointed out that Jesus does not say her sin is OK.  He doesn't say she's forgiven.  He says "Neither do I condemn you."  He tells her to leave, like her accusers, and to amend her life.

I'm thinking of the anger and hostility, and maybe fear and anxiety for their own status, felt by and maybe recognized by those scribes and Pharisees.  I'm thinking of how this sinful woman may have been feeling hatred, anger, fear, anxiety, and hostility; she was probably blaming her partner in sin.  So later, after our narrative of Jesus's wisdom and kindness ends, and after amending her life, the woman herself may have "heard" Jesus, recognized His wisdom and loving kindness, and prayed for forgiveness.  And so we are saved.

By Mary Haynes Kuhlman

 

 

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