Sunday, June 23, 2013

Do Not Condemn

This morning's Sunday school lesson:

The Pharisees, or religious leaders, couldn’t stand Jesus. He kept proving them wrong, and they didn’t like it. But the people loved Him. They saw Him heal a paralyzed man, a woman who had had health problems all her life, blind men, and more. He had even raised a girl and a boy from the dead! He turned water into wine. He told interesting stories to teach lessons, so people would remember what they learned. What was not to love about this guy? Well, when He constantly proves you wrong, it gets annoying. It gets even more annoying when He keeps mentioning how you’re just as sinful as the “sinners” you condemn! The Pharisees wanted to find a way to turn the crowds against Him, because they couldn’t just do away with Him without making the crowds mad at them. So they thought of a clever trap. Nobody could get out of this. Bwahahahahahaha!!!

The Pharisees knew that Jesus was a teacher. If they could trap Him into saying something that was everyone knew was bad, maybe they could get people to stop believing Him. So they found a sinful woman and brought her along. They said to Him, “Hey, teacher! This woman has been caught in the act of breaking the promises she made to her husband when they got married. In the Law, Moses said that we’re supposed to stone people who do that. What do you think?”

They thought they were so smart. What could Jesus say? If He said they should stone her, He would be contradicting everything He had taught on forgiveness and love. If He said they should let her live, He would be breaking the Law.

But Jesus knew why they were asking the question, and He was smarter than them. It’s one of the perks of being God. He decided to let them wait a bit while He bent down and wrote something on the ground. Then He stood up and turned the question around to them. “OK,” He said, “I want a volunteer. Whichever one of you has never sinned in your life, come forward, and you get to throw the first stone! Give it your best shot!” Then He bent down and wrote some more stuff on the ground.

Now the Pharisees were trapped. Everyone has sinned at some point in their life, and if anyone came forward to throw a stone, they would obviously be lying about having never sinned, and the people would turn against the Pharisees instead! One by one, the embarrassed Pharisees started to leave. The older ones left first. Pretty soon, the younger ones were gone too.

Once everyone was gone, Jesus stood up and said to the woman, “So, ma’am, where’d they go? Nobody has condemned you?”

“No, sir,” she said. “Nobody.”

Jesus, the only person in the crowd who had never sinned, said to her, “Then I don’t condemn you either. Go, and don’t sin any more.”

1 comment :

  1. Good "teaser" and event description. It is so good to know that the God who made us, loves us and sustains us is the same one who forgives us when we confess and turn from our sin/s.