Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone. John 8:7
Lisa felt no sympathy for those who cheated on their spouse . . . until she found herself deeply unsatisfied with her marriage and struggling to resist a dangerous attraction. That painful experience helped her gain a new compassion for others and greater understanding of Christ’s words: “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone” (John 8:7).
Jesus was teaching in the temple courts when He made that statement. A group of teachers of the law and Pharisees had just dragged a woman caught in adultery before Him and challenged, “In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?” (v. 5). Because they considered Jesus a threat to their authority, the question was “a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing him” (v. 6)—and getting rid of Him.
Yet when Jesus replied, “Let any one of you who is without sin . . .” not one of the woman’s accusers could bring themselves to pick up a stone. One by one, they walked away.
Before we critically judge another’s behavior while looking lightly at our own sin, let’s remember that all of us “fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). Instead of condemnation, our Savior showed this woman—and you and me—grace and hope (John 3:16; 8:10–11). How can we not do the same for others?
Reflect & Pray
How can you put the lesson of John 8 into action in how you treat others? How can you use your own experience to help others facing similar challenges?
Dear Lord, thank You for loving us! Help us to look with compassion on others and to be gracious in all we say and do.