When they had set her in the mist, they said to him, “Teacher, this woman was caught in adultery, in the very act. Now Moses and the law commanded us that such should be stoned. What do YOU say, Jesus?”
But Jesus stooped down, and wrote on the ground with his finger, as though he didn’t hear them. So he’s officially ignoring them. So when they continued asking him, he raised himself up and said to them, “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.”
Then those who heard it, being convicted by their conscience, went out one by one; beginning with the oldest even to the last, and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. Jesus raised himself up, he saw no one but the woman, and he said to her, “Woman, where are those accusers of yours. Has no one condemned you?”
She says, “No one Lord.”
Jesus said to her, “No doubt,” with a smile, “Neither do I charge you with an offense. Go and sin no more.”
I think Jesus for us, exemplifies the attitude, the heart, and the spirit of an advocate.
Notice they say “Jesus, she’s caught in adultery,” and they proudly declare “We caught her in the very act,” and they say, “So what do you say Jesus?” They quote the law accurately, “What do you say Jesus?”
Notice he uh, he says nothing. Which tells me that the spirit of an advocate is slow to speak.
If we’re all honest, it’s uh, it’s pretty easy to let the attitude of an accuser wiggle its way into your life. I think if we’re all honest, we’ve had a rock, or two, in our hands. It’s easy for us to go, oh I’m not , I’m not, I’m not an accuser. But it’s in our attitude. It’s in our spirit.
Accusers have levels of lossless. Have you noticed this? I’ve noticed this in my own life. I define levels. Particularly in industries that are at the forefront of entertainment, in music. We easily throw rocks at actors and actresses and artists. I can’t believe their lyrics. I can’t believe their music. I can’t believe the movie they did, oh my gosh it’s so bad. I hear Christians making fun of prominent figures in entertainment and on television, because we can take cheap shots at them, because we think we’ll never know them. But some of them are my friends. And I’m trying to pastor them and love them, and yet I hear Christians making fun of them. They need a church too! They need a Pastor too! They need someone who will show them the Love of Jesus too! Is our Gospel big enough to welcome everybody in our church! Are we big enough for actors and actresses and artists! Are we big enough to say “Come on, you’re welcomed here, this is your family, this is your home. We love you.”
Jesus is the Great Leveler. Even the physical posture of Jesus preaches the message of Grace to us. For Jesus posture is down in the dirt. While the religious, pompous, arrogant leaders of the day; they stand in their arrogance with rocks in their hands. These postures even demonstrate the attitude of an ACCUSER and the attitude of an ADVOCATE. Oh they stand so tall and so proud, but with the words of Jesus, he levels the playing field and he says, “Oh, oh, Pastor, Reverend, Bishop, you’re the same as this woman! You’re no different.”
We don’t need any more churches that are standing in their arrogance with rocks, and their hands in their pockets. We need churches who are in the dirt with people that are broken, and hurting, and need the Love of God. That’s got to be the church. We run towards the messes, we run towards the broken, we run towards the hurting. We don’t turn away! We run towards them! We’re there to hold them and to love them, and defend them, and think well of them, and speak well of them, and believe the best! That’s the spirit of our Savior!
What if we had a whole church that was thousands, then became tens of thousands, then hundreds of thousands: In the same region, and all of us carry with us the attitude of an Advocate. The attitude of Compassion, and Mercy, and Grace, and Love towards hurting, broken, lost people.
And at the end of the story, Jesus tells this sinful woman, he says, “I don’t come to bring you accusation,” he says, “Now go, and sin no more.”
Do you know why? Because she had just encountered Grace, and Faith erupted in her heart, and now she can finally live the life she only dreamed of. Because it’s Grace that sets people free from sin! Not law, not legalism, not customs, not traditions, not dos and don’ts, but the GRACE OF GOD.