Joh 8:4 -12 “They said to Him, “Teacher, this woman was caught in adultery, in the very act. “Now Moses, in the law, commanded us that such should be stoned. But what do You say?” This they said, testing Him, that they might have something of which to accuse Him. But Jesus stooped down and wrote on the ground with His finger, as though He did not hear. 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. And again He stooped down and wrote on the ground.

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. When Jesus had raised Himself up and saw no one but the woman, He said to her, “Woman, where are those accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you?” She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said to her, “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.” Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”
            One day in December as I was on my way to Jasper a van passed me on the Interstate. On the van was the name of the company Lift One. The first three numbers for the telephone number on the van were 855. I felt like the Holy Spirit wanted to speak something to me from what I was seeing on the back of the van. I felt like He gave me something to challenge our congregation to do in the coming year. Perhaps it will be a good challenge for all of you who read this. 

            The number eight can be the number that signifies new beginnings in Hebrew numbers and entering covenant relationship with God. Also, the number 55 always reminds me of Isaiah 55. In that chapter, there is an invitation for us to experience a new beginning turning from a life out of the will of God into a good life in the will of God. Isa 55:1 -3¶ “Ho! Everyone who thirsts, Come to the waters; And you who have no money, Come, buy and eat. Yes, come, buy wine and milk Without money and without price. Why do you spend money for what is not bread, And your wages for what does not satisfy? Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good, And let your soul delight itself in abundance. Incline your ear, and come to Me. Hear, and your soul shall live; And I will make an everlasting covenant with you-The sure mercies of David.”
            The woman that was caught in adultery had something missing in her life. She had tried to fill what was missing with an adulterous relationship. All of us in some way have tried to fulfill what was missing in our lives in some way. It may or may not have been through sexual sin. It may have been in a lot of ways. And all the ways are certainly too numerous to name here. The Bible tells us in Ro 3:23 “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”

            On the other hand some of us like I was at one time may believe that our sins are to bad and that there is no way that they can be forgiven. That is why I love this passage so much. A woman who is deserving of death according to the law(although they were also supposed to bring the man there as well) is pardoned by our Lord Jesus Christ the sinless Son of God, the Incarnate God.

            Sometimes as Christians we all may be like the Pharisees. We get ready to stone some people. We want to stone those who have been caught in their sin. When really it is an opportunity for us to show Christ to them. Jesus told the Pharisees that any of them that were without sin could cast the first stone. None of them could cast a stone. They were testing Jesus. Sometimes when we offer mercy people will test us. They may think that we are to soft, or that we are condoning sin. 

            Jesus was not condoning the woman’s sin. He was pointing her to a better life. He doesn’t tell her “honey just don’t get caught the next time.” He forgives her and He tells her to go and sin no more. I want to think that He was pointing her to a life that was fulfilling. A life that Isaiah describes in this way : Isa 55:12,13 “For you shall go out with joy, And be led out with peace; The mountains and the hills Shall break forth into singing before you, And all the trees of the field shall clap their hands. Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress tree, And instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle tree; And it shall be to the LORD for a name, For an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.”
            As He did with the woman caught in adultery He stands ready to forgive and grant eternal life and life and life more abundantly here on earth. No matter what your sin is He is ready to forgive you of that sin. He also is able to deliver us from those sinful lifestyles. And when we catch ourselves becoming like the Pharisees He is willing to make us more like Him.  

 That day when the Pharisees were testing Him. He lifted one and He encouraged one. And from what the scriptures tell us about Jesus prayer life I am sure that He had started that day praying for those that He would encounter that day. So today my prayer for all of us is that we will Lift one, pray for one, and share with one. It works!
Let us Pray 

Lord Jesus we thank you that You forgive the most regrettable sins that we have ever committed. Today help us to pray for those who don’t know you. Help us to encourage all, and give us a desire to share the Gospel with those who need it so badly. 
In Jesus Name


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