When Jesus walked this earth, He epitomized forgiveness. Jesus was and is forgiving. He was and is merciful to all. When Jesus walked this earth, He wasn’t condemning like the religious leaders were, but He forgave. He was generous in His forgiveness, His mercy, His love, and His time. Although, He had an appointment with death, Jesus made time to give of Himself. He was gentle, good, and gracious. He never turn anyone away, but welcomed everyone who came to Him (Luke 9:10-11), and He met the needs of all who came in contact with Him.
Let’s look at a unique woman with a unique story. She’s a woman with flaws. She has done some things that we may say is unforgivable, but Jesus’ compassion fails not. He has compassion on this woman, forgives her, and loved her….flaws and all.
“Jesus returned to the Mount of Olives, but early the next morning he was back again at the Temple. A crowd soon gathered, and he sat down and taught them. As he was speaking, the teachers of religious law and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in the act of adultery. They put her in front of the crowd. ‘Teacher,’ they said to Jesus, ‘this woman was caught in the act of adultery. The law of Moses says to stone her. What do you say?'” (John 8:1-5, NLT).
In today’s passage, we find a woman caught red handed doing something that was unlawful and sinful in the eyes of God (Ex. 20:14; Matt. 5:27; Rom. 7:3). And in the middle of her sinful act, she was caught, and brought to the church. Her accusers made reference to the Ten Commandments, demanding that she be stoned to death. There, in the temple, in front of everyone, this woman was made a spectacle. She was placed in the center for the entire congregation, so all could see. Her sin was exposed to all who were there.
Can you see all those righteous folks staring at her with contempt? Can you see them looking at her with condemning and disdaining eyes? Can you imagine how embarrassed she was? How scared and shameful she must have felt? Can you imagine how humiliating it must have been for her?
Have you been there?
Think about it. Think about a sin you have committed and your pastor, the religious leaders, people you have high respect for has caught you red handed, in the very act. Not only has your Pastor caught you in this sinful act, but he or she brings you in the midst of the congregation to make you an example. How would you feel?
To the Pharisees and the scribes’ surprise, Jesus didn’t condemn her! Jesus didn’t judge her! He didn’t point His finger at her and tell her how wrong she was. He didn’t tell her how disappointed He was in her, but He had compassion on her. He saw her need. Though this woman had committed an ugly sin and was caught in the very act, Jesus looked past her faults and saw her needs. This woman had a need to be forgiven. And although she did not deserve Jesus’ forgiveness, He forgave this woman and showed her mercy.
Just like the Pharisees brought this woman in front of the church to be condemned, Satan does us the same way. He brings every fault, every flaw, every mistake to God, pleading for Him to condemn us, but because of the work that Jesus did at the cross, God continues to show us grace and mercy.
My sister, none of us deserves the forgiveness of God, but He forgave us back on Calvary. The veil was torn in two, from top to bottom, giving us access to God (Matt. 27:51). Now, we can boldly go to the throne of grace and ask for forgiveness. According to 1 John 1:9, when we confess our sins, God forgives us.
“The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning” (Lamentation 3:22-23, NLT).
What sin are you holding on to? What have you not confessed to God? My friend, what are you waiting for? Go to God. Ask for forgiveness, and receive His mercy, now!
My prayer is that we all remember that there’s mercy, grace, healing and forgiveness at the feet of Jesus.
Your Sis and Encourager,
Rhovonda L. Brown
Co-founder/Co-pastor of The Sanctuary Christian Fellowship Church
Founder/Executive Director of Martha & Mary Ministries, Walking in Freedom!
Founder/President of The Pillar of Hope
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