April 7, 2019
(5th Sunday of Lent, C)
The Pharisees said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught
in the very act of committing adultery. Now in the law, Moses commanded us to stone such women. So what do you say?” Jn_8:1-11
In His testing by the Pharisees, Jesus was presented with a moral dilemma. The fifth of the Ten Commandments demand us not to kill another person. And yet the Pharisees tell Jesus that Moses himself stated that the penalty for adultery would be death. And they knew that Jesus respected the dignity of ALL life. So, who is the rightful judge and executioner when the sin is proven and the laws are contradictory. The legalistic Pharisees believed that the Mosaic “Amendments” overrode the “constitution.” And to test Jesus they presented this “lose-lose” situation for His own self-condemnation. But Jesus, of course, being God, knew the evil of their hearts and “one-upped” their trap by mirroring it right back to them.
He responded, “Let the one among you who is without sin
be the first to throw a stone at her.” Jn_8:1-11
You know what, beloved, EVERY sin is abominable in God’s sight, from the very smallest to the absolute worst. So WHO IS the judge of anyone else’s imperfections? We’re all sinners in one way or another.
Jesus could not have presented His case any more concisely and pointedly! They say that, with every pointing finger of ours there are three others pointing right back at us. So the next time we feel quick to judge, quick to condemn and quick to punish, maybe we need to look inside first and make sure all of our own ducks are in order! And even then, we’re still not the designated Judge, only God is!
And thanks be to God, He’s a merciful, forgiving, loving God!
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