Stoning to death
8 And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground.
9 And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.
10 When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee?
11 She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.
In this incident recorded in the Gospel of John, we read when some people came to condemn a woman to death by stoning according to the Jewish law Jesus saves her.
These people were not taking the law in their hands. They were just following the Law given by the Lord through Moses and as understood by them, which stated an adulterous woman or man should be stoned to death.
There were many other laws given in the books of Leviticus, Numbers and also Deuteronomy wherein people were to be stoned to death for many other reasons, like worshiping idols or other gods, blaspheming God. Some of the craziest among them were if a son does not listen to his parents and if the parents were fed up with him, all they needed to do was bring him to the elders and declare him stubborn and rebellious, not obeying their voice; being a glutton, and a drunkard, then they would stone the son to death. Also as person found doing work on a Sabbath day was to be put to death by stoning. There is one where a young girl married and proved to be not a virgin as committed by the girl's father then the girl would be stoned to death at the door of the father's house. Even a person having an evil spirit was to be stoned to death.
But we see Jesus did none of these things, He delivered people from evil spirit, saved sinners from being stoned, yet it is written He kept the Law of Moses and was without blemish (did not break the Law).
When I debate with Muslims many of them jump to these scriptures and it becomes difficult to explain to them. I have seen many Christian simply state these laws are old and not to be followed, but we see Jesus said He did not come to change any Law but fulfil it.
One important thing we need to understand all the Laws of God even those given by Moses still stand. But then what the Jews understood of the Law of the Lord given through Moses is not what the Lord meant. Jesus kept the Law in its true meaning. The Bible says Jesus added Grace other that Truth. That means He showed us the true meaning of the Law and also gave us the grace to be saved from the consequence of the Law.
We all will be judged as per the Law of the Lord given through Moses and other Prophets but the virginity as stated in the book of Moses for which we will be stoned (killed) for will not be the physical virginity but our spiritual virginity. God calls going after other gods as whoring so also worshipping of idols. The murder we will be stoned for will not be more the natural murder but the spiritual murder we do when we cause people to fall spiritually. Jesus said it is better to put a large stone round our neck and jump in the sea rather than harm any spiritually little one.
It is very scary when we understand the terms in which we will be judged on the Day of Judgment but then Jesus also saves us that day like He did to the woman in today's message.
The most amazing thing I learnt of late, as the Bible says on Judgment Day we will be judged not by God but by man - the Son of Man Jesus. Jesus said God has given Him the authority to judge for He is man and He is found worthy to judge. He also fulfils the Law of the Lord given through Moses that no one be put to death unless there is more than 1 witness. That is why Jesus says He will not judge according His human understanding (since He sits on Judgment Seat as Son of Man) but says the Word of God will judge us and the Spirit of God will be also witness to our judgment. Therefore 3 will be in Judgement over us, the Son of Man, the Word and the Spirit of God.
But the most, greatest good news for us is that we would not be judged according to the righteousness of God but according to the righteousness of man since it is Son of Man who sits on judgement seat. If we were judges according to God and by God none of us would go to Heaven, but since we are judged by man we have hope to go to Heaven.
On Judgement day we would not be able to speak or defend for ourselves since the books would be open. These books means the records of all that we did, spoke and thought as recorded by the Lord and also the same as recorded in our hearts (inner-man). The things we are forgiven for would not exist in both but that which we haven't repented for will be there.
Like today's message says the woman was condemned according the Law but yet was saved for she took refuge in Jesus Christ. She did not argue or try to defend herself. She knew according to the Law she was due to be stoned to death but her hope in Jesus Christ saved her. So also all of us who take refuge in Christ on the Judgement Day will be saved. Those who try to justify themselves by the works will be condemned, but those who realize it is not their good works that erases their wrong doings but the only thing that saves them is taking refuge in the grace of Jesus Christ and they alone will be able to enter Heaven. Bibles says those who have the Truth in them and are covered by the Blood of Christ which symbolizes Righteousness of Christ will enter Heaven.
Let us be like the women and like Jesus was writing on the ground, what God has written will be fulfilled.
[ Prayer Starter ]
Lord, we thank You for You are a merciful God. You know none of us would stand any chance to be saved but in your mercy You made a way for us. Lord, we thank You for the Word, your Spirit and for your Son Jesus Christ through whom we have the hope of salvation. We know if we take refuge in Him we will live and have life in abundance for your Word is true...
This prayer we make in Jesus' Name, Amen.
[ Reference ]
Leviticus 20:27 - A man also or woman that hath a familiar spirit, or that is a wizard, shall surely be put to death: they shall stone them with stones: their blood shall be upon them.
Leviticus 24:16 - And he that blasphemeth the name of the LORD, he shall surely be put to death, and all the congregation shall certainly stone him: as well the stranger, as he that is born in the land, when he blasphemeth the name of the LORD, shall be put to death.
21 And he that killeth a beast, he shall restore it: and he that killeth a man, he shall be put to death.
22 Ye shall have one manner of law, as well for the stranger, as for one of your own country: for I am the LORD your God.
23 And Moses spake to the children of Israel, that they should bring forth him that had cursed out of the camp, and stone him with stones. And the children of Israel did as the LORD commanded Moses.
32 And while the children of Israel were in the wilderness, they found a man that gathered sticks upon the sabbath day.
33 And they that found him gathering sticks brought him unto Moses and Aaron, and unto all the congregation.
34 And they put him in ward, because it was not declared what should be done to him.
35 And the LORD said unto Moses, The man shall be surely put to death: all the congregation shall stone him with stones without the camp.
36 And all the congregation brought him without the camp, and stoned him with stones, and he died; as the LORD commanded Moses.
6 If thy brother, the son of thy mother, or thy son, or thy daughter, or the wife of thy bosom, or thy friend, which is as thine own soul, entice thee secretly, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which thou hast not known, thou, nor thy fathers;
7 Namely, of the gods of the people which are round about you, nigh unto thee, or far off from thee, from the one end of the earth even unto the other end of the earth;
8 Thou shalt not consent unto him, nor hearken unto him; neither shall thine eye pity him, neither shalt thou spare, neither shalt thou conceal him:
9 But thou shalt surely kill him; thine hand shall be first upon him to put him to death, and afterwards the hand of all the people.
10 And thou shalt stone him with stones, that he die; because he hath sought to thrust thee away from the LORD thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.
2 If there be found among you, within any of thy gates which the LORD thy God giveth thee, man or woman, that hath wrought wickedness in the sight of the LORD thy God, in transgressing his covenant,
3 And hath gone and served other gods, and worshipped them, either the sun, or moon, or any of the host of heaven, which I have not commanded;
4 And it be told thee, and thou hast heard of it, and enquired diligently, and, behold, it be true, and the thing certain, that such abomination is wrought in Israel:
5 Then shalt thou bring forth that man or that woman, which have committed that wicked thing, unto thy gates, even that man or that woman, and shalt stone them with stones, till they die.
6 At the mouth of two witnesses, or three witnesses, shall he that is worthy of death be put to death; but at the mouth of one witness he shall not be put to death.
7 The hands of the witnesses shall be first upon him to put him to death, and afterward the hands of all the people. So thou shalt put the evil away from among you.
18 If a man have a stubborn and rebellious son, which will not obey the voice of his father, or the voice of his mother, and that, when they have chastened him, will not hearken unto them:
19 Then shall his father and his mother lay hold on him, and bring him out unto the elders of his city, and unto the gate of his place;
20 And they shall say unto the elders of his city, This our son is stubborn and rebellious, he will not obey our voice; he is a glutton, and a drunkard.
21 And all the men of his city shall stone him with stones, that he die: so shalt thou put evil away from among you; and all Israel shall hear, and fear.
20 But if this thing be true, and the tokens of virginity be not found for the damsel:
21 Then they shall bring out the damsel to the door of her father's house, and the men of her city shall stone her with stones that she die: because she hath wrought folly in Israel, to play the whore in her father's house: so shalt thou put evil away from among you.
22 If a man be found lying with a woman married to an husband, then they shall both of them die, both the man that lay with the woman, and the woman: so shalt thou put away evil from Israel.
23 If a damsel that is a virgin be betrothed unto an husband, and a man find her in the city, and lie with her;
24 Then ye shall bring them both out unto the gate of that city, and ye shall stone them with stones that they die; the damsel, because she cried not, being in the city; and the man, because he hath humbled his neighbour's wife: so thou shalt put away evil from among you.
26 For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself;
27 And hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.
John 12:48 - He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day.
Matthew 5:17 - Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.
26 Therefore if the uncircumcision keep the righteousness of the law, shall not his uncircumcision be counted for circumcision?
27 And shall not uncircumcision which is by nature, if it fulfil the law, judge thee, who by the letter and circumcision dost transgress the law?
28 For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh:
29 But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.
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