Today’s selected reading continues in the New Testament gospel account of the life and ministry of Jesus the Christ as written and recorded by the apostle John. More specifically, today’s passage is found in verses twenty-one through thirty of the eighth chapter. When you come to this particular portion of scripture you will find the apostle John continuing to write concerning Jesus’ interaction with the Jews as He would return to Jewry. As you come to the seventh chapter of this gospel you will find in the very first verse of the chapter that Jesus walked in Galilee for age was no longer willing to walk in Jewry. The apostle John makes it quite obvious within the opening verses of the seventh chapter of this gospel the reason why Jesus continued to talk in Galilee, for the apostle Paul reveals how the Jews sought to kill Jesus. In fact, as you read the seventh chapter of this gospel you will not only find the apostle John linking this chapter and the events which took place within them to that which took place in the fifth chapter, but you will also find Jesus the Christ linking the events of this chapter to those of the firth chapter. Of course this gospel had not yet been written, so Jesus wasn’t actually linking what would become the seventh chapter of the gospel of John to the fifth. What Jesus was doing was linking the events which took place the last time He walked in Jewry to the events which were present taking place. What is both unique and interesting when you consider the words which are found in this passage is that the chapter opens up with Jesus being unwilling to walk in Jewry because they sought to kill Him, and His brethren urging Him to go down unto the feast in order that He might reveal and manifest Himself unto all those who would be present within the city of Jerusalem. Undoubtedly Jesus brethren were aware that the feast of tabernacles was at hand, and that there would be countless souls from Judaea, Jerusalem and the surrounding regions who would make their way to the city in observance and celebration of the feast. Moreover, Jesus Himself would have been aware of the feast as the apostle John places much emphasis on the feasts which Moses commanded unto the children of Israel through the Law given Him by the living God. The apostle John makes it perfectly clear that in response to Jesus brethren urging and imploring Him to journey down to Jerusalem, He originally and initially balked at going down. That which is truly unique about this passage is that while on the surface Jesus declared unto His brethren that He would not go down unto Jerusalem for the feast, He would end up going down to Jerusalem and unto the feast—albeit privately in order not to be noticed. Ultimately Jesus would make His way from Galilee to the city of Jerusalem in order that He might be present within Jerusalem during the time of this great feast.
As you continue reading the seventh chapter of the New Testament gospel which the apostle John wrote you will not only find Jesus having gone down unto Jerusalem, but you will also find that His presence was discovered and noticed, as many within the city became aware of His presence within the city. When you read the seventh chapter you will find that there was much to do and much conversation concerning and regarding Jesus the Christ being present in Jerusalem—perhaps because of the division that existed between those who would seek to kill Him and those who would receive Him and believe in His name. In fact, as you read the words which are found within this passage you will find the apostle John writing and speaking of a great schism and division which was present within Jewry among the Jewish people as there were those who perceived Him to be the Prophet, while others perceived Him to be the Christ. That which we find in the seventh chapter is actually quite astounding and unique, for within it we find a number of statements and declarations which Jesus made unto the Jews concerning Himself, as He would make powerful and Pinter statements concerning Himself, concerning His Father, as well as concerning where He came from and where He was going. What so intrigues me about that which is found in the New Testament gospel of John is it only the emphasis that was placed on the Jewish feasts which would be celebrated within the city of Jerusalem—particularly the feast of the Passover, the feast of Pentecost, and the feast of tabernacles—but also the incredible emphasis that was placed on Jesus the Christ as the Son of the living God, and as God as His Father. In order for us to truly understand that which we find in the New Testament gospel of John we must come face to face with the words which Jesus Christ spoke of concerning Himself. In all reality, the New Testament gospel of John is saturated and inundated with countless statements and declarations made by Jesus the Christ concerning Himself—statements of identity and purpose. If you want to understand that which is found within this gospel you must read it through the lens of Jesus Christ understanding His purpose and Idenity, and it was that concept of identity and purpose that fueled and propelled Him within and throughout His public ministry. What’s more, is that I would dare say that Jesus’ understanding of His identity and purpose was what allowed Him to be able to return unto the place where men sought to take Him and to ultimately kill Him.
I have to admit that I absolutely love the words which are found and written in the New Testament gospel of John, for within its words and pages are countless manifestations of purpose and identity. What’s more, is that I am thoroughly convinced that if you are one who is desperately seeking to know and understand your own purpose and identity, you would benefit greatly from reading that which is found in this particular gospel. The gospel of John—unlike the other three gospels—contains a tremendous amount of the language and words which Jesus spoke. In fact, outside of chapters five through seven of the New Testament gospel of Matthew, as well as chapters twenty-four and twenty-five of the same new testament gospel there aren’t any other places within the gospels where so much if Jesus’ words are recorded and revealed. The New Testament gospel of John is so incredibly unique in that it contains account after account of Jesus speaking unto those whom He encountered—within Judaea, within Samaria, and evening within Galilee. When you read the gospel which the apostle John wrote you will encounter example after example of Jesus the Christ speaking directly unto those whom He would encounter on a continual and daily basis within and throughout His earthly unitary. We dare not, we cannot and must not lose sight of and miss this important reality, for to do so would be to miss out on the awesome significance of what is recorded within this particular gospel. I am convinced that the gospel which the apostle John wrote concerning the life and ministry of Jesus the Christ is and was one that sought to reveal one central and powerful truth concerning Jesus the Christ—namely, that He knew who He was, He knew where He had come from, and He knew where He was going. We must pay close attention to this awesome and incredible reality, for by doing so we catch a wonderful and powerful glimpse into the heart and mind of Jesus the Christ. Through the words which we find written and recorded within this particular gospel we are given tremendous insight into the heart and mind of Jesus the Christ, as He revealed Himself unto those whom He encountered—those who would believe on and receive Him. What’s more, is that through the Mia particular gospel—perhaps more than any of the other three—we find Jesus the Christ placing heavy emphasis on the reality of His Father and openly speaking of His Father. In fact, it was precisely because Jesus had spoken of the Father that the Jews sought to kill Him, for they had an incredibly difficult time comprehending Jesus speaking of God as His Father. What makes this quite interesting is when you consider that Jesus even directly linked and connected us with the reality that God is our Father as well when He taught the disciples to pray using the words “Our Father.”
The New Testament gospel which the apostle John wrote is one of the most unique gospels which was written within the New Testament, for it contains a great deal of the language and words which Jesus the Christ spoke while walking upon the earth. Within and throughout this gospel which was written by the apostle John we encounter the wonderful words which Jesus the Christ would speak unto those whom He encountered—not only within Judaea, but also within Samaria and Galilee. In all reality, when and as you read the words which are found within this gospel you will encounter and come face to face with the awesome reality of the words which Jesus the Christ would speak to and among men as He walked upon the earth and made Himself known unto those whom He would seek to teach, speak unto and minister. As I sit here and continue to consider the words which are written and recorded within the New Testament gospel which was written by the apostle John I can’t help but be confronted with and by the tremendous reality that the entire gospel has its foundation in the words which are found in the first and opening chapter of the gospel. What I mean is that if you want to seek to understand the words which are written and contained within this gospel you must read it through the lens of the first chapter and the words which are found and contained therein. It is that which is found in the first and opening chapter of this gospel that perfectly sets the stage for everything that would be written within the following chapters and verses, and the gospel cannot be properly understood without and apart from coming face to face with this reality. The apostle John—when seeking to present a wonderful and powerful picture of Jesus the Christ—sought to begin in eternity and in the realm of the divine in order that He might properly position Jesus the Christ to those who would read the words found within this gospel. Whereas the apostle Matthew and the physician Luke chose to begin with the humanity of Jesus the Christ and linking Him to both Abraham and David, the apostle John chose not to begin with the humanity of Jesus the Christ, but with the divinity of Jesus the Christ. In other words, that which the apostle John sought to do from the very opening of this particular gospel is present us with the wonderful picture of where Jesus Christ came from and who He was. Please don’t miss and lose sight of this awesome and tremendous reality, for if you truly want to understand the gospel of John—yea, even the four gospels which were written concerning Jesus the Christ—it is absolutely necessary and imperative that you come face to face with the divinity of Jesus Christ as the eternal Son of God who was in the bosom of the Father before time and space began. Matthew and Luke chose to begin with the humanity of Jesus as having descended from Abraham, and even from David, however, the apostle John chose to take a different approach and begin not in humanity, but divinity, and not in the realm of time and space, but in the realm of eternity. Consider if you will the words which are found in the opening chapter of this New Testament gospel written by the apostle John beginning with the first verse:
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by Him; and without Him was not any thing made that was made. In Him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through Him might believe. He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made by Him, and the world knew Him not. He came unto His own, and His own received Him not. But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name: which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth. John bare witness of Him, and cried, saying, This was He of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me: for He was before me. And of His fullness Have all we received, and grace for grace. For the Law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ. No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the Boston of the Father, He hath declared Him” (John 1:1-18).
The words which we find in the opening chapter of the New Testament gospel which the apostle John wrote must stand at the very center and forefront of the entire gospel, for within the opening verse of this chapter the apostle John firmly settles and establishes who Jesus Christ is and where He came from. It is absolutely necessary and imperative that we recognize and understand this awesome reality and truth, for when the apostle John began and opened up this gospel, he did so by beginning with the emphatic declaration that the Word was in the beginning, that the Word was in the beginning with God, and the word was indeed and was in fact God. Oh, please don’t miss the awesome and wonderful significance of this statement, for from the very outset of the gospel the apostle John brings his readers and audience face to face with the tremendous knowledge that Jesus was the Word which was in the beginning, that Jesus was the Word which was in the beginning with God, and that was the Word which was God. What’s more, is that if you continue reading this first chapter of the gospel which was written by the apostle John you will encounter a statement that further confirms who the Word was which was mentioned in the opening verse of this chapter. If and as you come to the fourteenth verse of this very same chapter you will find the apostle John emphatically declaring that the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us. With these words written and recorded within the fourteenth verse of the chapter the apostle John directly links that which is found in the fourteenth verse of the chapter and that which was found in the first and opening verse. In the opening verse we discover that the Word was in the beginning, that the Word was in the beginning with God, and that the Word was God, while in the fourteenth verse we encounter the truth that the Word which was spoken of and mentioned in the opening verse was in fact Jesus who was the only begotten Son, which was in the bosom of the Father, and hath declared Him unto men. Dear reader, please recognize and understand this absolutely crucial key, for it is necessary to unlock everything that is written and found within this particular gospel which was written concerning the life and ministry of Jesus the Christ. If you seek to understand the gospel which was written concerning Jesus the Christ you must recognize and understand that Jesus the Christ came from God, that Jesus Christ was with God in the beginning, and that Jesus the Christ would return and go unto the Father at the appointed time when His work upon the earth was finished and completed. By the time we come to the fifth chapter of this gospel we encounter Jesus the Christ who begins to speak—not only of where He came from, and not only who He was, but also who His Father was, and where He was going. Oh, please don’t lose sight of this awesome and wonderful reality, for it is the key to unlocking the entire gospel which was written by the apostle John within the New Testament.
When you come to the eighth chapter of the New Testament gospel of John you will find it beginning and opening with Jesus sitting down in the temple and teaching all those who gathered and came unto Him. In the midst of Jesus teaching all those who would come unto Him, the scribes and the Pharisees interrupted His teaching by dragging a woman who had been taken in adultery, and who had been taken in the very act. It would have been one thing for this woman to have merely been accused of adultery as it would have potentially been her word against that of the man with whom the alleged infidelity and indiscretion took place. This was not the case on this particular day, for the apostle John makes it abundantly clear that not only was this woman taken in adultery, but this woman was caught in the very act of adultery itself. There was absolutely no denying that she had committed adultery, and that she had fornicated with a man, and the scribes and Pharisees dragged this woman—perhaps from the very bed of adultery itself—into the presence of Jesus the Christ. Oh, I still can’t understand how and why it was necessary for religion to get involved with the adultery of this woman, and/or why religion seeks to get into oiled with our sin and transgression at all. There is not a doubt in my mind that it is a very dangerous thing when religion seeks to get involved with our sin and with our transgression, as religion has always and will always seek to accuse us in the house of the Lord, and accuse us in the presence of the Father and Son, and will even call for our judgment. As you read the account of this woman you will find that not only did religion drag this woman into the courts of the Temple, and into the presence of Jesus, but it also sought to accuse and condemn this woman of her adultery and immorality. The eighth chapter of the New Testament gospel which the apostle John wrote began with a woman—much like the fourth chapter of the same gospel did—and brings us face to face with a woman who was caught and taken in the very act of adultery. In the fourth chapter of this New Testament gospel we encounter a woman who had been married five different times to five different men, and the man she was currently with was not even her husband. In the eighth chapter of this same New Testament gospel we find—not a woman who had previously had five husbands, but a woman who was taken and caught in the very act of adultery. In the case of the Samaritan woman there was no one to accuse or condemn her of her multiple and countless failed marriages, however, in the case of this woman in Jewry the scribes and Pharisees were there to both accuse and condemn her in the very presence of Jesus the Christ. Please don’t miss and lose sight of this particular reality, for not only did religion seek to drag this woman from her adultery and immorality, but religion sought to drag this woman—together with her shame, her disgrace, her humiliation, and perhaps even her regret—into the very presence of Jesus the Christ in the very house of the living God.
I am completely and utterly amazed that when you read the words which are found within the eighth chapter of the New Testament gospel which the apostle John wrote you find it beginning in the Temple with a woman caught and taken in the very act of adultery. The eighth chapter—while it does in fact begins in the Temple—does not begin simply and solely with Jesus teaching the people and that was it, but with a woman taken and caught in the act of adultery, and dragged into the courts of the Temple, and dragged into the presence of Jesus the Christ. What I so love and appreciate about the account of this woman who was caught and taken in the act of adultery is that when Jesus heard the accusation(s) of the scribes and Pharisees, and perhaps even when He saw the stones ready in their hands to stone her to death, He simply stooped down and began writing in the dirt and dust of the ground. Pause for a moment and consider the tremendous fact that Jesus would actually choose to get down in the dirt and dust of this woman’s shame, guilt, humiliation and iniquity, and would begin writing in the midst of it. Scripture is unclear what Jesus the Christ wrote on the ground, and there is speculation that He wrote each of the Ten Commandments there in the dirt and dust of the courts of the Temple. It is quite possible that that which Jesus wrote in the dirt and dust of the Temple was in fact the Law which was written upon tablets of stone atop the mountain of God in the wilderness of Sinai. We can’t tell for sure what Jesus wrote in the dirt and dust of the ground of the Temple, but we can be certain that it was certainly enough to bring conviction into the hearts of the scribes and Pharisees—particularly and especially when you read and consider the fact that whatever Jesus wrote was coupled together with a statement unto the scribes and Pharisees that he which has no sin among them should and could cast the first stone. I have to admit that I absolutely love how the apostle John wrote within this chapter that when Jesus heard the words and accusation of the scribes and Pharisees, He said absolutely nothing to them, and merely stooped down to the ground, got in the dust and dirt which was before this woman, and with His finger began writing in the ground. If you take this particular passage through to the end you will essentially find that Jesus rewrote this woman’s story, rewrote this woman’s accusation, rewrote this woman’s sentence, and rewrote that which was to be understood concerning this woman. Oh, pause for a moment and consider the fact that when Jesus wrote down on the ground, and when all those who sought to accuse and stone this woman to death had departed from her present, Jesus was left alone with this woman there in the courts of the Temple. Please don’t miss the incredible significance and importance of this, for this entire passage is about Jesus rewriting the accusation, rewriting the sentence, and ultimately rewriting the story of this woman who had been taken and caught in the act of adultery.
I absolutely love that which is found and written within this particular passage of Scripture, for what we find within it is a truly wonderful and remarkable picture of a God who is willing to rewrite our sentence, and is willing to rewrite our accusation with His own hand and with His own finger. I love how it is written in this passage that Jesus stooped down, and with His finger wrote on the ground, for it brings us face to face with the reality that with His own hand, and with His own finger Jesus singled-handily rewrote the sentence which was placed upon this woman by religion. Religion called for judgment and religion called for condemnation, however, Jesus with His own hand and with His own finger rewrote this woman’s story. What’s more, is that as you read this passage you will quickly discover that Jesus ultimately and essentially delivered this woman from the presence and company of her accusers with nothing more than one of His fingers and a simple statement concerning those who were without sin casting the first stone. How truly wonderful and remarkable it is to think about and consider the fact that Jesus could indeed and Jesus could in fact deliver this woman from her accusers, and from those who called for her condemnation and judgment with nothing more than one of His fingers as He wrote on the ground there in the courts of the Temple. Please pay close attention to this particular reality, for by doing so you will understand a God who can and is willing to rewrite your own story, and who is willing to rewrite the sentence and accusation which was raised against you. Within the his passage of Scripture we find and encounter a Jesus who is willing to get down in the midst of our dirt and dust and with His own finger rewrite the sentence against us, and in all reality, rewrite the story of our life. In all reality, I would dare say that the rewritten story of this woman’s life was being delivered from her accusers, and living a life where she no longer sinned and transgressed the commandment of the Lord. The rewritten story of this woman’s life—rewritten by the very Word which was in the beginning with God—was rewritten absent her accusers, and absent those who called for her judgment and condemnation. How truly wonderful and fantastic it is to think about and consider the fact that this woman would have her entire life rewritten by the finger of the divine Word which was in the beginning with God. THE REWRITTEN STORY OF YOUR LIFE BY THE VERY FINGER OF THE WORD OF GOD! Oh please tell me that this concept of having the story of your life rewritten by the very finger of the divine Word of God excites you and completely and utterly thrills your heart and soul. Please tell me that such a reality and such a concept brings tremendous hope, comfort, joy and encouragement to your soul, as the living Word which was in the beginning with God, and the living Word which became flesh, would with His finger rewrite the accusation and condemnation against your life, and by doing so would rewrite the story of your life.
As you continue reading the words which are found within this passage of Scripture you will quickly encounter the awesome and wonderful reality that immediately following this encounter with the woman caught and taken in the act of adultery, Jesus would emphatically proclaim and declare unto the Jews that He was the Light of the world, and that those who followed Him would not walk in darkness, but would have the light of life. Immediately following the deliverance of this woman from the company and presence of her accusers, Jesus would then declare and proclaim concerning Himself that He was the Light of the world, and that those who followed Him would not walk in darkness, but would have the light of life. What’s more, is that if you continue reading the words which are found in this passage of Scripture you will find Jesus once more speaking of the Father, and once more speaking of who He was, and where He came from. You will go on to read within this particular chapter how Jesus declared that even though He bore record of Himself, His record was true, for He knew where He came from, and where He was going. What’s more, is that Jesus would go on to speak of the Father when He emphatically declared that the Jews neither knew Him, nor knew His Father, and if they had known Him, they would have known His Father. Furthermore, Jesus would go on to speak and declare that those to whom he was speaking and addressing were from beneath, yet He Himself was from above. Even more than this, Jesus would go on to declare that those to whom he was speaking of was of this world, but that He was not of this world. By the time you come to the thirty-verse of this chapter you will find Jesus declaring that once the Son of man had been lifted up they would know that He was the One whom the prophets spoke of. In all reality, the words which we find written and contained within this passage of Scripture bring us face to face with the awesome and tremendous reality that Jesus not only knew who He was, and not only knew who His Father was, but Jesus knew where He had come from, and where He was going. Please don’t miss and please don’t ignore this awesome and incredibly reality, for to do so would be to miss out on the underlying truth concerning purpose and identity. Oh, it is absolutely necessary and imperative that we recognize and understand who we are and who the Father is, for once we recognize and understand these two central and core truths, we can and will begin to understand the purpose and destiny for our lives. Jesus continually spoke of His Father, and continually spoke of who He was in direct relation and connection to His Father—a reality which we must come face to face with within our own lives. The entire New Testament gospel of John hinges on the reality that Jesus not only knew who He was, but He also knew who His Father was, and it was that knowledge and that reality which propelled Him during His life and ministry here upon the earth. Oh we dare not and cannot miss this awesome and wonderful truth, for it has the ability to radically and dramatically change and transform our lives and to completely shift the focus and direction our lives can and should be headed.
If you read the New Testament gospel of the apostle John concerning Jesus the Christ you will encounter time and time again Jesus not only speaking concerning Himself, but also speaking concerning the Father. Within and through this particular gospel you will find Jesus speaking of and proclaiming His identity and purpose, and both in direct connection and relation to the Father. This truth must in all reality be central to our lives, for we cannot and must not seek to understand our own purpose and identity outside of and apart from the Father. We cannot and must not seek to understand our purpose within this earth without and apart from the Father who is in heaven. I absolutely love how this chapter begins and opens with the woman caught in the cat of adultery, for in this single moment of time and on this single day this woman’s entire life was dramatically changed and altered by one whose entire identity and purpose was bound and wrapped up in the Father who was in heaven. Jesus who was the Light of the world shone His light into the darkness of this woman’s adultery and immorality, and caused her to walk in light from that moment on. Oh, if there is one thing I so wish we had with in the gospels is the story after the encounter. The more I read the New Testament gospels which were written concerning Jesus the Christ, the more I can’t help but wish that we were given glimpses into what life was like for those men and women whose lives Jesus changed and transformed. In other words, what was life like after Jesus had brought healing and wholeness into your life? What was life like after Jesus delivered you from the company and presence of your accusers? What was life like after Jesus had revealed Himself unto you at the well in the town of Sychar in the region of Samaria. I would so. Love to know what one single encounter with Jesus the Christ produced within the hearts and lives of the men and women whom He spoke with, taught and brought healing, wholeness, forgiveness, and even cleansing. We know what life was like for the apostles after walking with and following Jesus the Christ for three and a half years, and we know what the life of the apostle Paul was like after encountering Jesus on the road to Damascus, but we aren’t given any clue or glimpse into what the lives of those whom Jesus touched were like within the four gospels. I wonder what the life of this woman was like after Jesus had delivered her from her accusers and had rewritten the story of her life, and had rewritten the sentence against her. We might never know this side of eternity what life was like for this woman after Jesus stooped down in the ground and rewrote her story and sentence, but we do know what our lives are like after Jesus rewrites our story and our sentence. The question I would present and pose to you is what your life will be like after Jesus rewrites your story and rewrites the sentence that was written against you?