When GRACELESS RELIGION Get in the Way

Tom Harding


John 8:1–11

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?”

They were trying to trap him into saying something they could use against him, but Jesus stooped down and wrote in the dust with his finger.

They kept demanding an answer, so he stood up again and said, “All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!” Then he stooped down again and wrote in the dust.


When the accusers heard this, they slipped away one by one, beginning with the oldest, until only Jesus was left in the middle of the crowd with the woman.

Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, “Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?” “No, Lord,” she said. And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.” 


Observation 1: Jesus leads with grace and lands with truth.


Comfort in Grace

Counsel in Truth


Observation 2: Give a mulligan and drop a stone.


2 Corinthians 5:21

For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.


One cannot behave their way into God’s grace.


There is more grace in God than sin in people.


Galatians 6:1–3 (MSG)

. . . If someone falls into sin, forgivingly restore him, saving your critical comments for yourself. You might be needing forgiveness before the day’s out. Stoop down and reach out to those who are oppressed. Share their burdens, and so complete Christ’s law. If you think you are too good for that, you are badly deceived.


Observation 3: Where he guides, he provides.


John 8:10-11

Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, “Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?” “No, Lord,” she said. And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.”


John 14:26

But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you


It is the end of our own self will and our attempts to meet the needs of the world on our own. It is the cross! 


As we die to our own will, we begin to know the Spirit’s divine power. We begin to live as true disciples of Jesus, filled with his Spirit and sharing his love.