Wounded women so loved by Jesus. In John 8, we find the adulterous woman. Imagine living in a time when women were considered “less than” men and treated as property. During this Mediterranean world time, women could not vote, and they could not seek justice in the courts. A woman caught in adultery did not stand a chance.
When Jesus returned from his travels where He encountered division and unbelief in who He claimed to be (the Messiah), he went to go the Temple. A large mob of Pharisees and religious teachers listened to Him as He taught, and trouble brewed as the Pharisees brought in a woman who was caught in adultery and they placed her in front of everyone. Jesus knew the Jewish Law stated that BOTH adulterous parties could get themselves stoned, but it was only the shattered woman who they placed in front of Him.
Imagine how humiliated this woman must have felt as she awaited condemnation from her accusers without protection. Was she trembling?
Jesus knew that the Pharisees were trying to snare Him, and He knew their strategy of getting Him to adhere to the Jewish law, which would result in the adulterous woman being stoned. Yet the Roman law did not permit Jews to execute anyone. A no-win situation.
Understanding the ambush that Jesus had found Himself entangled in, He shifted His focus to the one needed Him the most: the wounded woman shamed by the crowd because she sinned. As Jesus saw her humiliation, terror, and shame, he scribbled in the sand and afterwards said, “…let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!” Then He wrote in the sand a second time. Don’t we wish we could know what He wrote! Whatever it was, the accusers stopped and left!
Left on the scene: the adulterous woman and her Savior. Jesus saw her, so loved her unconditionally, and made a way out for her. She must have felt overwhelmed by His love and rescue, and experienced being so loved by Jesus. Possibly a love that she had been searching for all along!
During this month that leads to Lent, let us contemplate:
- The difference that being so loved by God has made in our lives. If you have a story to share with your sisters in Christ, please do!
- There are wounded women all around us who cannot wait to be so loved by God. Ask God to show you where and who they are.
- Who is God calling you to love just like Jesus did with the adulterous woman?
Northeast Field & Leadership Development Director