Writing in the Dirt: The Choice Between Being Right and Being Like Jesus

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How many times have we seen a crowd of men, young and old, eager to judge – and condemn – a single woman for their own sins?

It’s just another scene from tomorrow’s headlines. In fact it’s so familiar, we don’t even notice it.

These panels of dour old men with judgment in their eyes sending down solemn pronouncements upon women have become an icon of our time.

From the Sanhedrin, to the Salem witch trials to the Taliban to grim Congressional hearings, we seem to have no shortage of men eager to claim ultimate authority over a woman’s life – or rights.

But where is the man who would stand as Christ did? The one who would challenge the bland, anonymous cowardice and say, when they, in their brief and passing moment of shame finally showed some decency and honor and refused to implicate themselves in this, or any judgment, “Did no one judge you? Neither do I”?

We can picture this dusty Biblical scenario, with men clothed in their robes and indignation, ready, even eager, to kill the symbol, object, perhaps even fantasy, of the sin they each carry.

Related: Me Neither: Jesus Draws His Line in the Sand

Public humiliation and judgment is not enough, grace is too weak, and forgiveness too limp for this group poised to murder in the name of their own faltering – and apparently threatened righteousness. They have much to hide – and protect.

This woman ‘caught in adultery’ was, of course, not caught alone, but with a man, perhaps in the crowd, or certainly, in a town this small, known by them – but either way not judged as she would be.

Which only adds to their determination to kill the witness to their own weakness.

And in their fury, they come upon Jesus.

He too, like the woman, is a living reminder of their distance from God – and their own humanity.

“What would you do?” they ask, “with this woman caught in the very act of sinning?” Hoping to judge him as well as her (John 8:6).

You can almost feel the weight of their rage bear down on his shoulders as he confronts them by not confronting them.

He bends down, reaching for the earth, finding, in some sense, a grounding for their wrath.

He draws, doodles or writes, perhaps it doesn’t matter, but he does buy time, and his seemingly idle motions, hold more of God than they have – or have probably seen before.

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The silence is tangible. But their impatience wins out – “Well, what would you do?”

Jesus rises, and like a student who knows more than the teacher, agrees with them – almost.

Yes, he seems to say, God’s justice is fierce, but it is also fair; only one who has not sinned, only one who is innocent can judge the guilty.

He bends down again, reaching as if for some sanity or sense of decency somewhere on the face of the earth.

We can picture these men, pulsing with justice and self-justification as their pride is deflated and they see the wilted woman as wronged, more than wrong and themselves more like murderers than the hand of a merciful God they thought they followed.

Also by Morf: Cain’s Warning – Sandy Hook, Guns and Being Pro-Life

And this simple man, in his dust and silence has more to say of God’s presence than their slogans and menacing threats.

The crowd drifts off, from oldest to youngest, until Jesus stands again, almost surprised, as he sees no one there – except the woman.

“Where are those so eager to judge you?” he seems to ask; was there no one ‘good enough’?

“No one” she says (John 8:11).

“Go and sin no more” Jesus tells her, knowing that it is mercy, not judgment, that keeps every one of us from sin.

In this New Testament story, we, as always it seems, have before us the choice between being right, or even being religious, and being like Jesus.

I’ll take Jesus every time.


Morf Morford considers himself a free-range Christian who is convinced that God expects far more of us than we can ever imagine, but somehow thinks God knows more than we do. To pay his bills, he’s been a teacher for adults (including those in his local county jail) in a variety of setting including Tribal colleges, vocational schools and at the university level in the People’s Republic of China. Within an academic context, he also writes an irreverent ESL blog and for the Burnside Writers Collective. As he’s getting older, he finds himself less tolerant of pettiness and dairy products.

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About the Author

Morf Morford

Morf MorfordMorf Morford considers himself a free-range Christian who is convinced that God expects far more of us than we can ever imagine, but somehow thinks God knows more than we do. To pay his bills, he’s been a teacher for adults (including those in his local county jail) in a variety of setting including Tribal colleges, vocational schools and at the university level in the People’s Republic of China. Within an academic context, he also writes an irreverent ESL blog and for the Burnside Writers Collective. As he’s getting older, he finds himself less tolerant of pettiness and dairy products.View all posts by Morf Morford →

  • otrotierra

    Many thanks to Morf and RedLetterChristians for putting Jesus first, no matter how unpopular it is to do so.

  • http://tellmewhytheworldisweird.blogspot.com/ perfectnumber628

    Amen to this.

  • http://twitter.com/SecreteDisciple Secrete Disciple

    Well Said!

  • Frank

    Jesus: if you love me you will obey my commandments.

    Go and sin no more.

    • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

      But likewise, “let the one who is without sin cast the first stone.” Don’t focus so much on Jesus’ words to the woman that you forget the words to the condemners.

      • Frank

        I am focusing on the words of Jesus. Go and sin no more. That part conveniently gets ignored in these discussions.

        The condemners simple forgot that they also were sinners. Greta reminder. NOW go and sin no more.

        • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

          You see the “go and sin no more” regularly ignored. That may be true in the discussions you are a part of. On the other hand, I regularly see “let the one who is without sin cast the first stone” ignored. Both are the words of Jesus. We cannot forget either. We must also be mindful of which words are addressed to us.

          • Benjamin

            Where do you see people still stoning? Or do you mean some sort of bullying? Carefully pointing out when your neighbor is living in sin is not casting stones. We must ALSO be careful not to become like Jonah, afraid to share God’s word because it doesn’t fit in with the teachings of certain groups of people. I think we are all aware of the increasing anti-Christian leanings in western countries, (which have always been here in different forms such as slavery and racism.) I must wonder if we moved to a different issue, one less controversial currently, like racism, if you would be so cautious as you are here. If the issue being discussed is abortion, then I don’t think it is by any means a little issue to be ignored. To act like bringing it up is “insulting women’s rights” and “casting stones” in uncalled for.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            You’re getting a lot out of a little, Benjamin. I never said anything about “insulting women’s rights.” I never equated sharing Gods word with condemning others. I’d be curious to know what arguments you’ve had that you are now projecting here.

            But I should also point out that your interpretation of Jonah doesn’t hold up to the Biblical narrative. Jonah himself makes it clear that he didn’t want to go to Nineveh because he didn’t want to give them a chance to repent and be saved. That’s very different from being afraid of preaching something counter to a group’s teachings.

        • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.olson.522 Daniel Olson

          And did she go and sin no more? I think we all know the answer to that. Yet Jesus being the representation of God could say no less. He had to know that this was a request that she could not possibly meet. So Frank…. I say to you… go and sin no more. and let me know how that goes for you.

      • Benjamin

        I don’t think Frank ever cast a stone. And yes, I think by stoning Jesus was referring to physical punishment and not to removing the dirt from your brothers eye, which is clearly allowed after self-examination.

        • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

          If, after self-examination, your eye is dirt-free, then yes, remove the speck from your neighbor’s eye. But who among us will, after true self-examination, find himself or herself dirt-free?

          • Benjamin

            Well then, according to your own viewpoint you shouldn’t have criticized Franks behavior, correct? And once again, do you think any of the criticism this site has made of the behavior of public figures is correct? Stop treating sexual morality has an untouchable issue.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            I’ll say it again – you’re reading much more into this than I’m putting into it.

          • Benjamin

            So you weren’t criticizing Frank for making his statement?

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            (a) I was reframing Scripture into its proper context.
            (b) My response was meant to refer specifically to your comments on sexual morality.

          • Benjamin

            Was Frank not referring to scripture in its proper context?

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            That would be the reason for me to correct it, yes.

          • Benjamin

            Does the scripture “sin no more” not mean to stop sinning when put in more full context?

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            *sigh* I feel as though you are being intentionally difficult. I have already addressed that. Go and actually read what I’ve written.

          • Benjamin

            I am being “intentionally difficult” because I do not like the fact that when people on this website stand up against sins that are popular, they are often judged by you as being “judgmental” and “negative.”: These are serious issues. Plenty of people on this site are willing to stand up to other sins, but not certain key sins that they do not like to acknowledge. Whether you are one of such a group I do not know. There is little difference the Church will make if it does not stand firmly against issues when pushed and shoved.

          • Benjamin

            I should not have used the words “by you”, as I hardly know you, but I feel as if certain groups do this.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            I am glad you corrected yourself there, because I was about to ask you to point to where I have done this. Instead, I would kindly ask you to not project this onto me, and instead to confront the people who are “defending popular sins,” as you say.

          • Benjamin

            I was probably too angry. Still, I think sin need to be spoken against

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            Yes, sin needs to be spoken against. However, it seems to me that the overwhelming majority of times Jesus spoke about or dealt with sin, the focus was on dealing with your own sin – the Pharisees then and Christians today were/are far too willing to deflect attention away from our own sins by highlighting the sins of others. And that is why, for every person that focuses their attention on “go now and sin no more,” I do my best to refocus attention to “let the one who is without sin cast the first stone.” It’s because, although we like to think that we’re playing the role of the woman, we have actually cast ourselves in the role of the men. Jesus calls each and every one of us to repentance. Jesus does not call us to play judge and jury. That’s His job.

          • Frank

            Stop judging by mere appearances, but instead judge correctly. John 7:24

            What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? God will judge those outside. “Expel the wicked person from among you. 1 Corinthians 5:12-13

            So we are to judge but do it correctly.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            Jesus said to them, “I did one miracle, and you are all amazed. Yet, because Moses gave you circumcision (though actually it did not come from Moses, but from the patriarchs), you circumcise a boy on the Sabbath. Now if a boy can be circumcised on the Sabbath so that the law of Moses may not be broken, why are you angry with me for healing a man’s whole body on the Sabbath? Stop judging by mere appearances, but instead judge correctly.” John 7:21-24

            The very fact that you have lawsuits among you means you have been completely defeated already. Why not rather be wronged? Why not rather be cheated? Instead, you yourselves cheat and do wrong, and you do this to your brothers and sisters. 1 Corinthians 6:7-8

            Context is almost always helpful. Singular verses taken out of context are rarely helpful. The John passage says “judge” but does not mean judgment. The 1 Corinthians passage is a condemnation of taking believers to court instead of working out problems within the Church.

          • Frank

            The point is judgement within the Church is needed, necessary and commanded.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            A point that I am not contesting – you will note that I am judging when I say that many within the Church prefer to point to the sins of others as a way of ignoring their own sins.

          • Frank

            Then we agree however anytime a sin gets pointed out someone automatically assumes that the person has not dealt with their own sins.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            Probably because it’s a very rare thing for someone who has reached Christian perfection to focus on the sins of another.

          • Frank

            That’s a impossible standard and not one that Jesus sets. You yourself said that judging can be appropriate and that you yourself made a judgement. Are you saying that you are perfect? Of course not so perfection or being without sin is not a prerequisite for rightful judging.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            “Be perfect, therefore, as your Father in heaven is perfect.” Besides, it’s your standard – you’re the one who said that a prerequisite for judging was having dealt with one’s sins. If one is imperfect, one still has sins to deal with.

          • Frank

            Stop with your circular argument and at least admit that you admitted that judging can be appropriate.

            Judging is appropriate under the right conditions. You know it, I know it.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            Tell you what – I’ll stop poking holes in your logic when you stop arguing against things I never said and attributing them to me. Deal?

          • Frank

            When you poke a hole in my logic I will let you know so you won’t do it again.

            Read what you posted.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            I did. And reread it. And after reading and rereading, all I saw was more of me trying to respond to your logic and you responding to things that nobody has said. Perhaps you’d like to take your own advice, and reread the conversation as well?

          • Frank

            I did.

            Me:
            The point is judgement within the Church is needed, necessary and commanded.

            You:
            A point that I am not contesting – you will note that I am judging when I say that many within the Church prefer to point to the sins of others as a way of ignoring their own sins.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            Good. Now show me where the circular logic is – because all you’ve shown me so far is a place where I pointed out that you were putting words into my mouth.

          • Frank

            I said circular arguement and my post shows I did not put words into your mouth.

            Do you like to argue for arguments sake or what? Jeesh its kinda foolish.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            I could ask the same of you, Frank, since you keep demanding that I agree with you even after I pointed out that I didn’t disagree.

          • Frank

            I don’t need you to agree with me but if you are saying now that you don’t believe judgement is ever justified than you are contradicting yourself as I have shown. Which is fine you get to do that but don’t accuse me of something that I didn’t do.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            No, Frank, the moon is not made of cheese. You can believe it if you want, but you’re wrong.

            …I am guessing you are (a) confused, and (b) indignant that I’m pretending you said something you obviously never said. SO STOP DOING IT TO ME.

          • Frank

            So explain what your response means:

            Me:
            The point is judgement within the Church is needed, necessary and commanded.

            You:
            A point that I am not contesting – you will note that I am judging when I say that many within the Church prefer to point to the sins of others as a way of ignoring their own sins.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            It means that I HAVEN’T DISAGREED WITH YOU. Why are you having so much trouble grasping that, Frank? Or are you just so eager for an ego boost that you need to see it written again? Alternatively, maybe you are just incapable of understanding how someone can agree with you but focus on a different aspect of the situation, and so whenever someone does focus on a different aspect, you assume that they completely disagree with you. In that case, I say again, STOP IT.

          • Frank

            You are a piece of work that’s for sure.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            Sorry that I get worked up when people argue at me for things I didn’t say…

          • Benjamin

            Frank, he says he agrees with you. He was just adding another part of scripture. This was clearly a misunderstanding. Though I’m not sure how he is interpreting that other verse.

          • Frank

            Yes I see that. It easy to have a misunderstanding on a message board.

            That being said I also thinks he just likes to argue. Not a bad thing but certainly a frustrating one.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            Takes two to tango, Frank.

          • Frank

            Was never that good at dancing.

          • Benjamin

            I don’t think calling something a sin is the same as judging somebody.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            You’re putting words in my mouth again, Benjamin. Must I do likewise before you’ll stop?

          • bluecenterlight

            Because people who feel the weight of their own wretchedness find it difficult to lift their finger in accusation. He who has been forgiven much, loves much.

          • Frank

            There is nothing loving about supporting, condoning, affirming or remaining silent about sinful behavior.

          • bluecenterlight

            Very true. But there are two camps. The Pharisee’s were very concerned about strict adherence to God’s law. They were doing exactly what God had commanded them to do. But at some point they became so focused on living up to the standard that they forgot the God of the standard. The God of the standard put rules in place out of love and the desire to protect us from harming ourselves, it is a difficult and sometimes impossible standard, that we all fall short of. Therefore we all rely on his grace. The standard, without grace, leaves us all casting about in depression for constantly disappointing God, or else makes us hide our sin and pretend it is not there. If pointing out sin does not lead to reconciliation between God and the sinner, then it is pointless. We are called to be skilled workers, shining the light on peoples paths leading them in the direction of Jesus. That will look different in different situations. Sometimes it is harsh rebuke, and sometimes God will lead you to not even mention a certain sin to someone you are ministering to because there are other areas of their life He is focused on. If you beat people over the head with everything they do wrong, and never lift them up with God’s grace, chances are they will walk away discouraged. It takes the spirit to lead us in such matters.

          • bluecenterlight

            “What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church?” This is the key difference between the liberal and conservative view of scripture. The liberal view is that sin should be dealt with in the context of relationship. If I am invested in someones life, if they are a part of a Christ centered community, we have a responsibility to hold each other to high moral standards. To challenge and encourage each other to grow in the Lord and not allow ourselves to succumb to the lax standards of the world. The problem I see with the conservatives among us is that they have taken a standard that we sign up for when we decide to follow Christ, and try to make it a standard that everyone in society should live by. This is overstepping. The world is allowed to sin. We do not get to dictate to them proper behavior, following God’s moral standards is something they can chose or not chose, we never dictate.

          • Frank

            It’s a standard we should support. We should never support sin in or out of the church.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            Doesn’t that mean you’re ignoring the very Scripture you quoted?

            “What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? God will judge those outside.”

          • bluecenterlight

            Then we should push to outlaw divorce. We should do away with the legal system, because you do not take a brother to court. Adultery should annul your marriage. The ownership of two coats should be outlawed. Oaths, banned. Prohibition re established. Mandatory church giving, maybe like a tax. The catholic church tried to dictate daily life to everyone based on religious standards. I think we can all agree that didn’t lead to a very good place. There is a difference between standing and forcing. Christianity is a choice. In a free country, you have the right to not have Christian beliefs forced on you by law.

          • Benjamin

            Jesus did not come to abolish the law.
            What do you mean when you say a “free” country? It sounds like you’re a nationalist.
            This is of grave concern. Where in the Bible is the importance of a “free country,” and once again, where is the line drawn? From what I can tell, most people on this site stand up to sinful wealthy men, but the moment it comes to sexual morality, it seems you change everything.

          • Benjamin

            Not that a “free country” is anti-biblical, but I would like to know what your understanding of a “free country” is.

          • bluecenterlight

            A free country is where men are allowed to chose the direction for their life. They are allowed to believe what they want, say what they want. It has it’s roots in Martin Luther’s thesis to the catholic church. I will follow God according to my own conscience and it will not be dictated to me by an institution. This experiment is rare throughout history, and will probably go away. We will, if we believe scripture, be told what to believe at some point. But as long as it lasts I will stand for anyone’s right to believe what they want even if I do not agree with it. The day you become comfortable with forcing your beliefs on others is one day closer to them forcing their beliefs on you. That rarely works out good for Christians. So you are concerned about sexual immorality in this country, you should be it is rampant. I assume that the laws you will be proposing will address your own sexual immorality? Outlawing bikini’s, burkas do a knock up job at curbing male lust, plus what a boon to the garment industry. No more R rated movies. Vasoline is right out, in fact any sort of lotion, maybe we can mandate pumice be added to all lotion, ouch! That should solve it.

          • Benjamin

            Should men in a free country be allowed to steal? If not, reword your definition. Your definition would say that a free country should not have laws against stealing, (the definition you gave.) Definitions are important. I understand perfectly well all of this stereotypical view; “Freedom! So-and-So! The such-and-such event! Liberty!” I want a definition. What is a free country? BE LITERAL.

          • bluecenterlight

            No one should be free to harm another person, that violates the freedom of others. We are talking about the ability to believe what you want. But, if you require me to have have another definition ok fine, how about a civilized country. I will insert civilized for free.

          • bluecenterlight

            Rest assured I am far from a nationalist. I believe (and think I’m on God’s side of the matter ) in free will. A nation forced into outward displays of righteousness is not righteousness at all, but fraud. As prohibition really didn’t create an oasis of righteousness, legislating sexual morality isn’t really going to accomplish anything. Although it might make you feel more comfortable. We change the world by changing hearts. If a theocracy sounds more to your liking I think you should study the results, they are not good. For the record I think the wealthy are just as lost as anyone else and in need of Jesus.

          • Benjamin

            The concept of free will does not much relate to the concept of a “free country.” Free will is a theological concept that God gave us the ability to choose to accept him. Making a law saying not to steal does not deny the concept of free will. Does this not come down to sexual morality? I never said we needed a “theocracy”. I’m using this to make you question your idea of a “free country.”

          • bluecenterlight

            Whether or not this is a free country (which I’m still not quite sure what you are getting at) is completely irrelevant. If I live in a communist country, or under a harsh dictator, or in a free country it is still never acceptable to force others to live according to Christian morals. If you believe that you have a scriptural mandate to force non believers to act like Christians then you are going to have to enlighten me, because I have seen no such scripture.

          • Benjamin

            Not a nationalist? I’m not saying you are aware of it. Now that would be another problem altogether if you were a nationalist even as you knew it. We have all become too much nationalists though.
            It isn’t something someone is aware of. It is like those people who go around saying they are “independent thinkers.” Aren’t we all! As if some man goes around saying “I’m a nationalist who believes anything I’m told by the government.” The point is that allegiance to irrational ideas invades our minds through the media and false education without us realizing it. It affects almost all of us to some extent. We go around using words like “freedom,” a moment later saying, “there should be a law against that.” You can say you want “freedom” to an extent, but then that extent should be clear as should the reason for drawing the line.

          • bluecenterlight

            I agree with your premise. The only true objectivity is subjectivity rendered conscience of itself. We all have agendas, we are all colored by our past experiences. The reason why I say I’m not a nationalist is that over the last couple of years God has convicted me of it, and it is something that I intentionally try to root out. I am a child of the kingdom, that is where my allegiance lies. I have had to repent for taking my identity from being an American. When I talk of freedom it is in the context of gratitude. There are many places that I would not be able to sit here and speak my mind without consequences. I am grateful mostly because I know it can easily be taken away. I am not one who would fight or kill for freedom, freedom can become a god like anything else. I simply praise God that I have been blessed to live in a place where I can speak freely, and worship the God of my choosing as I see fit.

          • Benjamin

            Well, Frank, it looks like they disagree that we should never support sin. I think this is where we leave and pray they change their minds.

          • bluecenterlight

            It sounds like you are taking your proverbial ball and going home. Just to clarify my stance before that happens, sin is damaging. To not take sin seriously, is in essence a decision to not love people. I can only look to my own sin and see the path of destruction it has caused. If we love people we have to address it. Where we differ is in tactics. For me addressing sin in the voting booth is silly, it’s like putting a sponge bob bandaid on a severed jugular. I use to be a bible thumper. My early days of ministry I was an idealistic young lad, putting my finger in everyone’s chest telling them to get right with the Lord! The only problem was people were just put off, they might have felt the conviction of sin, but that’s where it ended. As I have matured I have learned it is the Holy Spirits job to convict of sin, it turns out He is pretty good at it. When you address sin in terms of me/ I, being honest about your own sin, people are very willing to admit their sin and their need for a savior. When you talk about sin in terms of “you” people feel judged and immediately become defensive and shut you down. The truth is that sin is a very important matter that we have to take seriously, we need to be skilled workmen. Are we trying to win the lost for the Lord, or are we trying to be on the right side of a standard? If we are going to win the lost it takes gentleness and grace. The same gentleness and grace the Lord shows us in all our weakness.

          • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.olson.522 Daniel Olson

            I agree…. but I believe we must be even more intimate in our relationships Correcting those around us whom we have NOT established submission to/from is counterproductive.
            IT
            DOES
            NO
            GOOD.

  • http://www.facebook.com/philip.zylstra Philip Zylstra

    Thanks Morf, a very relevant message as is evidenced by the automatic response of so many. Without fail whenever I’ve heard this message preached there has always been at least someone that has ignored all of the implications of the story for themselves and focused on the final words “go and sin no more”. As if Jesus’ authority to say that did not come from the grace that he had just given her; as if it wasn’t his blessing words of “go and be free”. It’s God’s kindness that leads us to repentance, not the disapproval of our ever present Pharisees.

    • Frank

      As long as we understand it wasn’t “Go and continue to live your life as you have been.” That’s not repentance. Repentance is a “turning away.”

  • Pete

    Trying to connect the dots between “grim Congressional hearings” that “claim ultimate authority over a woman’s life” and Jesus’ “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.” I’m not sure what congressional hearings are being referenced here – and maybe I’m wrong – but the implication to me seems to say that being like Jesus means supporting a woman’s right to her body, aka, abortion.

    I agree with Morford that it’s more important to be like Jesus than to insist on being right. But at the same time, I’m not sure if I’d be as bold as him and say that Christ-likeness requires taking a pro-choice stance.

    • 22044

      I’m not sure what Congressional hearings he’s referring to.

    • SamHamilton

      I don’t know why Morf chose to use the men vs. single woman angle. He seems to have a specific situation in mind or a specific sin in mind. Yet this passage can be applied to anyone, not just men condemning a single woman. I don’t know why he chose to frame it the way he did or that he is necessarily talking about abortion.

      People seem to focus on one half of the story and ignore the other half. And then others complain that their preferred half is being ignored. Why can’t we all admit that both halves (both the “be careful when you judge” and the “sin no more” parts) are equally important.

      If people truly believe that the first part of this story means that we should never speak ill of someone else’s sin (i.e. judge them), then let them so say frankly. I seem to remember quite a few bloggers on this website who speak ill of other people’s sin. Or is there a difference between judging and condemning and speaking out against, etc? What’s the difference…

  • Jonathan Starkey

    I like Morf more, and more… at first I wasn’t used to his writing style. One sentence statements, but that’s how I process and write. It’s like preaching writing. Little streams of conscience statements.

    On the subject I was just reading this Chapter today. I wonder what the tie in between the Pharisees earlier in the chapter accusing Jesus about testifying about himself, and then turn turn the table around on them in this story.

    The testimony of one can be just and true, and the testimony of the group can be wicked and false.

    The whole argument about murder and your Father is not Abraham because you are full of murder. They wanted to kill Jesus, and then they brought a woman before Jesus who they wanted to murder.

    Then the importance of “the finger of God” in scripture. The “finger of God” wrote the ten commandments.

    There is something so deep about this passage, that I want God to open my eyes on.

    Thanks Morf.

    Jonathan

    • Jonathan Starkey

      Breaking 2 Commandments:
      Though Shalt not give false testimony
      Though shalt not murder

      Reminds me of the Book of Susanna in the Apocrypha. Everyone should read it.
      —-
      In short you have these 2 religious leaders who were coveting this princess Susanna, and they would sneak into the garden and watch her bathe. One day they surprisingly bumped into each other in the garden. Neither one knew the the was also in lust. So they formed a plan to force her to have sex with them. When the attendants left they cornered Susanna, and they said if you do not sleep with us we will testify against you that we caught you in adultery, for our testimony is weightier than yours. And you will be stoned. Susanna said something like, I am a daughter of God, and I would rather die than to break his commandments with you. She screamed, people rushed in and the leaders said they caught her in adultery. And the young man she was with fled out of the back of the garden. The formed a false testimony because of their lust.

      In court was Daniel and the court was about to make a judgement against Susanna to be put to death because of the testimony of the leaders. Daniel sensed something was off, and he asked the leaders to step out of the room one at a time. He asked each separately which tree was the couple under that you caught in the act of adultery. They each said a different tree. So they were caught in they’re lie. Susanna was set free and the leaders were in trouble maybe they were put to death.

      It’s a great story.

      Reminds me of the story in John. Lust, false testimony, murder… entrapment

  • Jonathan Starkey

    The Pharisees were practicing idolatry (adultery), and brought a woman before Jesus caught in adultery.

  • http://www.facebook.com/peter.fodera.1 Peter Fodera

    Despite the Far Left, Pro-Filicide, Obama-Bot Lamestream Media’s refusal to report upon the Horror Show that is the Kermit Gosnell Trial, a few Godly Representatives stood up on the floor of the House and did so!

    Several members of Congress on Thursday (4/11/13) afternoon took to the floor of the House of representatives to expose the HORRORS abortion practitioner Kermit Gosnell has committed and to decry the lack of media attention to them.

    Congressman Marlin Stutzman, an Indiana Republican, was one of the members who spoke on the House floor this afternoon to call attention to the horrific crimes Gosnell engaged in at his Philadelphia, Pennsylvania abortion clinic.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    One of the myriad problems with the euphemistic ProChoice (Filicide) argument is that women’s bodies do NOT come with 2 heads, 2 hearts, 4 legs and 4 arms.

    This means there are TWO bodies; two distinct homo sapiens formed in the Imago Dei, with one living ~ 0.93% of his/her life inside the uterus of the other, and the other 99.07% outside the womb, just like other lesser animals that receive intra-uterine and intra-egg protections that God’s homo sapiens do not currently but which did for millennia, and which theologically, morally, ethically and biologically SHOULD again.

    In fact, since Science has already declared unequivocally that a new human life BEGINS @ fertilization, it would only take the courage of Congress & POTUS to write and sign, respectively, a new law that re-defines natural human life as beginning and a new 14th amendment protected “person” as forming, when Science says it does: at fertilization to cause Roe to collapse and babies to be saved once again. Or, bypassing POTUS and the Judiciary altogether for either 2/3 majorities of both chambers of Congress PLUS 38 States (75%), or bypassing Congress, POTUS and the Judiciary altogether for any 38 States (75%) during a Constitutional Congress to ratify the same as a Constitutional Amendment.

    lifenews dot com/2013/04/11/ congressman-gosnell-an-abortion-predator-who-must-be-exposed/

  • http://www.facebook.com/peter.fodera.1 Peter Fodera

    The quintessential moral and legal lessons we should learn from this trial — for those who have NOT YET learned them — is that it is evil, sinful and MUST AGAIN BECOME ILLEGAL to kill any human person at any stage of his/her life.

    God the Creator saw fit to have His creatures, homo sapiens made in the Imago Dei, spend the first ~0.93% of OUR — YOURS and MINE — lives in utero, and the other ~99.07% of our lives ex utero.

    Science will tell you that God created no other biological purpose for a woman’s uterus other than to provide nurture and sacrosanct succor to His creatures, her babies, for ~ 9 months out of an average life expectancy of ~ 960 months.

    Abortion is Filicide and at its core is nothing more than a Garden of Eden like attempt to “be like God,” to hold the keys of Life & Death which ONLY belong in God’s hands and not ours, especially when it comes to God’s most small, precious, vulnerable, temporarily voiceless, and relatively INNOCENT babies.

    The ambiguously Sad & Good news is that completely apart from the Judiciary Congress can and SHOULD create, and POTUS sign, a LAW that states ALL babies, from the moment of fertilization, are not only homo sapiens but “persons” warranting the same 14th amendment protections that slightly older by only a few months babies warrant as is being proven in the Gosnell trial.

    Barring this, and bypassing BOTH POTUS and the Judiciary altogether, 2/3 of both chambers of Congress can pass a Constitutional Amendment and send it to the States where only 38 States (75%) are needed for ratification to become part of the Uninfringeable Constitution of the United States of America.

    OR, bypassing all three branches of the Federal Government, the States can conduct another Constitutional Convention and on their own with the ratification of only 38 States’ Legislatures (75%) ratify an amendment to the Constitution codifying the same.

    So many ways to protect our precious and innocent in utero babies from Filicide, Infanticide and Homicide like Scott Peterson was convicted of and soon, God willing, Kermit Gosnell, too.

    facebook dot com/ photo.php?fbid=171638492990685&set=a.102781546543047.5311.100004336054487&type=1&theater

  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.richards.313 Joe Richards

    The feckless logic behind the Pro Choice / Reproductive Justice movement is completely ad hoc, capricious, subjective, gestationally sexist, and therefore completely untenable. It is certainly no basis for a law that deals with Life & Death.

    A civil, just society can NOT make nor justly enforce laws that are inherently ad hoc and capricious. The quintessential building block, indeed the cornerstone of our Constitutional Rule of Law REPUBLIC, personified by a blindfolded Lady Justice holding a scale in her hands, is that ALL LAWS apply equally to every person without regard to race, color, creed, gender, gestational status or age (above consent).

    Pro Choice completely obliterates this first principle.

    Science, orthodox Judeo-Christian Theology, Humane Ethics, and non-atheistic Philosophy all state unequivocally that a new human life begins at fertilization. ONLY THE CURRENT law that goes by the pseudonymical Roe v Wade, wrongly decided based upon some of the worse jurisprudence in our nation’s history (confessed to by several 21st-century SCOTUS Justices), 40 years behind current Science, still regards in utero babies as “non-persons” and therefore not protected under the 14th amendment. This is reminiscent of the way the U.S. regarded Black slaves — as de facto non-persons or at least no more than three fifths of a person each — for the first 76 years of our history. No wonder they were enslaved, whipped, beaten, sold like mere chattel, and killed with impunity.

    Is that how Pro Choice views in utero babies, as non-person chattel deserving of no better than enslavement, whipping, beating, auctioning, dismemberment and finally death? It happens 1,211,000 times per year every year for the last 40 years.

    SCOTUS in 1973 admitted that Science, Theology and Philosophy should influence their juridical decision regarding the moment when a non-human becomes a human person, but then panned all three disciplines, noting that since they didn’t all three agree SCOTUS therefore needn’t decide when a 100% HUMAN DNA in utero baby becomes a legal person . . . and then arbitrarily assigned a point in time for this miracle to occur as coinciding with birth; presumably that existential moment when a baby completely exits his/her mother’s vagina. Whether or not s/he had to have the umbilical cord cut and/or take a 1st breath to become a FULLY HUMAN person warranting Constitutional protection is NOT clear.

    But neither SCOTUS nor any Pro Choice person has ever explained how “personhood” is conferred merely by fully exiting a vagina (or in the rarer case of a C-section, fully clearing the belly). Biologically and Theologically there is no discernible nor non-discernible fundamental difference between a baby 5 seconds before fully emerging from a vagina and 5 seconds after fully exiting. NONE AT ALL. If personhood is not something that can be observed, measured or otherwise discerned than it has either magical properties or resides at the level of deep sub-atomic space that our most powerful microscopes and atom smashers can still NOT detect.

    Who or what confers this personhood? If a 40 week old fully formed baby is NOT a person 1 second before s/he fully exits the vagina but is 1 second immediately thereafter Who or What conferred that personhood? The mother’s vagina? God? Buddha? And at what precise moment down to the 1/1000th of a second did it occur? How do we know?

    Neither Science, Theology, Philosophy, Ethics nor an Abortion doctor can objectively answer these questions. But the law somehow is certain (or feigns it), and wants us to be certain, that whereas it is a heinous homicidal crime to kill a just exited from the vagina baby, whether 22 weeks old, 32 weeks old, or 42 weeks old, it is no crime at all to kill that same baby so long as s/he has NOT fully (though mostly is OK) exited the vagina.

    Why is it a heinous 1st-degree murder for a mother and her doctor to kill a 22-week old baby just fully exited from her vagina but NOT a crime to kill a 28-week old baby still residing at least partially in utero?

    THINK: It is as if the law — not Science, Theology, Philosophy or Ethics — has conferred God-like power to create a new human being to pregnant women’s vaginas, which alone can impute full humanity and legal personhood.

    BUT STOP, THINK AGAIN: The ugly gestational sexist bias of the law reared its very ugly head with the conviction of Scott Peterson for DOUBLE HOMICIDE: of his post-born wife Laci and his PRE-BORN son Connor. The ONLY way Scott (and less famously known biological fathers) could have been convicted of a 2nd homicide is IF his unborn son was regarded by the law as a fully human PERSON protected under the 14th amendment. Had Laci killed Connor she would have been able to do so with full legal immunity. But the impunity the law would have granted to Laci it refused to give to Scott: ugly, biased gestational bias.

    Have you heard of the Unborn Victims of Violence Act of 2004? More gestatational sexist bias at the federal level. “(Public Law 108-212) is a United States law which recognizes a child in utero as a LEGAL VICTIM, if he or she is injured or killed during the commission of any of over 60 listed federal crimes of violence. The law defines “child in utero” as “a member of the species Homo sapiens, at any stage of development, who is carried in the womb.”

    en dot wikipedia dot org/wiki/Unborn_Victims_of_Violence_Act

    Is it any wonder that our horrific, gestationally sexist jurisprudence came about as a result of seven (7) pussy-whooped men (two White men wisely and morally vociferously dissented), six White and one Black. Their outdated, 40-year old juridical decision is a guilt-ridden testosterone manifesto that pays homage to estrogen and the power of vaginas that have driven men mad, crazy, to drink & drugs, and broke for millennia.

    Lust for vaginas, guilt over how cruelly some men have behaved toward women with vaginas, and a sincere but sincerely wrong desire to make reparations is NO BASIS FOR LAW-MAKING WHEN IT COMES TO THE LIFE AND DEATH OF OUR MOST PRECIOUS, MOST VULNERABLE, AND LEAST ABLE TO PROTECT AND SPEAK FOR THEMSELVES BABIES; in utero.

    Anyone who has never endured an abortion, and is entirely unwilling to endure one — or the lethal equivalent — now, should ever have the hypocritical gall to enact a law that confines in utero human babies to horrific deaths, arguably the 2nd most heinous only to Christ’s crucifixion.

  • http://www.facebook.com/DeepNarcosis William J. Green

    The only thing that holds up the Collapse of Roe v Wade is the question of “When does a fully human homo sapien become a ‘person’?” Science told us at Fertilization. Pro-Abortionists disagree.

    The only thing that holds up the Collapse of Roe v Wade is the question of “When does a fully human homo sapien become a ‘person’?” Science told us at Fertilization. Pro-Abortionists disagree.

    Here’s one possible solution: Instead of a litmus test for when a 100% Human DNA homo sapien becomes a person, let’s decide when a person becomes a HUMANE HUMAN. Show everyone a video depicting a 10 week abortion and a 24 week abortion. Everyone who recoils in horror and calls it “gross” and INHUMANE is a HUMANE human being; everyone who ignores the gore and slaughter and calls for Abortion on Demand is INHUMAN and INHUMANE. Then let ONLY the HUMANE HUMANS decide when a human being becomes a “person.”

    Problem Solved: Roe Collapses and ~1,211,016 babies & moms lives will be saved every year.

  • Ephirius

    Jesus WAS right. Are you suggesting otherwise?

  • http://about.me/jonathan.boegl JS Boegl

    So Morf – how many children have you adopted?
    How many unwed mothers have you counseled to spare their unborn children with the love and wisdom Jesus gives the adulteress? “Go and sin no more!”?
    Are you any different than the fictional stereotype you’re castigating; sanctimoniously casting judgment on those who are lovingly intervening in the crisis of the human predicament?

  • wjgreen314

    Last Night Potty-mouths Sarah Silverman? and The Daily Show With John Stewart?’s @lizzwinstead hosted a LIVE Texas Telethon to raise money for . . .

    1) The Philippines survivors of Typhoon Haiyan? NO!

    2) The survivors of the tornadoes in the upper midwest? NO!

    3) The 5,200,000 Americans who lost their health care due to Obamacare? NO!

    4) #Prochoice Texas women’s heinous acts of FILICIDE WITH IMPUNITY? YES!

    And some of the actresses from Orange is the New Black appeared!

    I prophesy that the appearance of the women who depict convicts dressed in orange and drab prison jumpsuits at a telethon to raise money for abortion is God’s way of presaging — portending — the day soon when women — just like their male counterparts — go to prison for killing their own gestating babies in utero.

    It was good to see women dressed in garb indicative of the heinous crimes they commit.

    Only time will tell if my prophesy is true or not. I’m praying it turns out to be very true!

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