Drawing the Line and Scratching the Surface

I think this is one of the coolest stories in the Bible. I’ve always wondered why and what Jesus was drawing in the dirt. He actually did it twice so there must be some significance to it. The Bible passage is not clear on either one. Well, I think I’ve figured it out. This is probably poor theology but follow me on this:

John 8:3-11 NIV

3The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the group 4and said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. 5In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?” 6aThey were using this question as a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing him.

The teachers of the law and Pharisees came to the star quarterback of the day. Like a backyard sandlot football game, Jesus drew the next play in the dirt. It was, I think, “a line in the sand;” He “drew a line in the sand” to say, “This behavior must stop!”

7b “If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.” 8Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground.

This time saying, “Pay attention! What is about to happen is only “scratching the surface” of what it means to follow me.”

9At this, those who heard began to go away one at a time, the older ones first, until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there. 10Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?”

11“No one, sir,” she said. “Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.”

So here’s the “dirt,” the foundation of what it means to be a follower of Christ based on this passage:

1.      “Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.” Luke 6:37 NIV

2.      ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” Matthew 22:37-40 NIV

3.      “By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” John 13:35 NIV


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