The story of the woman caught in adultery who was dragged before Jesus by the religious leaders of His day, is a remarkable message for all of us. The Book of John relates the story:
“Now early in the morning [Jesus] came again into the temple, and all the people came to Him; and He sat down and taught them. Then the scribes and Pharisees brought to Him a woman caught in adultery. And when they had set her in the midst, they said to Him,
“Teacher, this woman was caught in adultery, in the very act. Now Moses, in the law, commanded us that such should be stoned. But what do You say?”
This they said, testing Him, that they might have something of which to accuse Him. But Jesus stooped down and wrote on the ground with His finger, as though He did not hear. So when they continued asking Him, He raised Himself up and said to them:
“He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.”
And again He stooped down and wrote on the ground. Then those who heard it, being convicted by their conscience, went out one by one, beginning with the oldest even to the last. And Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. When Jesus had raised Himself up and saw no one but the woman, He said to her,
“Woman, where are those accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you?”
“No one, Lord.”
And Jesus said to her,
“Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.”
Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying,
“I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”John 8:2-12
Consider that by coming into the presence of Christ, this woman taken in adultery had the light in front of her and the darkness was put behind her. She came into the light of His mercy. Her sin was behind her. I love this wonderful twist on the Walt Whitman poem:
“Keep your face always toward the [SON]shine, and shadows will fall behind you.”
Of shadows and light, one of my favorite brothers in Christ, Gary McHenry, made some extraordinary observations:
“Shadows are a form of darkness. All the things that seem so frightening in the moment are like a shadow in light of eternity. As adults we can internalize our shadows. To address them we must identify the shadows in our lives for what they truly are: [They are] without substance in the light of Christ. Light is a force of power. Darkness is not. It merely reoccupies the space vacated by light. Darkness is nothing more than the absence of light.”
When we were children, we were afraid of the darkness. We were afraid of what we couldn’t see. In our innocence, we longed for the light. We longed for love. Jesus is both. When we, as adults, come to Him with the humility of a child, He meets our need for both light and love. (1 John 1:5-7; John 3:16-21)
How can we address our fear of darkness? The Bible makes it clear:
“For you were once darkness, but NOW you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth), And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them.” Ephesians 5:8-9,11
When we are born again, we ARE in the light of the Lord but we must decide whether to WALK as a child of light! To walk in the light, we must be COMMITTED to set our greatest goals, aspirations, and hope—in Christ. We must be actively seeking Him [walking]; indeed, chasing Him as we would chase the sun around the earth in order to stay in the sunlight. We must be immersed in God’s Word, which is a lamp to our feet and a light to our path. (Psalms 119:105) God’s Word and His Spirit will keep us in the light of His presence.
Ah, my friends, keep your face towards God’s Son, and the shadows will fall behind you. When our face is to the Son, we reflect the light of HIS glory to the world!
“You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.”
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