by: Joshua Golightly
Have you ever accused someone of wrong doing or accused someone of something that they may not have actually done? Have you ever looked at someone and thought to yourself, "At least I am not as bad as that person."? Once these thoughts start to enter your mind you have already began accusing that person of wrong that they have done. You have accused that person of being beneath you.
We all want to make ourselves look better then we truly are. We desire for people to see only the best of us. We don't want them to see the worse of us because then we can't accuse them of their wrong doings. We can't tell them what they have done wrong because then they can turn it around and tell us what we have done wrong. It then becomes a two way street.
The Bible had people who did the same thing. The Pharisees and the teachers of the law always wanted to make themselves look good. They held themselves up in very high regard. They always wanted to be seen as the most popular and holy people. Now I am not saying that we are all Pharisees. No, I am saying that we all have those thoughts and sometimes those actions. We are human. Selfish thinking is human nature.
After Jesus was around for some time the Pharisees and the teachers of the law started to not like Him very much. They did not like Him mainly because He made them look bad. No longer were they the most popular people, now Jesus was the most popular. No longer did people go to them; now everyone wanted to go to Him for things. Jesus was also teaching the people things that, to them, contradicted the Law of Moses. So they decided to come up with a plan to trap Jesus. And they did this by accusing Him of breaking law.
John 8:2-6a (NIV)
After reading this part of the scripture we can start to think, "What sort of trap are we talking about here?" There are at least two traps that the Pharisees were trying to get Jesus to fall for.
The first was: They used the Law of Moses saying that this woman should be stoned, basically put to death, because of her actions. They knew if Jesus would have stood up and said, "Stone her" they could turn him into the Roman officials because he had no right to put someone to death. Only the Romans had that right.
The second trap was: If Jesus would have stood up and said, "We do nothing to her." Thus avoiding sentencing her to death. The Jews would have been upset because Jesus was not obeying the Law.
This put Jesus in a very tough spot. One that I do not know how I would have gotten out of, without getting into some sort of trouble with someone. However, we will get to that in another blog post.
What we want to focus on right now is how the Pharisees and the teachers of the law were trying to make themselves look good. We need to avoid this in our lives. We need to avoid having the Pharisees mindset of, "I am not that bad, look at so and so". If this mindset is taken on, this is where we start accusing people of their wrong doing.
Now the thing about this woman was that she was caught in the act of adultery. In other words, they were not accusing her but rather telling everyone what she had done. But isn't that what accusing is, telling others what they have done wrong? Majority of the time we tend to not accuse people of doing something good but rather accuse them for doing something wrong. They want to make this woman, and Jesus, look bad. This made them feel better about who they were.
We start to run low on grace and humility when we start to stand in a crowd accusing others before we accuse ourselves. Bottom line. We think that we are doing the right thing, and we may be doing the right thing depending on the circumstances. However, when we are only doing it to make ourselves look good then we are not showing any humility or grace.
Jesus came into this world to show us humility and grace. We are to be like Jesus. When we are like Jesus and are welcoming Him then we receive and give more grace. That is the life that Jesus wants for everyone. When we welcome Jesus we welcome Life.