Jesus is perfectly okay to create an awkward situation… But this time, he ticks off the religious people IN the TEMPLE! What does He say about Himself that angers the church folks?
Lifegroup Discussions are up after the jump!
The preceding scene
Right before Jesus makes his incredible statement about being the LIGHT, John shows us this scene:
John 8:1-3 NLT
Jesus returned to the Mount of Olives, but early the next morning he was back again at the Temple. A crowd soon gathered, and he sat down and taught them. As he was speaking, the teachers of religious law and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in the act of adultery. They put her in front of the crowd.
You probably know this story before we look into it, don’t you? This is one of the most popular encounters Jesus has in John’s Gospel.
Who are the major players in this part of the story? List them with your group.
Which of these are in darkness, and which are in the light?
What do you think is the correlation between “light,” and “life?” (remember the “bios,” and the “zoe?”)
The Pharisees challenge Jesus
Pick up the story again with the challenge by the Pharisees:
John 8:4-6 NLT
“Teacher,” they said to Jesus, “this woman was caught in the act of adultery. The law of Moses says to stone her. What do you say?”
They were trying to trap him into saying something they could use against him, but Jesus stooped down and wrote in the dust with his finger.
How had the darkness of this woman caused her to act?
Of course, we can’t know her heart, but what are some general motivations that bring a woman (or a man) to commit adultery?
How might she be using bios solutions to fill a zoe need in her life?
How had the darkness of the religious people caused them to act?
Good thing this is way in the past. Religious people would never act this way today, would we?
Why would “people of God” want to do what these Pharisees are doing?
How might their actions be motivated by bios and zoe? darkness and light?
Jesus responds with the Law
John 8:7-8 NLT
They kept demanding an answer, so he stood up again and said, “All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!” Then he stooped down again and wrote in the dust.
This is strange behavior for Jesus… There is no other time that we find him stooping and writing in the dust.
How did Jesus take a strong stand for the Law of God with his answer?
Jesus agreed with the law, but wouldn’t agree to the Pharisees carrying out judgement, because they were just as guilty as she was before God. Can you derive a principle out of this pivotal moment?
Jesus diffuses the situation by shining his light into it. What is the result of shining the light on the religious?
Jesus responds with grace
John 8:10-11 NLT
Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, “Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?”
“No, Lord,” she said.
And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.”
What is the result of shining the light on the sinful woman?
Why didn’t Jesus require more of her? Why not tell her to get into church, find a small group, get a mentor, repeat the “Hail Mary,” and so forth?
According to John, Jesus’ very next words may answer this question fully:
John 8:12 NLT
Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, “I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.”
What does the light do?
Is this the pattern in our lives? Or, do we wander and roam? Does the light of Jesus always lead to life? What should that look like in our lives?