Quote of the Day: Jesus and the Adulteress

 

It is an essential story of Jesus’ ministry. From John 8:

“3Then the scribes and Pharisees brought to Him a woman caught in adultery. And when they had set her in the midst,
4they said to Him, “Teacher, this woman was caught in adultery, in the very act.
5“Now Moses, in the law, commanded us that such should be stoned.d But what do You say?”
6This 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.
7So 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.”
8And again He stooped down and wrote on the ground.
9Then 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.
10When 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?”
11She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said to her, “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.”
12Then 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.”
– NKJV

But that is not the quote of the day. There are always new translations that tug this way and that on points of doctrine or suggest novel insights into the must scrutinized texts in the history of the world. President Thomas Jefferson was famous in part for his groundbreaking, albeit private, edits of the Bible. Striking every passage witnessing to Jesus’ divinity, Jefferson reduced his own personal Jesus to a simple moralist. His mundane vision presaging a thousand sermons on the “Miracle of Sharing,” reducing the fish and loaves miracles to a mundane example of the power of sharing. Jefferson was privately a Deist while publicly posing as a worshipping Anglican. But he does not provide the quote of the day, either, just a useful example of the passion of sinful men to eviscerate the divine to claim absolute authority in their own right. Jefferson exercised vile authority over hundreds of slaves. And he shared this thought on the institution of slavery:

I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; that his justice cannot sleep forever.

So pretending that the Lord, the Creator of Heaven and Earth, was a mundane moralist of no particular authority comforted him in a way that tickled his intellectual vanity while calming his anxiety that he might be held accountable for his many, many sins. While there was forgiveness in the mercy of the Lord, as he would have heard every Sunday from his paid seat at Bruton Parish Church while studying law under the Whig George Wythe in Williamsburg, Jefferson clung to his cult of self with the enthusiasm of a dyed in the wool Modernist and Rationalist.

If Jefferson found anxiety in the authority of the divine, imagine a man whose crimes dwarf Jefferson, a holder not of hundreds of slaves but millions. Xi has undertaken to reform the revealed word of the Lord, which he finds to be irredeemably flawed. Xi and the CCP are excitedly working to produce a new, improved scripture that better reflects their views. From them, a fragment leaked to the Union of Catholic Asian News, as related by Crisis Magazine, sheds new darkness on the story of Jesus and the adulteress, changing the ending as follows:

When the crowd disappeared, Jesus stoned the sinner to death saying, “I too am a sinner. But if the law could only be executed by men without blemish, the law would be dead.”

Jesus then stones her to death.

Satan could not have put it more blasphemously himself. That is the quote of the day.

And having exposed you to such demonic tripe, I leave you with these words from Saint Paul as a consolation:

I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel— not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed.
-Galatians 1:6-9 (ESV)

Lord have mercy.

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  1. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Sisyphus: When the crowd disappeared, Jesus stoned the sinner to death saying, “I too am a sinner. But if the law could only be executed by men without blemish, the law would be dead.”

    Wow! Just, wow! Wow-and-a-half, even. “Subtlety? No, we don’t need that in China anymore. We’re run by the Communist Party.”


    If you would like to participate in the Quote of the Day series, our sign-up sheet for November awaits.

    If, on the other hand, you want to share with Ricochet the thanks you have to give, you might consider Group Writing, for which the theme this month is: Cornucopia of Thanks.

    • #1
  2. Sisyphus Member
    Sisyphus
    @Sisyphus

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Sisyphus: When the crowd disappeared, Jesus stoned the sinner to death saying, “I too am a sinner. But if the law could only be executed by men without blemish, the law would be dead.”

    Wow! Just, wow! Wow-and-a-half, even. “Subtlety? No, we don’t need that in China anymore. We’re run by the Communist Party.”

    This was a post that demanded that I write it from the moment I read the article. Whenever I think the Adversary has played himself out for awhile, he reminds that he is not frail flesh. 

    • #2
  3. MWD B612 "Dawg" Member
    MWD B612 "Dawg"
    @danok1

    Wow. just…wow!

    I’ll admit I’ve always wondered what our Lord wrote in the dirt. My guess is that it convicted the scribes and the Pharisees as much as what he said. Perhaps it was a list of the sins the S&Ps committed.

    • #3
  4. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    MWD B612 "Dawg" (View Comment):
    Perhaps it was a list of the sins the S&Ps committed.

    That’s always been my interpretation.

    • #4
  5. Sisyphus Member
    Sisyphus
    @Sisyphus

    MWD B612 "Dawg" (View Comment):

    Wow. just…wow!

    I’ll admit I’ve always wondered what our Lord wrote in the dirt. My guess is that it convicted the scribes and the Pharisees as much as what he said. Perhaps it was a list of the sins the S&Ps committed.

    I figured he just wrote “hypocrites”.

    • #5
  6. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Don’t be silly. He was just doodling math formulæ that nobody would understand for 1700 years.

    • #6
  7. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    “Does the guy gettin’ busy with his neighbor’s wife last weekend really want to get into this whole ‘adultery’ deal right now?”

    • #7
  8. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

     It is truly stunning how low the CCP will go. 

    • #8
  9. SkipSul Member
    SkipSul
    @skipsul

    Sisyphus (View Comment):

    MWD B612 "Dawg" (View Comment):

    Wow. just…wow!

    I’ll admit I’ve always wondered what our Lord wrote in the dirt. My guess is that it convicted the scribes and the Pharisees as much as what he said. Perhaps it was a list of the sins the S&Ps committed.

    I figured he just wrote “hypocrites”.

    He might simply have been writing out other verses from the Torah.

    • #9
  10. SkipSul Member
    SkipSul
    @skipsul

    The CCP “bible” floored me when I read about it a couple of months ago.  The CCP has mandated that all of its approved churches use its translation, and moreover add hymns to Xi and the CCP to all services, otherwise they will be razed and the leaders jailed.  Moreover, they’re using their social credit system to track exactly who goes to non-approved churches, when, and how often.  Our Chinese brethren are truly martyrs to endure this.

    • #10
  11. RightAngles Member
    RightAngles
    @RightAngles

    MarciN (View Comment):

    It is truly stunning how low the CCP will go.

    Not just them, either. For me, most of the Revised versions of the Bible are a bunch of pedestrian garbage. While they don’t go so far as to totally miss the point of “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone,” they have edited out all the poetry of the KJV.  “Through a glass darkly” is now “through a mirror dimly”and worse. These are well known phrases that appear in literature and movie titles and poems throughout Western Culture, and pretty soon nobody will even know the reference. But I guess that pales in comparison to the feminist Bible I heard about in the early 90s, where they wanted to remove all references to God “the father” etc.  How long will it be before we have a transgender Jesus or a lesbian Mary – hey! That explains the immaculate conception!

    • #11
  12. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Don’t be silly. He was just doodling math formulæ that nobody would understand for 1700 years.

    Picture or it never happened.

    • #12
  13. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    I’ve been reading a book by Randy Alcorn that has been around for a while called ‘Safely Home’ about a third generation Chinese Christian and his witness to his old college roommate turned successful businessman.

    The story is very good at portraying the struggle, sacrifice, faith, and joy of the underground Chinese church and this story of Xi is not a new one. Members of house churches memorize entire books so if one bible is taken from them, they can reproduce it. They walk for weeks into the mountains just to read The Word to villages far removed from the cities. I believe all the examples Mr. Alcorn presents in his book are composites of actual Chinese martyrs.

    It is an excellent story of the True Chinese Church.

    • #13
  14. Sisyphus Member
    Sisyphus
    @Sisyphus

    Stina (View Comment):

    I’ve been reading a book by Randy Alcorn that has been around for a while called ‘Safely Home’ about a third generation Chinese Christian and his witness to his old college roommate turned successful businessman.

    The story is very good at portraying the struggle, sacrifice, faith, and joy of the underground Chinese church and this story of Xi is not a new one. Members of house churches memorize entire books so if one bible is taken from them, they can reproduce it. They walk for weeks into the mountains just to read The Word to villages far removed from the cities. I believe all the examples Mr. Alcorn presents in his book are composites of actual Chinese martyrs.

    It is an excellent story of the True Chinese Church.

    Thank you. Reading Safely Home now.

    Safely Home Painting

    • #14
  15. Skyler Coolidge
    Skyler
    @Skyler

    Many people presume, not based on the text, that Jesus was writing out the sins of the people surrounding him.

    I always thought the story more powerful to imagine him simply doodling and the imaginations and guilty consciences of the individuals in the crowd began to work against them.  The older had more sins to recall, so they left first.  I think, were there a god and of course there isn’t, that if he had been so crass as to write the sins down then it would rob from his personal presence and authority and make him a mere chronicler. 

    • #15
  16. David Pettus Coolidge
    David Pettus
    @DavidPettus

    And yet the leadership in the Catholic Church seems okay with this.  Hard to tell who is the worse hypocrite.

     

    • #16
  17. Aaron Miller Member
    Aaron Miller
    @AaronMiller

    David Pettus (View Comment):

    And yet the leadership in the Catholic Church seems okay with this. Hard to tell who is the worse hypocrite.

     

    I suspect they are appeasers. The problem is not that they are blind to evil but that they believe every wolf is just a wayward sheep. They are well-meaning fools. 

    But the consequences! Lord have mercy, indeed. 

    • #17
  18. Goldgeller Member
    Goldgeller
    @Goldgeller

    Sisyphus: So pretending that the Lord, the Creator of Heaven and Earth, was a mundane moralist of no particular authority comforted him in a way that tickled his intellectual vanity while calming his anxiety that he might be held accountable for his many, many sins.

    Great post! Interesting.  This was particularly captivating and I feel it explains something about where we are now as a culture in the US, and perhaps also the West. I’m going to think on this.

    Regarding what Jesus wrote: I think it is interesting that we don’t know and there doesn’t seem to be any recorded discussion about what he wrote. You’d think people would’ve gone to look at it and there would have been some sort of verbal history about it. But there isn’t. I have no idea. Someone, I forget who, suggested that Jesus didn’t actually write into dirt (easy) but actually into hardened stone or clay (a miracle). The idea being that his statement and his actions would have appropriated the authority of God giving Moses the 10 commandments, making Jesus the highest lawgiver. 

    • #18
  19. Aaron Miller Member
    Aaron Miller
    @AaronMiller

    Sisyphus: 10When 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?”
    11She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said to her, “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.”
    12Then 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.”

    This passage pairs with Christ’s final moments on the cross when He forgives the repentant thief without demand or opportunity of amends. It’s a breathtaking mercy that asks nothing more than to start anew and live in “the light of life.”

    It’s the greatest hope any soul could imagine. There is no depth of evil from which one cannot rise if one has only the gift of faith — the will to return.

    As Catholics say at every Mass, “Lord, I am not worthy that You should enter under my roof. But only say the word and I shall be healed.” In those words are the whole of Christian faith: the joy and the agony, the hope and the surrender.

    • #19
  20. Umbra Fractus Member
    Umbra Fractus
    @UmbraFractus

    Sisyphus: When the crowd disappeared, Jesus stoned the sinner to death saying, “I too am a sinner. But if the law could only be executed by men without blemish, the law would be dead.”

    My initial reaction was along the lines of, “Oh, there he goes bringing Xi into it again.”

    But… Wow. I’m speechless.

    • #20
  21. Sisyphus Member
    Sisyphus
    @Sisyphus

    Umbra Fractus (View Comment):

    Sisyphus: When the crowd disappeared, Jesus stoned the sinner to death saying, “I too am a sinner. But if the law could only be executed by men without blemish, the law would be dead.”

    My initial reaction was along the lines of, “Oh, there he goes bringing Xi into it again.”

    But… Wow. I’m speechless.

    Thank you. When I stumbled on that fragment, I realized that it is on a par with the frequently postulated Devil’s Bible one reads about and in a continuum with the life of poor Stephen Hawking, who appears to have struggled mightily with proving Him unnecessary and therefore null, writing Him out with an equation, or certain politicians who express an empty piety while supposing that His unchanging law has “evolved” into His celebration of their heartless transgressions.

    Yes, I brought Xi into it. But it was the CCP Bible that was the starting point for the piece and he is the face of that evil. That fragment I quoted is so demonic it has become for me an emblem of the whole CCP campaign against His church and the wider struggle of His church in the world. It illuminates and exemplifies through its extremeness the worldly corruptions from His temptation in the desert to the first Gnostics and syncretists to the Rationalist project of “maturing” beyond Theism. 

    Like the serpent. 

    • #21
  22. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Skyler (View Comment):
    I always thought the story more powerful to imagine him simply doodling and the imaginations and guilty consciences of the individuals in the crowd began to work against them. The older had more sins to recall, so they left first.

    I like this idea.

    • #22
  23. HeavyWater Member
    HeavyWater
    @HeavyWater

    Skyler (View Comment):

    Many people presume, not based on the text, that Jesus was writing out the sins of the people surrounding him.

    I always thought the story more powerful to imagine him simply doodling and the imaginations and guilty consciences of the individuals in the crowd began to work against them. The older had more sins to recall, so they left first. I think, were there a god and of course there isn’t, that if he had been so crass as to write the sins down then it would rob from his personal presence and authority and make him a mere chronicler.

    People forget that the gospel of John did not originally contain this story of the woman accused of adultery and that this story was likely added by a scribe centuries later, perhaps to add a teachable moment for readers.

    Did this incident actually happen in reality?  Probably not.  But it’s a great story.

    • #23
  24. colleenb Member
    colleenb
    @colleenb

    RightAngles(View Comment):

    MarciN (View Comment):

    It is truly stunning how low the CCP will go.

    Not just them, either. For me, most of the Revised versions of the Bible are a bunch of pedestrian garbage. While they don’t go so far as to totally miss the point of “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone,” they have edited out all the poetry of the KJV. “Through a glass darkly” is now “through a mirror dimly”and worse. These are well known phrases that appear in literature and movie titles and poems throughout Western Culture, and pretty soon nobody will even know the reference. But I guess that pales in comparison to the feminist Bible I heard about in the early 90s, where they wanted to remove all references to God “the father” etc. How long will it be before we have a transgender Jesus or a lesbian Mary – hey! That explains the immaculate conception!

    “Fishers of people”. Oh the blasphemy to the English language let alone faith!  And the revisions to Christmas carols. “Pleased as man with men to dwell” to pleased as one, etc. I stick with the original words. Amen.

    • #24
  25. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    colleenb (View Comment):
    Amen. Aperson.

    FTFF .😁🤣😜

    • #25
  26. Sisyphus Member
    Sisyphus
    @Sisyphus

    HeavyWater (View Comment):

    Skyler (View Comment):

    Many people presume, not based on the text, that Jesus was writing out the sins of the people surrounding him.

    I always thought the story more powerful to imagine him simply doodling and the imaginations and guilty consciences of the individuals in the crowd began to work against them. The older had more sins to recall, so they left first. I think, were there a god and of course there isn’t, that if he had been so crass as to write the sins down then it would rob from his personal presence and authority and make him a mere chronicler.

    People forget that the gospel of John did not originally contain this story of the woman accused of adultery and that this story was likely added by a scribe centuries later, perhaps to add a teachable moment for readers.

    Did this incident actually happen in reality? Probably not. But it’s a great story.

    Augustine notes that it is missing from most but not all early manuscripts and suggests that it may have been left out from some in a misguided effort to avoid an appearance of condoning adultery. That resistance and the fact of its early authorship actually speak to its historicity. Why let it in at all if it is controversial? Because John put it in and it should never have been left out just because it went against the prevailing cultural grain.Whether in the 2nd Century Roman Empire or the 21st Century CCP’s Empire.

    There is an excellent book, Hostile Witnesses, by Gary Michuta, that knocks down a lot of skeptic’s arguments surrounding Christianity using evidence from non-Christian and anti-Christian sources. It is a hearty curative for the “Historical Jesus” stuff.

    • #26
  27. Sisyphus Member
    Sisyphus
    @Sisyphus

    Arahant (View Comment):

    colleenb (View Comment):
    Amen. Aperson.

    FTFF .😁🤣😜

    And thus, in a thunderclap and a puff of smoke, @arahant was taken from the world leaving no trace.

    • #27
  28. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Sisyphus (View Comment):
    And thus, in a thunderclap and a puff of smoke, @arahant was taken from the world leaving no trace.

    Nope. Still here.

    • #28
  29. Sisyphus Member
    Sisyphus
    @Sisyphus

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Sisyphus (View Comment):
    And thus, in a thunderclap and a puff of smoke, @arahant was taken from the world leaving no trace.

    Nope. Still here.

    Perhaps, but it makes for a better story.

    • #29
  30. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Sisyphus (View Comment):
    Perhaps, but it makes for a better story.

    That’s what Xi said.

    • #30