Judge and Jury
“Who then will condemn us? No one—for Christ Jesus died for us and was raised to life for us, and he is sitting in the place of honor at God’s right hand, pleading for us. Romans 8:34 (NLT)”
I don’t know about you, but for me this is revolutionary. Did you catch that? Not only are we NOT condemned, but Christ sits at God’s right hand pleading our case. Jesus sticks up for us to the Father. He’s the one who says. “Give him another chance.” “I’m not giving up on her yet!” “They are righteous on my behalf.”
What does this knowledge do for you?
So another thought hit me this afternoon. I was reminded of the account of the adulteress woman. One of the things that frustrates me about this is that Jesus charges her to “Go and sin no more.” Obviously this woman had a problem and I’m sure that if she wasn’t aware of it before, by now she was. Jesus’ charge to go and live a right life seems rather hopeless in light of the situation. He gives her no insight into HOW to go and sin no more. Frustrating. Right?
1. Jesus knew her and the reality is that she was not in a place where she was ready to turn from her life of sin. According to the Biblical account she didn’t ask the follow up question; How?
2. Jesus knows that the only way to living a life free from sin is in relationship to him. In our desire to live sinless we are left to fall on the grace of Jesus Christ as we follow him. In a sense we are pushed into a deeper relationship with Jesus because it is only there that we find true freedom. Jesus knew that in her desperation she would have no where else to turn but to him. He was the one who stopped the condemnation. He stood up for her when no one else would. He valued her when everyone else wanted to put her down.
In either scenario the problem is that we have to accept the reality that Jesus did not come to condemn us but to save us. He said it point blank to the woman. “Neither do I (condemn you).” The theme is picked up immediately following this account.
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.” John 8:12 (NLT)
It’s the theme of Jesus’ life and ministry. Paul summed it up so well: “So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.” Romans 8:1
Does this make sense? Does it mean anything to you?