I think I need to clarify some more. I need to build on what was in yesterday’s discussion. The discussion was in regard to not judging–finding no condemnation. What does that look like?
The church should be a place of refuge. It should be a place filled with people who are filled with the love of Christ, the One who did not judge others nor find condemnation in their past. Jesus looked at those with the dark past, the skeleton in the closet, and found–get this–compassion.
He looked at them and saw what they could be, not where they were. He saw them as people, not a statistic, not as a project, not as a charity, and not as a ministry!
Is it that way today? Don’t we have a tendency to label more than we love? We have to change. We have to look beyond what is face value. We have to look beyond the person’s past and see THE PERSON!
What would it take to see beyond the man’s adultery? To see the woman and not the pregnancy or the abortion? Even as you read those three words, your mind and emotions reacted. Something came to your mind. The question though, is what is your answer? When faced with that moment, what would you say? Could you show love the way that we are called to love? Could you look at him and offer him the friendship he needs? Could you look at her and see the pain she carries through your own opinions? Her hurt goes so much deeper than any pity you may have. Jesus knew that.
In Romans 8, we have a great example.
Jesus returned to the Mount of Olives, 2 but early the next morning he was back again at the Temple. A crowd soon gathered, and he sat down and taught them. 3 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.
4 “Teacher,” they said to Jesus, “this woman was caught in the act of adultery. 5 The law of Moses says to stone her. What do you say?”
6 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. 7 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!” 8 Then he stooped down again and wrote in the dust.
9 When the accusers heard this, they slipped away one by one, beginning with the oldest, until only Jesus was left in the middle of the crowd with the woman. 10 Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, “Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?”
11 “No, Lord,” she said.
And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.”
It’s obvious, but it’s also not that easy, is it? It is time to go a little deeper.