Monday, January 07, 2013

Sin No More

How many times, in scripture, does Jesus tell someone to "sin no more"? I found two occasions (though there may be more):

but Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. Early in the morning he came again to the temple. All the people came to him, and he sat down and taught them. The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery, and placing her in the midst they said to him, "Teacher, this woman has been caught in the act of adultery. Now in the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. So what do you say?" This they said to test him, that they might have some charge to bring against him. Jesus bent down and wrote with his finger on the ground. And as they continued to ask him, he stood up and said to them, "Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her." And once more he bent down and wrote on the ground. But when they heard it, they went away one by one, beginning with the older ones, and Jesus was left alone with the woman standing before him. Jesus stood up and said to her, "Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?" She said, "No one, Lord." And Jesus said, "Neither do I condemn you; go, and from now on sin no more."]] (John 8:1-11 ESV)

Now there is in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate a pool, in Aramaic called Bethesda, which has five roofed colonnades. In these lay a multitude of invalids—blind, lame, and paralyzed. One man was there who had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had already been there a long time, he said to him, "Do you want to be healed?" The sick man answered him, "Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, and while I am going another steps down before me." Jesus said to him, "Get up, take up your bed, and walk." And at once the man was healed, and he took up his bed and walked.Now that day was the Sabbath....Now the man who had been healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had withdrawn, as there was a crowd in the place. Afterward Jesus found him in the temple and said to him, "See, you are well! Sin no more, that nothing worse may happen to you." (John 5:2, 3, 5-9, 13, 14 ESV)

As Jesus said, He did not come to condemn the world, He came to save it. Neither should I "condemn the world" or judge others. It is not my place. Further, Jesus shows grace, as should I. Pointing out a person's sin (while I have a log in my own eye, no less) and proclaiming the wages of sin is death, only puts a very bad taste in the mouth of the unbeliever. No doubt he/she would say to himself/herself, "If that is a Christian, I want no part of it!" (I have ticked off at least one individual in this manner (years ago) who, to this day, has not fully forgiven me, yet. Did it glorify God? Nope! Naïve me, in my infinite wisdom (NOT!) only made matters worse! But, of course, I run to Jesus and beg Him to please right my wrongs! I imagine Him saying to me, "Go now, Brook, and sin no more."

The eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous
and his ears toward their cry. When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hearsand delivers them out of all their troubles. The Lord is near to the brokenheartedand saves the crushed in spirit.
(Psalm 34:15, 17, 18 ESV)
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