Then each of them went home, while 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 began to teach them. The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery; and making her stand before all of them, they said to him, "Teacher, this woman was caught in the very act of committing adultery. Now in the law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?" They said this to test him, so that they might have some charge to bring against him. Jesus bent down and wrote with his finger on the ground. When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, "Let anyone among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her." And once again he bent down and wrote on the ground. When they heard it, they went away, one by one, beginning with the elders; and Jesus was left alone with the woman standing before him. Jesus straightened up and said to her, "Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?" She said, "No one, sir." And Jesus said, "Neither do I condemn you. Go your way, and from now on do not sin again." John 7:53 - 8:11
It is so easy to condemn another
to blame them for our own sins
to taint them with our jealousy,rage
the sins of our parents borne
in our boiling angry blood.
We can live in a sanctuary of denial
with safe vehicles and fences
we close out the world's need
name ourselves the righteous
and bludgeon another woman to death.
Shut off from want and need
our greed has made us mean
we look for prey to soothe us
the destitute the honest, the sweet
point the finger, name the fault.
Those who we desire secretly
we pick up rocks to stone
those who we admire we choose
and condemn with stingy words
our ache and malice is unceasing.
The truly forgiven are soft
like morning light always gentle
never noticing the ancient scars
never pointing out the recent flaws
delighting in the newest smile.
The music of the forgiven is light
inviting all the world to dance
it's rhythm is childlike familiar
never cruel but swinging like grass
gentle accepting all who would dance.
The woman roughly brought to Jesus
shame and death desire by the elite
forgiveness and freedom desired only
by the one who looked on the sin of all
and hung on a rugged cross anyway.
So enter the life of the forgiven
where we dance and sing on soft ground
where rocks and guns and arrows are buried
the scars enough to remind us we are free
the gratitude deep and abiding for all.