John 8:1-12

No Condemnation

John 8:1-12
 John 8:11
“Neither do I condemn you. Go now and leave your life of sin”
These are the wonderful words spoken by Jesus, to a woman who moments earlier had stood in abject humiliation and terror, awaiting judgement and probably brutal execution for the charge of adultery that had been brought against her. I encourage you to read the story for yourself – John 8: 1-11. It contains the classic line that has made its way into our popular vocabulary, “let he who is without sin cast the first stone” (John 8:7).

When we looked the story in detail in last Sunday’s sermon, we discovered that, rather than simply being a warning against hypocrisy, it reveals deep truths of Jesus’ humanity and divinity. However, in this short devotional I will focus on the final words that Jesus spoke to this woman, “Neither do I condemn you. Go now and leave your life of sin” John 8:11
 
The crowd and the religious leaders have all melted away in silent acknowledgement that they are in no position to judge. Only Jesus is left; in his humanity his integrity is intact because he has never sinned. And in his divinity, he is the one whose very words eternally define what is right.

2 Corinthians 5:10 says that we must all appear before the judgement seat of Christ. The scene played out in that dusty courtyard will be replayed for each one of us in a far more glorious setting as we stand alone before Jesus when he returns. This is a prospect that should shape our lives profoundly – but it need not fill us with fear.

“Neither do I condemn you”. The amazing gospel truth that John spells out again and again is that, if we have put our trust in Jesus, we can be confident that he will never condemn us. He’s the lamb of God who takes away our sin (John 1:29). He came so that those who believe in him should not perish (John 3:16). He will never cast out anyone who comes to him (John 6:37) and on and on through the gospel that we are studying.

Jesus will challenge us about on-going sin in our lives – as he said to the woman, “now leave your life of sin”. He will even discipline us (Hebrews 12:6). But if we are in him, he doesn’t condemn us for it. He doesn’t reject us. In fact, he comes close and helps us with it! Just as a parent feels irresistibly drawn towards their child wallowing in mud to pull them out and clean them up, so is God’s heart attitude to his children even when they sin.

It is common for Christians to struggle to find this degree of assurance. We constantly think of reasons why Christ should condemn us or at least grow tired of us. That is why Jesus speaks so plainly – “neither do I condemn you”.

If you struggle to keep hold of this truth – then come closer to Jesus today. If you are conscious of sin, disobedience or half heartedness confess it to him and ask for his forgiveness. Then thank him that he does not condemn or reject you but walks alongside you as you live today afresh for him.

"Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus." Romans 8:1

Apply

  1. Imagine yourself in the woman’s place with whatever sin you might be conscious of in mind. Imagine Jesus asking you, “…….. (your name) where are your accusers, who accuses you?”. How would you answer him?

  2. Shut your eyes and deep in your spirit hear Jesus saying to you, “I do not condemn you.” Keep hearing it until assurance and thankfulness is stirred up and then express that to Jesus in praise.

  3. “Go now, don’t live for sin but live for me”.  Picture the day in front of you as you go into it walking closely with Jesus. Ask for his guidance and help and express your desire to stay close.

  4. These assurances are for those who have come to Jesus and declared their belief and trust in him. If that’s not you yet, find a believer and ask or their help as you take that step “whoever comes to me I will never turn away” John 6:37

Prayer

Dear Lord Jesus,

I thank you for the security of my position in you right now. You have taken away my sin and made me your own. I rest in the assurance that you will never condemn or reject me. As I face the week ahead, I hear your call to leave my life of sin and to follow you. I choose to obey, trusting that you will be close by me every step of the way.

Amen
This Everyday Devotions was written by David Featherstone who, together with his wife Amanda, leads our Sutton Venue.

If you would like to listen to the whole of this week’s sermon on John 8:1-12 why not download the Everyday Church App or visit our website, YouTube Channel and at our Online Church Services.

This Everyday Devotions has also inspired a devotional video that you can watch on our YouTube Channel.

Follow our Everyday Devotions Playlist for some songs to help you worship God in Spirit and truth this week.