More than forgiveness This is a powerful story of justice and mercy. Jesus is on the side of the woman who has been accused of sin and crime. It was an unjust accusation, and the people who brought her had little good in mind.
Jesus offers more than forgiveness – he brings mercy.
Mercy forgives with compassion and doesn’t need lectures. It restores dignity to the victims of injustice like the lady in this story. It is the same in Jesus, for those who do not receive their dignity because of something they are, or something they did and are unjustly treated. Jesus’ fiery heart of mercy Jesus did not condemn; he turns the tables a bit. He simply says: Anyone here without sin – take the stone and throw it. Nobody does.
In this atmosphere of darkness we need to hear something of the love and the mercy of God. Would light of mercy come into their darkness of condemnation? Would they leave their darkness into a personal space where they might have a change of heart?
This is also about the challenge to live honestly and without sin; and to be able to takes steps like this woman’s life, to move on. All hear this word from Jesus – I do not condemn you. This comes to our society and to ourselves. We need to hear this word for ourselves as often we throw stones at ourselves more than at others. What we condemn in others is what sometimes we do not like in ourselves.
Lord may we enter this world of mercy wherever we need to. May we hear these words always, ‘I do not condemn you’
Donal Neary S.J.