“Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, ‘I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.'” John 8:12
John 8 holds one of the most famous bible stories of all time: the woman caught in adultery. This woman was caught in the very act. As I read this passage, I thought about how she may have felt in that moment: regret, shame, embarrassment, anger. She was caught in the most vulnerable act of sin by the most esteemed religious leaders of that day. It’s heart wrenching to think about. Should she have been doing it? Obviously not. But, no one wants their dirty laundry aired out in front of everyone, especially in front of those who upheld the law to the utmost degree.
Jesus does something truly profound in His response to these Pharisees and scribes. Instead of falling into their trap, He stoops down on the ground and begins to write in the dirt as if He didn’t hear a word. We don’t know exactly what He writes, but scholars believe it could be the hidden sins of those very accusers. That’s like someone tweeting your deepest, most hidden thoughts (no thanks). Naturally, they all began to trickle out one by one until the woman was left with not one person holding a stone. Jesus says to her, “Neither do I condemn you. Go and sin no more.” (verse 11)
The world loves to focus on the no condemnation part and conveniently leaves out the go and sin no more part. But, Jesus follows that statement with another one: “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”
Darkness can bring much anxiety and fear. I would be lying if I told you that there’s not a twinge of fear when walking into a dark home. I just can’t know for sure what lurks around the corner. Light can relieve that fear in a millisecond. Simply hit the switch and your jacket that once looked like a scary man will go back to its normal form. Light can bring so much peace in many different ways.
Jesus describes Himself as the light of the world. Light can bring to surface what we may not want uncovered (like the woman caught in adultery), but that ultimately leads to our freedom- freedom from bondage of sin and the power of sin. To tap into that power over sin, we must abide in His word (verse 31) and hold fast to those promises. When God says He will take care of you, guess what? He will take care of you (Matthew 6:25-34). When God says the Spirit intercedes for us when we don’t know what to pray, guess what? The Spirit intercedes. (Romans 8:26) The list is endless, but we won’t know this list unless we spend time with our Savior. When we abide in the word, we starve our flesh and rid the power sin has over us. We live in freedom.
Friends, I don’t know what is weighing you down today. Maybe it’s “mom guilt”, or the fact that you were drunk over the weekend, or maybe you’re having trouble taking every thought captive. Whatever it is, please know this: Jesus doesn’t condemn you. In fact, He calls you to the foot of the cross where we are found as a new creation. (2 Corinthians 5:17) So, live in the light and take heed to His word. His death on the cross and the truth we read in God’s word can comfort our deepest sorrows, heal our broken wounds, and convict our ugliest sins. Go and sin no more.
be free. xoxo