Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

The Disciple Jesus Loved

In today’s gospel reading is this story, a story I love because it tells us, as all our mothers always have, to mind our own business, to look to correcting our own behavior and not that of others.

There is a note to this passage, in The Lectionary: “The most ancient authorities lack 7.53—8.11; other authorities add the passage here or after 7.36 or after 21.25 or after Luke 21.38, with variations of text; some mark the passage as doubtful.”

The story is in the book of John, who is believed to be the disciple Jesus loved the best, and who tends to see into the heart of things. Although his closest followers, the disciples, often got it wrong (like arguing over who would sit at his right hand in heaven), they lived and worked with Jesus while he was here living on earth, and John seemed to know him best of all. To me, this story shows what Jesus expects of us – that we look to our own sins – and also, his compassion towards women.

(This is an image by Dagmar Anders)

John 7:53-8:11
53Then each of them went home, 81while Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. 2Early in the morning he came again to the temple. All the people came to him and he sat down and began to teach them.

3The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery; and making her stand before all of them, 4they said to him, ‘Teacher, this woman was caught in the very act of committing adultery. 5Now in the law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?’ 6They 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. 7When 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.’

8And once again he bent down and wrote on the ground.* 9When they heard it, they went away, one by one, beginning with the elders; and Jesus was left alone with the woman standing before him.

10Jesus straightened up and said to her, ‘Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?’ 11She said, ‘No one, sir.’* And Jesus said, ‘Neither do I condemn you. Go your way, and from now on do not sin again.’]]*

December 30, 2010 - Posted by | Arts & Handicrafts, Community, Cultural, Family Issues, Living Conditions, Marriage, Social Issues, Spiritual, Women's Issues


  1. Thanks for the post. Yes, intlxpatr, it makes a difference. I was always interested in exploring what makes us different. This is overwhelming ethics which is somehow lacking in other religions (and you know which I mean here foremost).

    Apart from that, the Gospel of John may be highly problematic since Christian anti-Semitism has its origin right there.

    Comment by Fahad | December 31, 2010 | Reply

  2. Hmmm. Fahad, now I will have to read the gospel of John with new eyes, to see if I can see anti-Semitism. It has always seemed to me that since Jesus was Jewish, and trying to show us how to get it right, this relationship between us and God, that we are all kind of a variety of Jew . . . even the Muslims, LOL!

    Comment by intlxpatr | January 1, 2011 | Reply

  3. You wrote: John seemed to know him best of all

    It is easy for people to follow the crowd and assume that this-or-that tradition of men must be true. What is harder is to for people to hold the authority of God’s word above the traditions of men. One has to take off their own shoes before they can take a walk in someone else’s moccasins and, similarly, when it comes to a case of The Bible vs. Tradition, one has to be willing to let go of the traditions of men in order to see the truth that is hidden in plain sight in the text of scripture. has a free eBook that compares scripture with scripture in order to highlight the facts in the plain text of scripture that are usually overlooked about the “other disciple, whom Jesus loved”. Since scripture is profitable for correction, those who are interested may want to weigh the testimony of scripture that it presents regarding the one whom “Jesus loved” and may find it to be helpful as it encourages bible students to heed the admonition, “prove all things”.

    Comment by Bible student | January 5, 2011 | Reply

  4. You’ll note, Bible Student, that my focus was not on ‘John’ so much as on the intent of his message.

    I’ve read through your materials. You’ve done an excellent analysis and examination, using biblical evidence. I have no argument against your conclusions. 🙂

    As I said – those closest to Jesus often seemed to get it so wrong, and he was always correcting them for their short-sightedness. One day, God willing, we will all see, no longer through the glass, darkly.

    Comment by intlxpatr | January 5, 2011 | Reply

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