Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” “No one, sir,” she said. “Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.” (John 8:10-11 NIV)
I am sure the woman at the well thought she knew what the outcome of this would be. It was Jewish law to stone someone who had been caught in the act of adultery. She was preparing to meet her Maker. And meet Him she did! He was standing right in front of her. There are so many cool things about this story but one I’ve recently come to appreciate is Jesus last words to her. “I don’t condemn you either. But stop sinning.” You see, Jesus understood that we need both grace (mercy & love) and truth. Truth, as in, we are all sinners and need a Savior. In our world, we don’t want people (including ourselves) to be uncomfortable so we don’t talk about the obvious things in our lives that we need to stop doing. What we forget is, we need truth. We need forgiveness. We need grace. If we refuse to speak the truth, we cannot recognize the never-ending, all powerful love that God wants to share with us. Jesus balanced truth and grace perfectly. He said to the woman, “I love you but stop sinning.” He says the same thing to us today.