1 Samuel 16:7b “God does not see the same way people see. People look at the outside of a person, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
‘People in glass houses shouldn't throw stones.’ Have you heard that a time or two, have you used it yourself to others? Maybe you have used this one, ‘Walk a mile in my shoes’. These statements and probably many more have been used by people who feel they are being judged by others or to stop someone from judging another. As humans, in our sinful minds, it's easy to jump to conclusions about people or use judgmental words with a person or their situation. In fact, most of us do it without giving it a second thought. To judge is to form an opinion or to come to a conclusion about someone.
When we begin to study scripture, we can begin to understand that what Jesus teaches while on earth and through His disciples, is that everything we do comes down to one thing, our hearts. God does not judge our outward appearance; He judges our heart. God in all His wisdom already understands our intentions and wants to know our hearts and whether we will answer the call to follow Him. God judges our hearts and calls us all to repentance and salvation in Jesus.
Although we spend time reading the Bible and know our Bible stories, I like to look at them every so often in a new way. The perfect example of those in glass houses who shouldn't throw stones is found in John 8:1-11. Jesus was going about his day teaching by the temple. Suddenly some Pharisees bring a woman to Him, who had been caught in adultery. In front of everyone they challenged Jesus saying, “This woman has been caught in adultery and the law of Moses says she is to be stoned. What do you say we do?”
Jesus knew the intentions in their hearts were not about the woman’s sin as much as that they wanted to trick Jesus so they could find a reason to charge Him. How Jesus responds is one of my favorite stories in the gospels. He doesn't argue and fight back with words, He simply begins writing in the sand. Then comes a phrase we all need to put in our hearts. “He who is without sin cast the first stone.”
Those standing by Jesus including the Pharisees began to read the words written and one by one the stones fell to the ground and the crowd began to walk away until it was just the woman and Jesus. Jesus looks at the terrified woman and asks, “Where are your accusers. Has no one judged you guilty?”
She replies with a no and Jesus speaks again, “I also don't judge you guilty. Go now and sin no more.”
This incident illustrates the harmony of justice and mercy and Christian salvation. God will judge our sins but also provide a way of escape from condemnation- Romans 3:23, 8:1. Although Jesus does not encourage the sin, He loves the sinner. He will never treat sin casually but will call sinners to turn away from their corrupt life.
Like writing the sins of those accusing the woman, Jesus is prompting us to examine our own lives before picking up stones to throw at another. Before we pass judgment on another because of their sins we need to stop and remember how many times God has forgiven us and we will realize that none of us has the right to throw stones- Luke 6:37, Ephesians 4:31-32.
We must remember when we feel that judgmental attitude growing in us that God wants to reconcile the world to Himself, and we are called to be ministers to reconciliation- 2 Corinthians 5:18. Our goal should not be to judge and condemn. It should be to become one body in Christ and seek reconciliation with one another- Colossians 3:12-13, Romans 12:17-21. Before you pick up that next stone, remember you too live in a glass house. Examine your motives, examine your heart, and drop that stone. Instead, love the sinner and forgive as you have been forgiven and help light the path to Jesus.
Jesus came for one purpose, to seek and save this world lost to sin and the devil’s schemes. His goal is to see everyone find and follow Him and have the hope of salvation with Him and God, our Creator. Always remember, no matter how far you’ve fallen, no matter your past, or where you are at now. Jesus still kneels beside you, wraps His loving arms around you and says, “Your sins are forgiven, go and sin no more.”
Don' underestimate the value of daily Bible reading. I've shared many reasons for taking time to read the Bible daily and how we can grow with Jesus. Today I just want to share how taking time reading scripture benefits me. What happens when I read the Bible every day? My day seems to be more focused. I feel like I’m more present and things aren’t so chaotic. I know that I can easily get on edge when I literally haven’t taken the time to be still and seek the Lord. The benefit of reading scripture for me—is that it really sets the tone for my day, my week, and how I interact with everyone else. I gain a new perspective on things happening around me and I have come to have a deeper love of Jesus and trust He is taking care of me and my family. I hope you too have been able to list some benefits you have found in reading the Bible and I hope you have had time to join me as we have journeyed through many books of the Bible. Today we will continue our study through
1 Corinthians 15:29-58
Study 24- 1 Corinthians 15:29-58- https://www.docdroid.net/5tLSpsT/1-corinthians-study-24-docx
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