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Some Thoughts on Sin

John 8:1-11

Victor M. Eskew




A.    Jesus was often tempted and tested by the Jewish leaders of His day.


B.      These men with evil hearts would use anything in an attempt to condemn the Christ.

1.      They questioned His willingness to pay taxes.

2.      They questioned every time He healed someone.

3.      They questioned Him about various teachings such as the resurrection.

4.      They would question His teachings.

5.      They would question His authority.


C.     In this study, we will find the scribes and Pharisees using an individual in an attempt to entrap the Son of God. 

1.      The account is referred to as “The Woman Taken in Adultery” (John 8:1-11).

2.      Our study of this incident will take a focused perspective.  We want to look at “Some Thoughts on Sin.”


I.                   SIN CAN BE COMMITTED


A.    The reason the scribes and Pharisees could test Jesus on this occasion is because sin can be committed.


B.      On this occasion a woman was caught in the act of adultery (John 8:3a).


And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery…


C.     Adultery:

1.      The act was a violation of the Law of Moses (Exo. 20:14).


Thou shalt not commit adultery.


2.      It is one of the works of the flesh (Gal. 5:19-21).


Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these, adultery…


3.      It involved a sexual relationship between a man and a women, one or both, of whom were married to someone else.

4.      Adultery can also be committed when a person divorces his/her mate for a cause other than fornication and marries another (Rom. 7:2-3).


D.    Sin is not something we should desire to commit.  However, sin is something that all can commit (I John 2:1a).


My little children, these things write unto you, that ye sin not…




A.    Adultery is usually a very private sin.

1.      It involves only two people.

2.      It is committed in a bedroom or a hotel room.

3.      It is done in another town or state.

4.      It is done in the dark of night.


B.      These religious leaders were somehow monitoring the actions of this woman (John 8:3b-4).


...and when they had set her in the midst, they said unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act.


1.      She was not just being accused of being guilty of adultery.

2.      She was “taken in adultery, in the very act.”

3.      NOTE:  It makes you question what had transpired.

a.      Was this woman “set up” by these Jewish leaders?

b.      It is interesting that they brought the woman to Jesus, but they did not bring the man.


C.     There are some people who love to watch, find fault with, criticize, and condemn others.

1.      They see the sins of others being greater than their own sins.

2.      Pointing out the sins of others make them feel better about themselves.


D.    Jesus warned about judging and finding fault with others (Matt. 7:1-2).


Judge not, that ye be not judged.  For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged:  and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.




A.    Sin is never a good thing.  Sin always opposes the law of God (I John 3:4).


Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law:  for sin is the transgression of the law.


B.      The Jewish leaders noted that what this woman had done was a violation of the Law of Moses (John 8:5a).


Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned…


1.      Under Moses’ Law, adultery was a sin that deserved the punishment of death (Lev. 20:10).


And the man that committeth adultery with another man’s wife, even he that committeth adultery with his neighbor’s wife, the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death.


2.      This woman committed adultery and deserved to be stoned to death.

3.      The Jews believed they had a very strong case to present to Jesus.


C.     The judgment against all sin is ultimately death (Ezek. 18:20).


The soul that sinneth, it shall die…


1.      All have sinned.

2.      Therefore, all deserve the sentence of death.




A.    It was the Jewish leaders who brought this woman and set her in their midst.

1.      Did they really care about this woman?

2.      Did they really care about the law that had been violated?


B.      They were merely using her sin to try to tempt Jesus (John 8:5b-6a).


…but what sayest thou?  This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him.


1.      The hearts of these men were evil.  In some manner, they wanted Jesus to oppose the Law

a.      Would Jesus cause her to be stoned without the adulterer being present?

b.      Would He simply forgive her sin?


C.     I have seen members of the church, especially preachers, use this same tactic on one another.  They bring the sin or false doctrine of another to you in order to see how you will respond so they can entrap you.


D.    Jesus did not immediately respond to their question (John 8:6b).


But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger he wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not.


1.      Most are concerned with the question:  “What did Jesus write on the ground?”  We will never know.

2.      Perhaps we should learn a lesson that Jesus teaches us.  Sometimes it is better to stop and think before we immediately reply to others.


E.      The Jews were persistent as men like this usually are.  Verse 7 tells us that “they continued asking him.”  “But what say ye?”  “But what say ye?”  “But what say ye?”


V.                ALL MEN HAVE SINNED


A.    After a period of time, Jesus “lifted up himself.” 

1.      Every ear present, including the ear of the adulteress, was listening.

2.      The Jews probably could not wait to hear what He had to say.  They just knew they had set a trap for him.


B.      Jesus’ answer, however, pointed out that all have sinned (John 8:7b).


...and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him cast the first stone.


1.      One point that is interesting is that Jesus did not dishonor the Law of Moses. 

a.      He did not say that this woman should not be stoned.

b.      He acknowledged that the sin was worthy of death.

2.      He only put one condition on the stoning.  Only those without sin could stone her.


C.     Three things followed.

1.      “And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground” (John 8:8).

2.      “And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last” (John 8:9a).

a.      Not one of these men could say they were without sin.

b.      Acknowledging it would be the hard part.

1)      The older, wiser men departed first.

2)      Eventually all of them left their presence.

3.      “…and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst” (John 8:9b).

a.      While we are in this life, this is the best place in which we can find ourselves, alone in our sin in the presence of Jesus.

b.      Remember, Jesus came to seek and to save that which was lost” (Luke 19:10).




A.    There is not one sin that is so horrible that is cannot be forgiven by Jesus Christ.


B.      Jesus notes that none of the accusers stayed to condemn the woman (John 8:10-11a).


When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers?  hath no man condemned thee?  She said, No man, Lord.


1.      These men seemed eager to have her stoned.

2.      The Jews were the ones who reminded Jesus of what the Law of Moses said about the sin of adultery.

3.      Not one of them, however, stayed to stone her. 


C.     Jesus, then, offers His forgiveness (John 8:11b).


…And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee…


1.      Those words must have been music to the heart of this woman.

2.      She knew she was guilty.  She had stood in that crowd of men with shame and embarrassment.

3.      She probably knew exactly what the law required.

4.      Now, Jesus said:  “Neither do I condemn thee.”


D.    Question:  How could Jesus do this?  The Law of Moses required death.

1.      Jesus was the author of the Law.

2.      That Law was about to be taken out of the way and a New Law was going to be given.

3.      Jesus came to shed His blood to ratify that New Covenant.

4.      While He was on earth, He, as God, had the power to forgive sins as He desired (Matt. 9:6).


But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgiven sins…


5.      Thus, He extended forgiveness to this woman taken in adultery.


E.      If Jesus can forgive this woman, He can also forgive us, but not in the same manner.  Now we must be saved by means of His blood (Rev. 1:5) and the gospel of Jesus Christ (Rom. 1:16-17).





A.    Jesus did not condemn this woman, but those words to her were not His last.


B.      His final words were:  “…go, and sin no more” (John 8:11c).

1.      Jesus affirms that she had sinned.

2.      He now exhorts her to sin no more.


C.     LESSON:  Sin does not have to have power over us.  Sin can and must be resisted and set aside from our lives (Rom. 6:6).


Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.




A.    Sin never presents a pretty picture once it is out in the open.


B.      Aren’t we glad that we have a Savior, one who can free us from sin and from the condemnation of sin?


C.     This adulterous woman is a picture of us all.

1.      We have sinned.

2.      We stand in need of forgiveness.

3.      Jesus is willing to forgive us instead of condemning us in this life.

a.      He does so through His blood (Rev. 1:5).

b.      He does so through the gospel of Jesus Christ (Rom. 1:16-17).