They kept demanding an answer, so he stood up again and said, “All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!”
~John 8:7, NLT
If Jesus is the Son of God, his teachings are more than just good ideas from a wise teacher; they are divine insights on which I can confidently build my life.”
John chapter 8 is a confrontation between Jesus and the Jewish religious establishment. Jesus stayed in Bethany at night but early each morning He came to the Temple where he would teach and heal. A lot of things about Jesus was upsetting to the JRE; He was from Nazareth in Galilee. The JRE looked down on Galileans like Yankee’s look down of folks from the South. Nazareth, of all the cites in Galilee was probably the poorest. Remember Nathaniel’s remark, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” The JRL felt the say way: nothing good could come from Galilee, especially Nazareth. But the real kicker that ticked the JRE was Jesus insistence that He was the Son of God and the long awaited Prophet that Moses spoke about. Most of chapter eight is about Jesus profession of Sonship and the JRE arguing with Him about His identity.
Let’s just be honest, if someone came up to you at church, in town, or at a sporting event and said, “I know where I came from and I know where I am going. I am the Son of God. He has sent me here on a mission.” It would be a hard pill to swallow and we would probably write them off as a nut. Of course we have a huge advantage, we know the Messiah has already come and they did not have such knowledge. So how is it that God will hold them accountable for rejecting Christ? I’m not sure I can answer this question completely but I want to give it a shot. The JRE was turning a deaf ear to all that Jesus was teaching. They were not listening like the general public. Jesus was teaching with divine authority, like no other in history and practically everyone picked up on this except the JRE. Not only did they ignore His word, they ignored his deeds and both spoke with power. They used all forms of rationalization to explain away the miracles He was doing. They even claimed that Jesus got this supernatural power from Satan which makes absolutely no sense whatever. Satan has no reputation for doing good and he is too intelligent to destroy himself by giving someone power to cast out his demons who are his servants.
There is one other thing that I want to mention. There is a lot of emphasis on “ONE” in this chapter. You do not see this until you read the modern versions. The the JRE brought the woman caught in the act of adultery and spoke of Moses law of stoning such a one, Jesus said, “All right, but let the ONE who has never sinned throw the first stone!” Then John says, they left ONE by ONE beginning with the oldest. Then is verse 46 in the LNT, Jesus said, “Which of you can truthfully accuse me of ONE sin? And since I am telling you the truth, why don’t you believe me? ” Of everyone present that day, Jesus was the only ONE in a position to judge and He choose to forgive. What did Jesus write in the dirt? Some have suggested he was making a list of the sins of the JRE. I’m going to bet they were a group of dirty-minded old men and perhaps the oldest had the most guilt. But the point is: Jesus challenged them to find ONE sin in His life and they were speechless. They could not accuse Him of a single thing, not ONE. The fact that they could find no sin in Jesus should have given them a clue to who He was but somehow they missed it.