My daily exploration of the Bible, taking it one chapter at a time. If I do it everyday, it'll take 1189 days.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

John 8

Stoning and I am

They brought a sinful woman before Jesus, and asked if she should be stoned according to the law. Jesus said that only perfect people could do that. No-one was perfect, so she was saved.

Jesus claimed himself as the world's light, and was his own witness. He said the leaders didn't know his Father, because they don't know Jesus. Jesus is not from the world. Those of the world will die covered in sin unless they accept Jesus.

They claimed that they were always free as Abraham's descendants. Jesus said that every sinner was a slave to sin. They didn't like hearing that.

Those who disagree with Jesus have Satan as their father. Jesus said he could give eternal life, and people didn't like the fact that he was claiming to be better than Abraham, but he said that God himself glorifies him. He was around even before Abraham.

They tried to kill him but he proved more slippery than a vasoline-coated ninja.

Key verse:
58. "I tell you the truth," Jesus answered, "before Abraham was born, I am!"

The first story about the woman caught in sin was not originally in John. It has been found in Luke in some early manuscripts. It appears to have been a very early story of something Jesus did that wasn't officially in any of the gospels, but was put there because it was told by all (most) early Christians. Jesus' compassion is clear here. In no way does he say that the sin is okay, yet he still shows grace. I haven't watched the videos, but this article tells of an absolutely brutal honour stoning in Kurdistan of a woman who eloped with the Muslim man she loved. She had converted to his religion. They say that the world doesn't need Jesus.

The other main thing going on in this chapter is Jesus' bold statement about himself in regard to God and Abraham. He uses the big "I am". Some people don't believe that Jesus is referring to the Tetragrammaton here, but he is using the exact same language of the Septuagint in Exodus 3. It otherwise doesn't make heaps of sense in the Greek. Given that this statement makes people try to stone him shows that he is, perhaps in a subtle way, referring to his Yahwist divinity.


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