When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.” John 8:7
It kinda made me mad. I know there are a multitude of things in the world that make us mad and there are also degrees of madness—boy is that a play on words. There is a little mad, some mad, half mad and downright mad. Well, anyway, I was just a little mad. Back on the first Monday in January, I started walking again for exercise. Since the weather is so unpredictable, I decided to just use the treadmill. It isn’t as good as the outdoors but you sure can work up a sweat. So, five or six days a week I have my date with “the mill.” I have a television mounted right in front of me to keep my mind busy while I walk. With all the new streaming services there is a lot to watch.
One of my favorite things is something called “Aerial America.” They take a particular state and with a drone and/or helicopter they fly all over the state and shoot video. It is very interesting and stunning but there was a problem. Because it was filmed from the air, I had a hard time staying on the treadmill. They would go up and down, left and right and I was all over the place with them. You know…where you stare you steer. Maybe I needed to find something else to watch while walking on the treadmill. I decided it would be a great opportunity to get some good Bible teaching, so I started watching services from some of the guys I like. It has been very profitable.
Different guys have different styles and I always try and pick speakers that stay close to the Bible and there are a couple that have large ministries and by and large do a great job teaching. Now, I never agree with everything that every speaker says. In fact, I teach every Sunday and guess what? I don’t always agree with me. It’s just a fact of life so if you teach publicly get ready for someone to say something. I get that. But then there was this morning.
As I was looking for something to watch from one of the guys I follow, I saw something that just about made me mad. Some no-name guy, a pastor, teacher posted a video calling this nationally known speaker a “false teacher.” Well, I didn’t watch his video because it wasn’t worth my time. But I wondered exactly what caused him to say that this guy wasn’t the real deal. Now again, I don’t always agree with everything this teacher says nor how he says it but “false teacher?” I don’t think so. He leads one of the largest evangelical churches in America. He teaches the Bible and at the end of every service he has a time for people to act on what they heard and specially, to act on an invitation to accept Jesus’ invitation to follow Him. He gives an old-fashioned altar call.
Oh, and one other amazing thing. Everything this church produces, sermons, curriculum, music, you name it—they give it all away for free. His church could make a zillion dollars but instead with incredible generosity they just give it away. I find that amazing. So, what’s up with the dude who made himself judge and jury? If I were to take a guess it would probably be jealousy. When someone is successful some people just assume that they are fake or false. It seems the more successful a ministry is, the more people cast stones. Cast stones…hmmm. It seems like Jesus had something to say about that. Remember?
There was a woman in the Bible taken in the very act of adultery. The Pharisees (we won’t go there) dragged her out in public in front of Jesus and declared, “Moses said we should stone this woman. What do you say?” First, and always, don’t mess with Jesus. You will lose. But Jesus stooped down and wrote something in the sand, (we don’t know what), and then said, “Okay.” Well, that wasn’t all He said. The rest rattled their bones. He said, “Okay, but the person without sin needs to cast the first stone.” You could hear a pin drop, but then you would have heard something else—the sound of rocks falling to the ground. And, beginning with the oldest to the youngest, they left—all of them. Jesus looked at the woman and said, “Where are your accusers?” They had skedaddled. And here’s the best part. The One who was left, Jesus, the One who could condemn her—didn’t. Amazing.
I know it is our natural tendency to chuck rocks but don’t you think maybe it is time to let the rocks fall. Whether you are a Jesus follower or not, chucking rocks is a dangerous game. Those rocks can act like boomerangs—and that will definitely leave a mark. Should we practice a discerning spirit? Absolutely. But rock chucking has nothing to do with discerning—it has to do with a judgmental spirit. I know, those rocks can be hard to drop sometimes but I know someone who is good at dislodging them from our sticky hands. His name is Jesus, and you can take it to the bank, He’s got that too. Bro. Dewayne