Many of our readers will recognize the name Paul Harvey. If you do not, odds are you heard his voice a few years ago on a ‘God Made A Farmer’ Super Bowl advertisement. Regardless, Harvey was known for a number of things, including his The Rest Of The Story news segments. I’ve been thinking a lot about that phrase, “the rest of the story.” That’s because there is a story in the Bible where we tend to overlook how it ends.
In the eight chapter of John’s Gospel, Jesus enters the temple, sits down and begins teaching the people:
“And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst,
They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act.
Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou?
This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not.
So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.
And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground.
And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst (John 8:3-9).”
And now for the rest of the story…
When Jesus stands and sees everyone has left but the woman, he asks her the whereabouts of her accusers.
“Has no one condemned you?” He asks.
“No, Lord” she responds.
“Neither do I,” says the Lord. “Go, and sin no more.”
The reason I’m writing this today is because many people, Christians or not, talk about this event in scripture. They focus on the fact that “we’re all sinners,” and how we should not judge. All that is true, but we fail to see Christ’s instruction for this person to “go and sin no more.”
Yes, people who repent and ask Jesus to be their Lord and Savior are saved. But that does not mean we are to continue in our sin(s). Meanwhile, we are expected to share the Gospel with others (Mark 16:15). What is the Gospel? It’s the good news of Jesus Christ, God’s only begotten Son, who was sent to die for all mankind so that people who believe in Him can have everlasting life (John 3:16). Why should we trust Him? Because we are all sinners facing a debt we can’t pay (Romans 3:23, 6:23).
In order for other people to see the need for the Savior, they have to know about sin. When we have these opportunities, people will sometimes say we should not judge or “throw stones.” If that happens to you, respond by saying, “Sure, but let me tell you the rest of the story.”