Don Not Condemn People

Bishop Mike Okonkwo’s Wisdom for the Day Devotional, March 14, 2024: Don’t Condemn People

“She said, no man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, neither do I condemn thee; go and sin no more”. – John 8:11 (KJV)

A lady was discovered to be an adulterer in today’s text. The error committed by those who apprehended Mary was to bring her to Jesus in the hopes that, following the judgment of the Old Testament, He would approve of their scheme. They failed to realize they were visiting the embodiment of Mercy.

How do you respond when someone exposes someone else’s faults to you—with mercy or without mercy? Do you think poorly of the person? Alternatively, do you provide a lifeline or a safety net so they may survive? Do you tell them, “I am better than you,” and tread on them? The number of people who were expelled from churches due to this Pharisaic mindset would astound you. The church was not the reason Jesus came. It was the world he came for. They will become the church when the world turns to Him. Is it better to embrace or dismiss sin? No, but look for ways to redeem the individual instead of methods to condemn them.

They brought the lady to Jesus, not the church. Churchgoers were waiting for the order to proceed while toting bulky stones. According to the law, we have to murder and stone her. The legislation is subtle in that it prohibits a woman from committing adultery by herself. Adultery requires two people to commit. All they brought was the woman. And just where was this man? The law constantly places blame for other people’s errors, never realizing that you are also holding some of the blame.

As people go inside the church, rejoice that they are there at all. As long as God’s word is being preached, something positive will happen.

Many years ago, I questioned the church what it would do when women started wearing pants to church and the generation with dreadlocks and earrings started attending. Are you going to drive them? It seemed ridiculous. During that period, women were afraid to wear pants, even within their houses. It’s occurring right now! The approach has evolved, but the message remains the same. Why should you judge someone harshly if Jesus did not?


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