Sunday, March 26, 2023

Sunday Praise & Worship Message - Love, Grace and Mercy

I want to share with you a story from the gospel of John that is often referred to as the story of the adulteress brought before Jesus. In this story, we see the love, grace, and mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ in action.

The story begins with a group of religious leaders who bring before Jesus a woman who had been caught in the act of adultery. They claimed that according to the law of Moses, she should be stoned to death. They were testing Jesus, hoping to trap him into saying something that would discredit him.
But instead of answering them, Jesus stooped down and began to write on the ground with his finger. When the religious leaders continued to question him, Jesus stood up and said to them, “All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!” (John 8:7, NLT)

Upon hearing this, one by one, the accusers began to leave until there was no one left but the woman standing before Jesus. Jesus then asked her, “Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?” “No, Lord,” she said. And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.” (John 8:10-11, NLT)

What can we learn from this story? First and foremost, we see the love and compassion of Jesus towards this woman who had sinned. Instead of condemning her, he showed her grace and mercy. Jesus did not come into this world to condemn us, but to save us (John 3:17).

In today's world, we are constantly bombarded with messages of judgment, criticism, and division. Social media and news outlets often focus on highlighting the flaws and shortcomings of others, and it can be easy to fall into the trap of judging and condemning those who we perceive as different from us.

But as Christians, we are called to live differently. We are called to follow the example of Jesus Christ, who came into the world not to condemn it but to save it. This means that we should approach others with a spirit of love and compassion, rather than judgment and condemnation.

We also see that Jesus did not ignore the sin of the woman. He acknowledged it and told her to go and sin no more. In the same way, Jesus does not overlook our sins but calls us to repent and turn away from them.

Finally, we see that the religious leaders who brought the woman before Jesus were more concerned with trapping him than with upholding the law of Moses. They were hypocrites who were quick to judge others but failed to see their own sins. Let us not be like them but instead, let us be quick to show love, mercy, and compassion to others.

Jesus said, “Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. For you will be treated as you treat others. The standard you use in judging is the standard by which you will be judged.” Matthew 7:1-2 (NLT). 
When we judge others, we run the risk of being judged ourselves. The standard we use in judging others is the standard by which we will be judged. This means that if we are harsh, critical, and unforgiving towards others, we may find that others are equally harsh, critical, and unforgiving towards us.

But if we show love, compassion, and understanding to others, we may find that others are more likely to show us the same. Jesus said, "Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy" (Matthew 5:7, NLT).

Jesus taught us to listen to others with an open mind and heart, even if we disagree with them. It means being willing to extend grace and forgiveness to those who have wronged us, just as God has forgiven us. And it means being willing to show love and compassion to those who are struggling, rather than judgment and condemnation.

In a world that often seems divided and hostile, we can be a light of God's love and mercy. By embodying the teachings of Jesus, we can bring hope and healing to those around us. So let us strive to live out these words of Jesus in our daily lives, and may we be a reflection of his love and mercy to all those we encounter.

Let us show love, grace, and mercy to others, just as Jesus showed to the adulteress brought before him. By living the teachings of Jesus and showing others mercy and compassion, we can stand firm in His grace.

May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.

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