Reading the Gospels opens wide the eyes to realize how drastically different their culture is from ours. They were a culture of shame and honor. If you don’t understand their culture you won’t understand why they did what they did. When you do understand their culture it helps you to see in full color why Jesus said what he said and did what he did. In John chapter 8 Jesus is teaching in the temple in the early morning hours and people were coming to him to hear him. In the midst of his teaching in the temple court, a very public place, the religious leaders of the day brought a woman caught in adultery, set her in the center of the court, and told Jesus the crime she had committed. They added their exclamation point by saying, “ now in the law Moses commanded us to stone such women; What then do you say?” (John 8:5). They didn’t care about the woman they wanted to find out what Jesus believed about the law of Moses. They had no problem shaming that woman what they had a problem with is that all the people hung on Jesus’s teachings and this took the people away from them and drew them to Jesus himself.
What would you have said? What would you have done? You’ve got the religious leaders on their turf in the temple, quoting the law of Moses, with all eyes on you and a woman caught in the very act of adultery laying in the center of the court for all to see. When we put our self in the story, with all its cultural nuances and traumatic language, it brings out the beauty, the majesty, the wisdom, and the glory of God to such a measure that it causes us the reader to stand in awe of this man Jesus that we call king of kings and Lord of lords.
Listen to what Jesus said, “He who is without sin among you, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.” Selah! (John 8:7).