Friday, July 8, 2011

Arrogance and Stones

I love the story of the woman who was caught in the act of adultery and dragged before Jesus.  In John 8, we see that the religious leaders hated Jesus for interrupting the status quo.  They were so full of themselves they failed to recognize their own God when he stood right in front of them.  In a foolish effort to entrap Jesus, they decided to test his enforcement of the law.  Somehow they managed to catch a woman in the midst of sexual passion with a man she wasn’t married to.  Nevermind the sting operation, Mosaic Law clearly provided that she be stoned to death for the sin of adultery.  They had complete legal authority to kill her, yet in an act of great spectacle they paraded her in front of Jesus and asked him what they should do. Jesus immediately recognized their devious intent.  These religious fanatics were not zealous about keeping God’s law; rather they were power hungry and arrogant.  So Jesus tells them to go ahead and stone her, “but the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!” 

This week, our nation watched as a jury acquitted Casey Anthony of the murder of her daughter.  In the court of public opinion, however, she was found guilty a long time ago, and now many are outraged that she was not convicted.  Across the nation voices are erupting with indignation over this perceived injustice.

I have no idea if Ms. Anthony is really guilty or not, but that’s not what concerns me.  As I digest the multitude of news clips and articles about her trial and its subsequent impact, what strikes me most is the arrogance displayed by those who decry her innocence.  Strangers have gone out of their way to make signs and protest outside of the courthouse.  One sign declared, “Casey deserves to burn in hell!”  Well, that may be true, but don’t we all?

Naturally, it should horrify us when a toddler is murdered.  Anytime a person is victimized in any fashion, we should find ourselves incensed.  But I’m reminded in this moment of how unfit I am to cast judgment upon anyone.  I say we take a hard look at ourselves and maybe loosen the grip on our stones.