Lenten Prayer Reflection by Benjamin Rispoli

Apr 07 2014

JN 8: 1-11
Throughout the Gospels that Scripture provides us, Jesus is shown leading his people by example. Jesus is constantly showing us how to live a proper Christian life, a life centered on love and forgiveness. In John’s Gospel, people begin to gather around Jesus and listen to his teachings. While this is occurring, Scribes and Pharisees present to Jesus a woman who has been caught in the very act of committing adultery. The people wanted to put Jesus to the test in order to see if his verdict would be in accordance to Moses’ law of stoning the woman to death. As the crowd anticipated an answer, Jesus responds with this distinguished instruction, “Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” Slowly the crowd began to disperse, starting with the elders. Once everyone departed, Jesus approached the woman directly and stated that she is forgiven of the sin she committed, but she must not sin any more.

The key theme to this gospel is forgiveness. No one is free from sin. Sin is inevitable. The greatest people that walked this earth have sinned, yet they learned from their mistakes. In John 2: 16-18 Jesus sinned as he reprimanded the merchants that disrespected his father’s temple. It is significant to note that the elders of the village, those that are considered most respected, have sinned and therefore are the initial people to leave from the crowd. The crowd surrenders to Jesus, and we must do the same. Jesus forgives others to indicate that we should follow in his footsteps and forgive others as well. Each time we pray the Our Father we state that we will forgive others by proclaiming: “…as we forgive those that trespass against us…” We must always show sympathy and compassion for others. Remember the sins you made in order to learn from them and improve for the future, but do not ignore your mistakes. Always remember that in order to be forgiven, we must first forgive.