My Cheating Heart


In John 8:11, Jesus offers no condemnation but compassionately calls the woman to turn from her sin.

Read: John 8:1-11 & James 4:4

We tend to think today’s society has the market cornered on sexual sin. Barely clad swimsuit models strike provocative poses on magazine covers. Porn addiction is real, and it seems affairs are becoming commonplace. What a heavy reality!

Yet the Bible confirms sexual sin has long been in man’s repertoire of skeletons in the closet. In fact, in John 8 we are allowed to witness Jesus’s interaction with a woman caught in adultery (v. 1-11). And those of us who haven’t committed that particular sin can read her story and unwittingly pat ourselves on the backs for being morally superior…

That is until we look at the big picture of God’s Word and camp on what it means to be spiritually adulterous. James calls out those of us who cheat on God with the shiny things of this world, its buffet of hollow options: “You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God” (4:4).

So when I read John 8 and I’m really honest with myself, I realize that I am the woman caught in adultery. I often cheat on Him, treasuring comfort and indulgence and possessions and recognition and relationships above Him. At times I can be quick to set up idols in my life; her story is mine.

And regardless of how literally we can claim her story, His response to our sin is the same. In John 8:11, Jesus offers no condemnation but compassionately calls the woman to turn from her sin. He does the same to us. And I happen to believe she went away changed by her encounter with Him; we can too.

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