The author is against all sin. I agree totally with Paul.
What then? Are we to sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means! Romans 6:15 ESV
1) There are at least two times where we find Jesus telling people to “sin no more.” In John 5:14, Jesus is talking to the man that was ill for 38 years laying by the pool of Bethesda and adds “that nothing worse may happen to you.”
Afterward Jesus found him in the temple and said to him, “See, you are well! Sin no more, that nothing worse may happen to you.” John 5:14 ESV
With this blind man, even the disciples thought his blindness might be God's doing because of sin. But Jesus essentially tells them this is not how God operates, correcting their thinking and image of God who brings healing, not disease and suffering.
As He passed by, He saw a man blind from birth. And His disciples asked Him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he would be born blind?” Jesus answered, “It was neither that this man sinned, nor his parents; but it was so that the works of God might be displayed in him. John 9:1-3 NAS
In John 8:11 we see our main verse and the woman caught in adultery that Jesus does not condemn. Quite often when I point out the love, compassion, grace and no condemnation from Jesus towards us, people respond, "but Jesus said go and sin no more too." I agree we are not to sin just because we are under grace and no longer under the law - Rom 6:14. But many imply, believe and teach that any future condemnation Jesus is referring to will be from God. In other words, sin no more, that nothing worse may happen to you, from God. This thinking is especially ironic because the bad thing that happened in the first place was from self-righteous letter of the law enforcing men and not from God. Jesus, a friend of sinners - Matt 11:19, was her healer and her rescuer, the bringer of love, compassion and no condemnation.
Jesus stood up and said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you; go, and from now on sin no more.” John 8:10-11 ESV
Those who imply God will get you if you sin more, are usually sincere in wanting to please God, they believe God may get you is true. The error I believe they are making, have been led to believe by many in the church, is that you need to balance grace with law. Mixing the Old Covenant of law with the New Covenant of grace and truth, and these do not mix. The New Covenant fully replaced the Old.
But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works, otherwise grace is no longer grace. Rom 11:6 NAS
This study is designed to clear God of the charge of wanting to bring condemnation when a believer sins.
2) Many teach “go and sin no more” is a warning from God that if you sin some more, God will not be so easy on you. Some even claim Jesus is alluding to the fact that a person can lose their salvation by sinning. There is another option, though. An option that I believe fits much better with scripture and what we see in Jesus.
This study deals solely with the claim that God is going to get you if you sin more. I am not advocating sin. I agree with Paul completely in Rom 6:15. I also agree with Pauls teaching in Rom 6:14 that believers are no longer under the law but under grace where sin is not imputed - Heb 8:12, Rom 4:15.
First off, to conclude that Jesus is stating that God is going to punish the person if they sin more, the reader must add words that are not in the verse. It does not say God is going to make worse things happen to you.
3) Opposing Covenants – Old Covenant – New Covenant
For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. John 1:17 ESV
There were two groups involved in this incident, those who walked by the letter of the law (Pharisee’s) trusting in Moses, and Jesus who was called a friend of sinners and walked by the Spirit of the law, which is love (Rom 13:8-10, Gal 5:14). The contrast between what man wants to do and what God wants to do is abundantly clear in the story of the woman caught in the very act of adultery. Scripture is full of examples of this contrast.
Letter of the Law.
The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery, and placing her in the midst they said to him, “Teacher, this woman has been caught in the act of adultery. Now in the Law, Moses commanded us to stone such women. John 8:3-5a ESV
Spirit of the law.
Jesus stood up and said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you John 8:10-11a ESV
The parties were opposed, the Pharisee represented Moses and ministered the letter of the law of sin and death, while Jesus represented grace and truth and ministered the Spirit of the law that brings life.
who has made us sufficient to be ministers of a new covenant, not of the letter (like the Pharisee's) but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit (as Jesus did) gives life. 2 Cor 3:6 ESV (emphasis mine)
For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. Rom 8:2 ESV
4) Do you remember the several times Jesus healed on the Sabbath infuriating the Pharisees who would always point to the letter of the law? Or the good Samaritan story Jesus told, where the Pharisee walked on the other side of the road because the letter of the law would not let him associate with a Gentile?
The Pharisee’s hated those who could not hide their sin as well as they could. They hated those caught in obvious outward sin. They were constantly judging others by the letter of the law, while personally justifying their actions and showing grace to themselves for their sins. They were keen on enforcing the letter of the law to the maximum. They believed that was their charge by God and God was happy with their work.
The Pharisee's expressed utter contempt and hatred towards other men at God’s altar who they judged as worse than themselves. This self-justification for their own sins they viewed as smaller while judging others by the letter of the law, is why Jesus called them hypocrites and whitewashed tombs full of dead man's bones.
The Pharisee, standing by himself, prayed thus: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. Luke 18:11 ESV
The Pharisee’s ministry was one of condemnation and death by the letter of the law. Jesus ministry was one of walking by the Spirit of the law, which is love (Rom 3:18, Gal 5:14).
5) Jesus was constantly hanging out with the law-breakers, showing them compassion, mercy, grace and truth; just like he did the woman caught in adultery.
The LORD redeems the life of his servants; none of those who take refuge in him will be condemned. Psalm 34:22 ESV
There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. Rom 8:1 ESV
Jesus knew it was God’s kindness that leads to repentance.
Or do you presume on the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance? Rom 2:4 ESV
6) Today, I do not believe Jesus was warning the woman caught in adultery that if she sinned again, God would not be so forgiving. God’s very nature is reflected in what he tells man to do.
and if he sins against you seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, saying, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive him.” Luke 17:4 ESV
7) I believe the evidence supports that Jesus was warning her to go and sin no more because the Pharisee’s, the letter of the law keepers, those opposed to grace for others, were always watching, seeking to accuse and judge.
The Pharisees and the teachers of the law were looking for a reason to accuse Jesus, so they watched him closely to see if he would heal on the Sabbath. Luke 6:7 NIV
The same truth applies today as there are Pharisee's watching. Man's law is also watching and if you are a Chrisitan and break man's law, there are still consequences.
8) It is the letter of law and those who represent the letter of the law that bring charges and condemnation.
Do not think that I (Jesus) will accuse you to the Father. There is one who accuses you: Moses, on whom you have set your hope. John 5:45 ESV
9) Jesus did not come to accuse and judge; he came to save.
If anyone hears my (Jesus) words and does not keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world but to save the world. John 12:47 ESV
You judge according to the flesh; I (Jesus) judge no one. John 8:15 ESV
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. John 3:16-17 ESV
10) The only ones who need to fear being judged by God in this story are the Pharisee’s and all who refuse to trust in and flee to the Savor for safety.
Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. John 3:18 ESV
11) The final nail in the coffin for believers who claim “something worse may happen to you” is speaking of God’s punishment if you sin again, is the fact that Jesus took away sins power to condemn us. The letter of the law that Satan and the self-righteous like the Pharisee’s, then and now, used to accuse, judge and condemn. The letter of the law can only bring condemnation and death.
The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 1 Cor 15:56 ESV
And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross. He disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in him.Col 2:13-15 ESV
He set us free from the law of sin and death and placed us under grace where sin has no power over us.
There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. Rom 8:1-2 ESV
For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace. Rom 6:14 ESV
12) Christians are to be more like Jesus who does not remember our sins, not the Pharisee’s. We are supposed to reach out with love and grace to those deceived by self-righteousness, in hopes that some may be saved.
who has made us sufficient to be ministers of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life. 2 Cor 3:6 ESV
But now we are released from the law, having died to that which held us captive, so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit and not in the old way of the written code. Rom 7:6 ESV
that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. 2 Cor 5:19 ESV
“I, I am he who blots out your transgressions for my own sake, and I will not remember your sins. Isaiah 43:25 ESV
from the least of them to the greatest of them," declares the LORD, "for I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more." Jer 31:34b
For I will be merciful toward their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more. Heb 8:12
then he adds, “I will remember their sins and their lawless deeds no more. Heb 10:17
Blessed is the one whose sin the Lord will NEVER (ou mē) count against them. Rom 4:8 NIV
Love does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 1 Cor 13:5
Read: Letter Kills, Spirit Gives Life
Do You Know the Spirit of All of God's Laws?
Christians Are Not Qualified to be Ministers of the Letter of the Law
Holy Spirit Does Not Convict a Believer of Their Sins
Believers are Never Called Sinners in the New Testament
Christians Are Released from The Ten Commandments
Christians Are Not Under the Law of Moses, Our Standard is Much Higher
Jesus is The End of The Law for Believers
What then? Are we to sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means! Romans 6:15 ESVRead more New Covenant Bible studies: NEW COVENANT ARTICLE LINKS