Let he who is without sin ...

Discussion in 'Religion' started by ThazzarBaal, Jun 27, 2023.

  1. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

    Have you seen the film Monty Python's Life of Brian?

    If not, please look it up and watch it immediately. It might give you some insight into why a crowd might stone a complete stranger. And into some other stuff, as well.
    Maybe she said "Jehovah", too.
    The way the bible is suggesting, you mean?
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  3. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    "Worse?? How could it be worse? Jehovah! Jehovah!"
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  5. Pinball1970 Registered Senior Member

    The woman taken in adultery is made up, a later addendum, so the question is moot.
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  7. exchemist Valued Senior Member

    Well it is generally considered a later addendum, certainly. However that does not necessarily make it any more "made up" than the rest of St John's gospel. Some authorities apparently think the evangelist added it himself, in a revised edition.

    There is of course an argument that the whole of St John's gospel is "made up", as it is not one of the synoptic gospels, being written far later and containing a suspicious degree of theological content that is absent from the others. But that is probably part of its appeal to Christians. I certainly find it the most interesting of the four.
    Pinball1970 likes this.
  8. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

    No, I think the point had more to do with how Jesus treated the woman in that moment, as compared to how society did. And that people who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones, etc…

    It’s weird though, how civilizations over the centuries all seemed obsessed with sexual scandals, even today.
  9. exchemist Valued Senior Member

    Regardless of how it came to be written, it is one of my favourite stories from the New Testament. "Neither do I condemn you. Go, and sin no more."
    wegs likes this.
  10. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

  11. Pinball1970 Registered Senior Member

    Around the 10th Century so nearly 1000 years away from the life of Jesus.
    The moot part was referring to what Jesus said and did, the story could be Aesop or from Confucius.
    The moral of the story is clear enough, judge yourself before judging others and perhaps be prepared to show some mercy rather than retribution.
    I agree.
    I am reading about Jesus and the Bible, it is far more interesting to me now that I am an atheist.
  12. exchemist Valued Senior Member

    According to this: https://www.bibleodyssey.org/passages/main-articles/the-woman-caught-in-adultery-john-81-11/. the story was first included in the c.5th (Codex Bezae). So about 400 years after Christ.
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2023
    Pinball1970 likes this.
  13. Pinball1970 Registered Senior Member

    Yes, there references to the story in various forms but the full story as we know it started appearing I bulk in the text around 10th century.

    A quick google you can see the references and then where they pile up at the 10thC.

    Bart Ehrman has discussed it and said scribes may have made a reference to story in the margin when copying the texts and later scribes put it in the actual cannon.

    It did not appear in our “earliest and best manuscripts till the 10th century,” Is the quote.

    I think the theme suits one image of Jesus as merciful, but also taking on the hypocrisy of the established religious hierarchy.

    I will try and find the reference to the debate where he discusses it and post as a link.
    exchemist likes this.
  14. ThazzarBaal Registered Senior Member

    You really think that? They were said to be ready to stone her to death and wanted to see if Jesus would once again defy their laws. It wouldn't add up for there to be nothing incriminating regarding those about to throw them. She, as I recall was a prostitute, so who among them was without the same sin they were accusing her of? They called her out and he called them out. They dropped the stones, but Jesus did get penalized and lost his life for being that stand up guy.
  15. gmilam Valued Senior Member

    Where does it say she was a prostitute?
  16. C C Consular Corps - "the backbone of diplomacy" Valued Senior Member

    Didymus's account, perhaps garnered both from the "Gospel of the Hebrews" (when it survived intact) and from circulating oral narratives -- didn't specifically identify her "sin" even as adultery. But it seems more likely than that other "forbidden activity" which Judean society so routinely ignored.

    Prostitution was common even before Roman occupation, and apparently tolerated more than adultery. Sex workers were so banal that it was actually two harlots who sought "Solomon's judgement" -- not "two [ordinary] women" as the prudishly-correct articles sometimes put it.

    Pericope Adulterae (PA): Jesus and the woman taken in adultery.

    Although oral storytelling of the PA could have been circulating around before the 4th century, a written source or inspiration for its interpolation in the Gospel of John could have been the "Gospel of the Hebrews", which was written in the 2nd-century. Only fragments remain of that manuscript.

    Didymus was supposedly well familiar with the "Gospel of the Hebrews", later deemed non-canonical.

    Didymus the Blind: It is related in some gospels that a woman was condemned by the Jews because of a sin and was taken to the customary place of stoning, in order that she might be stoned. We are told that when the Savior caught sight of her and saw that they were ready to stone her, he said to those who wanted to throw stones at her: Let the one who has not sinned, lift a stone and throw it. If someone is certain that he has not sinned, let him take a stone and hit her. And no one dared to do so. When they examined themselves and they recognized that they too bore responsibility for certain actions, they did not dare to stone her. --Commentary on Ecclesiastes

    Augustine's theory that some early copies of the Gospel of John had deliberately removed the PA is not as highly regarded these days, for other reasons than just signs of a different author being responsible for those passages.

    Austin Doucette: [Augustine's] quote reaffirms that by the fourth century, the PA was contentiously present in some manuscripts of John’s Gospel. That a variety of manuscripts existed both with and without the story is readily apparent. Should one assume the PA was excised from John due to scribal misgivings regarding Jesus’ leniency on sexual sin? While we might observe the sexual ethic of Augustine’s time was strict and valued chastity and fidelity, this historical, redaction criticism claim is frankly a baseless theory. Early textual excision would be apparent from the manuscript evidence.

    [...] As has been shown, the Latin Fathers almost unanimously viewed the PA as subversive in its sexual ethic. Does this represent a history of purposeful excision due to a strict moral framework within the church?

    This so called “suppression theory” fails under scrutiny when one acknowledges various passages not excised from the text of John. Certainly, if there was an aversion to leniency regarding female sexual sin, scribes would have first removed John 4:1–45. Herein we find a blatant picture of Christ ministering to the Samaritan woman, who was herself an adulterer. Many such targets for redaction are only limited by the imagination.

    Further, the rigorous and defined philology of scribes counts against this theory, “Such an editor may have chosen to mark copies of John with the passage in some way—and indeed, such marks do accompany the pericope in later Byzantine manuscripts—but deletion was outside of the scope of established critical methods.”
    --The Inauthenticity of the Pericope Adulterae
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2023
  17. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

    I think Jesus called them out because they weren’t “perfect” (no one was without flaws of their own) and people who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones, quite literally in this case. I don’t believe Jesus was making distinctions - it seemed to be more of a lesson of “take the log out of your own eye, then you’ll see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.” (Matthew 7:5)

    There are different interpretations, I suppose.
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2023
  18. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member


    Try anime. She generally just needs to be unmarried and surviving without a man. That's pretty much all it takes. And anime, they just try to make her look hotter; at least she's not ugly until she actually turns into a demon, and half the time, they try to make her look sexy, anyway.

    And, five years later, the dope run story↗ still works.
  19. ThazzarBaal Registered Senior Member

    So, these people were so compelled that they chose to not throw the stones based on a simple epiphany that they were sinners too? Hmm, well ... What about measure and meet? The judge not lest ye be judged aspect of Jesus' way of making a point, which takes me to another point in question ... How intimidating was he or how intimidating were they?

    Jesus, a known antagonist from Nazareth where nothing good comes from, a tax collector, some fishermen (a very rugged type) and a thief (if I'm not mistaken) none of whom seemed to be shy about stirring things up a little. An eye for an eye mindset shared by most during that time, a what measure you meet mindset on Jesus and his group of unsavory friends all in present day play, playing out as current events a couple thousand years ago.
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2023
  20. Ukiah Registered Member

    Adultery is the act of cheating on your spouse .
  21. Pinball1970 Registered Senior Member

    I was curious so I have pasted John Chapter 8 to see if we get an inkling.

    Bearing in mind this was originally written in Greek so something may be lost.

    First point prostitute/harlot is not mentioned.

    Mary Magdalene is not mentioned either.

    “was taken in adultery, in the very act.” Is the key phrase as there is debate as to what adultery means. We know today but in first century Palestine?

    “adultery consists of sexual intercourse between a man and a married woman who is not his lawful wife”

    Also “according to the Hebrew Bible, adultery is not committed if the female participant is unmarried (unless she is betrothed to be married[3]), while the marital status of the male participant is irrelevant (he himself could be married or unmarried to another woman).”

    So, from that, the woman must be married?

    [3] And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst,

    [4] They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act.

    [5] Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou?

    [6] This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not.

    [7] So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.

    [8] And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground.

    [9] And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.

    [10] When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee?

    [11] She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more
  22. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member

    Not necessarily; your construction suggests a married man can be with the right other woman so it's not adultery. As to the story, it is also possible the unnamed male participant was caught raping a woman. Remember, it's scribes and Pharisees trying to test Jesus; see John 7↱.

    Alternately, maybe it's the origin story for a Kahana joke.
  23. Pinball1970 Registered Senior Member

    Rape is a possibility although that is discussed in the OT, so if that was happening it could have been mentioned that way.

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