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I have had enough of these misquotations of the Bible. Bill Burk's comment in defense of same-sex partner health benefits is way off the mark (Sunday's Juneau Empire). He told Michael Shakespeare, "The Bible states let he who is without sin cast the first stone."
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Yes, this is in fact from the Bible and are some of the words of Jesus Christ to a group of Pharisees who had caught a woman in the act of adultery. The historical record starts in John 8:2. The Pharisees wanted to stone her to death, but Jesus said, "He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her."
After he spoke, the power of his statement went straight to their hearts, and being convicted by their own guilty consciences, backed away and left Jesus and the woman alone. It was a stroke of God-inspired genius, and the effect was protective, cleansing and liberating for the woman.
The problem with same-sex benefits promoters using this verse is this: They don't consider its context. In verse 10, you can see that after the woman's accusers had left, Jesus said: "Woman, where are those thine accusers? Hath no man condemned thee?" And she said, "No man Lord." Then Jesus said unto her, "Neither do I condemn thee: Go and sin no more."
Twice now in this debate over gay partner benefits, I have seen the misuse of this verse. What Jesus said to her accusers and later to her were beautiful things. But he did not excuse her from the sin of adultery! What he told her accusers was not a license for her to go on committing adultery. He followed up with, "Go and sin no more." Why did he tell her not to do it again? Because adultery is wrong.
So, don't go quoting Jesus unless you are going to quote all that he said in a specific scriptural situation, for you may get egg on your face.
Please don't use the Bible to promote an agenda that is in strict opposition to biblical edicts regarding homosexuality. The Bible itself has clearly already done the judging on this subject. Anyone who uses the Bible as a standard is not being judgmental, for the author of the Bible has already done the judging. We are just following the leader. Selah, Hebrew for: "Consider these words."
Kevin C. Nye