“Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her.” . . . But when they heard it, they went away one by one, beginning with the older ones, and Jesus was left alone with the woman standing before him. John 8:7, 9 ESV
The modern idiom for this famous story of Jesus’ is “people who live in glass houses should not throw stones.” In other words a person should not criticize other people for faults they in turn may eventually be criticized for themselves. In this telling passage about a woman caught in the act of adultery, her accusers who drag her before Jesus are in the end faced with having to acknowledge their own sin and shortcomings. The Apostle Paul could not have summed it up more succinctly. “There is none righteous, no not one. . . For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:10, 23) That, my friend, is the common ground upon which we all stand.
Our sinful nature has a way of leveling the playing field when it comes to the whole issue of making judgments about intolerant behavior. In the story above, the woman’s accusers were intolerant of her sin while being unwittingly tolerant of their own. That is a common tendency in all of us, and not just the proprietary pitfall of the Pharisees.