Freedom from Sin’s Authority

John 8:1-12 is the story of the woman who was caught in adultery and brought publicly to Jesus. This was an intentional scenario by the self-righteous religious leaders to try to trap Jesus into requiring capital punishment [Deut. 22:22] or —if not—be considered permissive toward immorality. After Christ’s famous answer ”He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first,” the accusers left one by one.
“[Then] He said to her, ‘Woman, where are those accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you?”
She said, “No one, Lord.”
And Jesus said to her, “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more” (John 8:7,10,11).

Later in this chapter, “Jesus proclaimed: ‘If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free” (John 8:31, 32).

Dr. Charles Stanley explains the scope of the believer’s freedom from sin’s dominion.

“Consider these verses the believer’s emancipation proclamation. In verses 34–36, Jesus explains: “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son does remain forever. So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.” How are we liberated to live in Christ?

1. Through Jesus’ death on the Cross and resurrection, we are freed from the penalty of sin. Like the woman caught in adultery, we are no longer condemned for what we’ve done. Christ pays our sin-debt in full so that we can be reconciled to the Father (Rom. 5:10; 6:23; Col. 1:19–22).

2. We are released from the power of sin. Our sin nature no longer dominates us—leading us from one unsatisfying and destructive transgression to another. Rather, we are free to seek and know God through the power and presence of His Holy Spirit (Rom. 8:2–17). Jesus told the woman, “Go. From now on sin no more” (John 8:11), not as a terrible requirement for earning His forgiveness, but as a declaration of what is possible when we follow Him (1 Cor. 6:11–20).


3. We are liberated from the purpose of sin. James 1:15 tells us, “When sin is accomplished, it brings forth death.” The goal of our iniquity is usually to exalt ourselves or meet our own needs, but the outcome is always ruination. Perhaps this woman was seeking love, acceptance, or security, yet she was obviously going about getting it in the wrong way—destroying herself and her dignity. However, Christ sets us free to become everything God created us to be to His honor and glory (John 10:10; Eph. 2:10).


4. We are unshackled from the personality of sin. To the scribes and the Pharisees, this woman would always be known by the name “sinner,” and perhaps that is how she thought of herself as well. However, when Jesus comes into our lives, we are no longer known for our iniquities. Rather, we are recognized as belonging to the One who has covered our iniquities with His blood. Our transgressions are no longer our identity because Christ makes us into a new creation (Rom. 8:1; 2 Cor. 5:17).


What can you do to begin living in the freedom Jesus purchased for you on the Cross? There is no formula for discovering the richness of His truth. But by obeying and trusting in Him, you’ll be on the road to the liberated life He designed for you.” – Life Principles Bible notes.

May we have the confidence and wisdom to walk in freedom one day at a time.

Published by jbwoodward

John serves as Director of Counseling and Training for Grace Fellowship International. His main article archive is GraceNotebook.com

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