But when confronted, Jesus assumed a submissive posture, going low, bending to the ground. Then He does the unthinkable; He inverts the situation to make it about the heart of each and every individual. He asks the crowd a simple question, that only they can answer internally, giving them the green light to kill the woman as their law allows IF they admit the impossible - true perfection - that they have never sinned themselves. And none can. In the flash of a moment, He requires them to achieve introspective repentance, acknowledgement of sin, and in that truth, grace prevails. In fact, it is only in fullness of truth that grace for each is acknowledged honestly as necessary.
After the crowd disperses, in their final conversation, the woman and Jesus reveal much. Everyone misses the mark, says Jesus: "Is there no one here to judge you?" She replies, "No one, Master" using the Greek, kyrie, translated throughout the New Testament as "Lord", a term that denotes that she has completely devoted herself to him, a full confession of faith and belonging. Acknowledging her statement of faith He replies, "Then I do not judge you either." He says, "Go your way, but do not sin again." Grace...surrender...freedom...truth. He offers no threat, no judgement, and no condemnation. She has sinned, everyone has sinned, He has intervened, she has believed. He has forgiven her, and He has asked her to live better.
As believers we must proceed humbly, to serve the broken, out of the knowledge that we too have been broken and still are broken. Jesus is as available for each person to approach personally, internally, as He is for us who have already appealed to Him. And we can follow his example to offer opportunities to encourage people to pursue truth and grace - not through statements of judgement - but through gentle and honest examining of their own experience, their own heart:
"Is your life where you want it to be?"
"Are you teaching your kids what love is?"
"Are you good with your relationship with God?"