Using People

“The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman caught in adultery, and having set her in the center of the court, they said to Him, ‘Teacher, this woman has been caught in adultery, in the very act.'” (John 8:3-4)

One of the many shortfalls of the scribes & Pharisees was the lack of any genuine concern for this woman and her situation. They were just “using her” as a “test case” in order to trap Jesus (:6 says “they were saying this, testing Him, so that they might have grounds for accusing Him.”)  Their real concern was not for the righteousness of the Law, and certainly not for this woman’s soul.

May God in His grace preserve us from that same kind of attitude towards people. May we never see people in their sin, or in the midst of their calamities, as “religious props” or “living illustrations” we might use just to make our theological or political points. These are real people, with real souls — just like this woman in John 8.

How are we to treat people? Jesus told us — and better, SHOWED us: “For God so LOVED the world, that He gave …”. “Neither do I condemn you, now go and sin no more.”  People are to be greatly loved, and reached for God’s Kingdom at great cost — not used.

B.J. Thomas had a simple song out years ago that reminded us of this very point:

Loving things, and using people, only leads to misery.

Using things, and loving people — that’s the way it’s got to be.

About Shawn Thomas

My blog,, features the text of my sermons, book reviews, family life experiences -- as well as a brief overview of the Lifeway "Explore the Bible" lesson for Southern Baptist Sunday School teachers.
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