The beauty of Graciousness
Jesus returned to the Mount of Olives, but early the next morning he was back again at the Temple. A crowd soon gathered, and he sat down and taught them. As he was speaking, the teachers of religious law and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in the act of adultery. They put her in front of the crowd.
“Teacher,” they said to Jesus, “this woman was caught in the act of adultery. 5 The law of Moses says to stone her. What do you say?”
They were trying to trap him into saying something they could use against him, but Jesus stooped down and wrote in the dust with his finger. They kept demanding an answer, so he stood up again and said, “All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!” Then he stooped down again and wrote in the dust.
When the accusers heard this, they slipped away one by one, beginning with the oldest, until only Jesus was left in the middle of the crowd with the woman. Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, “Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?”
“No, Lord,” she said.
And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.”
In the above passage, a woman is caught in adultery and brought to Jesus for a final assessment before her fate.
Throughout the ages, many people have claimed that the woman was innocent from any wrongdoing. It is clearly not the case because if she was innocent, then Jesus would not have told her: ‘sin no more’.
In the above story, the Pharisees and teachers intended on trapping Jesus in order to accuse Him of something.
However, Jesus uses His wisdom to force the accusers in graciousness towards the adulterous woman. After Jesus said : ““All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!” Then he stooped down again and wrote in the dust.”, they all stopped and walked away.
Ultimately, Jesus also showed himself gracious to the woman by telling her the truth in a loving manner.
Graciousness is one of the main pillars upon which life is sustained. If Jesus did not lead the woman’s accusers into ‘forced graciousness’ and if Jesus did not show graciousness, then woman’s life would have ended sooner.
Graciousness is the ability to act and speak within the boundaries of gentleness and understanding.
Graciousness is not synonymous to passivity where people can decide to overlook everything. In Graciousness, it is possible to say the truth and to rebuke but within the boundaries of gentleness and understanding.
The opposite of graciousness is ‘ungraciousness’. In ungraciousness, there is a total lack of understanding, there is stiffness. Ungraciousness is often characterized by strong sharp conclusions lacking conversation. In relationships (whether business, work, love,or in any type of relationships), ungraciousness only enforces one view without giving regards to other views.
If you read the above story, you will notice that a woman is accused of adultery but where is the man she committed adultery with?. Notice as well that the woman is not given a chance to speak therefore we don’t even know the full context of her actions.
As shown in the above story, ungraciousness is strongly characterized by the need to draw conclusions without giving consideration to a full assessment.
As a matter of fact, it is extremely difficult to honor others when we lack graciousness. If the Israelite honored Jesus, they would have shown graciousness towards Him. Since Honor opens the door for many blessings, a spirit of ungraciousness can block blessings in the life of the person constantly practicing ungraciousness.
No life can be sustained in an environment that lacks graciousness. You are alive because somehow, certain people showed themselves gracious towards you.
It is impossible to raise a newborn baby without showing graciousness to him/her.
No marriage or love relationship can sustain without graciousness because both partners are bound to be imperfect.
In graciousness, we understand imperfections and we tell the truth in gentleness. The teachers and Pharisees wanted to destroy the lives of the woman and of Jesus. On the other hand, through graciousness, Jesus extended the life of the accused woman.
You cannot build anything if you are constantly in a state of ungraciousness.
Graciousness will build and prolong.
Ungraciousness destroys and brings a lot of misunderstandings.
Again, I need to reiterate this: ‘graciousness does not equate to accepting sin. Actually in graciousness we should be able to rebuke sin and to warn of the consequences of sin but in love and gentleness like Jesus did.
It is possible to speak about sin, Hell and eternal perdition in graciousness.
Many ungracious people often complain as to why other people keep their distance from them. The response is simple: ‘it is not pleasant to be around harsh people even if they speak truth or act right.’
Sometimes, it is not always about telling the truth but it is also about HOW we say it.
If Jesus was gracious, even when rebuking or when the truth, then we should also be gracious.