There is a line drawn in the sand. You can palpably feel it. Not just a line between political parties or religious ideologies, but a deep line in the sand that emanates from the core values we hold; the principles we stand by. Suddenly the line is no longer blurred. With the blatant onset of university students and various other American organizations aligning with the brutal rape, heinous murder and kidnapping of children and elderly citizens that Hamas champions, we feel an overwhelmingly powerful separation occurring between us and them. We who hold strongly to the precepts and commandments of Almighty God are stunned by this deep, wide line in the sand. We do not like division and separation. For many of us, the division is even affecting our immediate families. How are we to react in these times of separation? How did Jesus react to the men opposing him when He wrote in the sand?
The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the group and said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?” They were using this question as a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing him. But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger. When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground. At this, those who heard began to go away one at a time, the older ones first, until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there. Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they?
It is curious to me that we don't know what Jesus wrote in the sand. And it is somewhat strange that not one of these men felt convicted and offered to forgive the woman. But what we DO know is that as these accusers and hypocrites started leaving the scene, Jesus did not go after them. He did not try to use it as an opportunity to have everybody there hold hands and sing "Kum ba ya" and make nice with each other. He just let them go their way - and He alone stood with the woman whom He seemed to know had a repentant heart.
He gives us another glimpse of this in Matthew 12:46-49:
While Jesus was still talking to the crowd, his mother and brothers stood outside, wanting to speak to him. Someone told him, “Your mother and brothers are standing outside, wanting to speak to you.”
He replied to him, “Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?” Pointing to his disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers."
What I'm really getting at, dear friends, is that I believe we are approaching a time, more than ever before, when there will be great divisions in physical families. It will be painful; indeed, it already is painful in many families. But just as Jesus understood that his brothers in the faith were closer to his heart than his own flesh and blood, so it will be for some of us. We need spiritual families who are standing strong for Jesus and who are determined to overcome evil and walk out their faith to the end. Many of us will be mocked for our faith in days ahead. Luke 21:16 says, "You will be betrayed even by parents, brothers, relatives and friends and some of them will put you to death. All men will hate you because of me."
As much as we would like to live in a world where all our loved ones agree with us and want to take the narrow road with us, following King Yeshua, our Messiah, it isn't going to work that way. They might end up wanting to pick up a stone (whether a literal stone or a painful, slanderous accusation), hoping to take us down. So what should we do? I think the Holy Spirit is showing me that we should "bend down and draw a line in the sand" making clear our decision to follow our Lord and Savior, whatever the cost. Then we will see these people drop their stones and walk away... until only Jesus is left.
Who else do we need?
Kelly Ferrari Mills