What did Jesus write on the ground?


Yeshua (Jesus) of Nazareth sends a sobering text message to the scribes and Pharisees in John 8:6. Without a smartphone He resorts to hardware of the day – writing on the ground with His finger. The scene unfolds in Jerusalem. Religious leaders test Yeshua by parading a woman caught in adultery, a capital crime in Jewish civil law. When the men ask if the woman should be stoned, the Son of Man stoops and scribbles in the dirt. Twice. Then He stands and challenges the men, “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.”

The men walk away one by one. The passage does not reveal what the Lord wrote but the Old Testament offers a clue. Yeshua might have scribbled Jeremiah 17:13 to warn the scribes and Pharisees they were on dangerous ground spiritually with Him:

Those who depart from Me shall be written in the earth, because they have forsaken the LORD, the fountain of living waters.

The day before He wrote on the ground Yeshua identified Himself as that fountain. He told a crowd gathered in Jerusalem for the fall feast of Sukkot, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water (John 7:37-38).” The religious men who confronted Yeshua the next day likely were in that crowd. They forsook the fountain of living waters.

Written by Jeff King

Jeff is a retired newspaper journalist in the United States and follower of Yeshua (Jesus) of Nazareth

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