There are 6 thoughts on “Procedural Violations in the Trial of the Woman Taken in Adultery”.

  1. Very edifying article. I often look at the verses below and consider their meaning when I replace the word “believe” with “understood”. Believe is an action derived from the combination of understanding/knowing and Doing/keeping John 14:21

    John 5:46-47 KJV  For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me: for he wrote of me.  (47)  But if ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe my words?

  2. I totally enjoyed Steven T. Densley, Jr.’s discourse. The thing that came to my mind was Joseph’s very real concern for Mary when she returned from visiting Elizabeth three months pregnant.
    I liked the part where the law was done away with possibly because adultery had become so prevalent. Just like our modern day when old laws, opinions, and taboos are frowned upon and we bite our tongues because they are so common and acceptable.

  3. In the alternative, if Jesus said the woman should not be executed, they could have accused Jesus of preaching doctrine contrary to the law of Moses. In spite of the fact that there may have been no due process available to enforce the death penalty, the Jews of the time were not above using capital punishment, though perhaps without Roman sanction.

    If Jesus had said the woman should not be executed then the Pharisees would have been able to discredit him with an ad hominem – tu quoque before the people, because Jesus’s open, public, and repeated complaints against the religious scholars and the leadership of the Church was that they were not doing what God had commanded, and that they were teaching men to put aside the commandments of God in favor of the precepts / doctrine / traditions of men. How could the Pharisees have aroused the mob to kill him for preaching against the law when they themselves were openly guilty of it[1]? After all, relaxing God’s commandments was how they got paid.

    [1] See Matthew 15:1-20, and contrast with JST Matthew 5:19-22.

  4. Terrific article, Bro. Densley. It seems like the whole story could be wrapped up by saying that the story of the woman taken in adultery isn’t about the woman taken in adultry.

  5. Despite the quibbles, I say this article is ‘magisterial’. I have long considered that we do well when we take time before responding to difficult cases, but I enjoyed this resume of what he might have written in that dust. Well done.

  6. One quibble I’d have is the assumption that the law as had at the time of Christ matched the law given to Moses. That’s a rather long period of time – around 1600 years – to assume perfect transmission. Further there’s a fair bit of evidence that many elements of the law are post-exilic (which also explains some deviations in the Book of Mormon from our received text). So to say Jesus gave that particular law is a bit question begging.

    That said, of course Jesus as well as being divine was also a product of his times and adopts a fair number of pharisee views and even forms of exegesis – although clearly he also breaks with some of the two main strains as well.

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