“And Jesus said to her ‘Neither do I condemn you, now go, and sin no more.”
– John 8:11
First Jesus said ‘I don’t condemn you.’ Then he said ‘Go and sin no more.’ How do you think he said this to the woman? Was it a stern command, or gentle words of advice? I know my Jesus, and it would be gentle words of advice. Jesus doesn’t force anyone to come to Him. He knocks the door of our heart. He doesn’t kick it down. He is the Good Shepherd, not SWAT.
If Jesus didn’t condemn her before she stopped sinning, would her continuing to sin change his mind? Did he say ‘I don’t condemn you IF you sin no more? No, he didn’t. He assured the woman she was not condemned, and then offered her his advice ‘Go and sin no more’ – because Jesus, filled with compassion for her, knew that continuing in the life she was living would destroy her. He wanted her to live a healthy life, not one of shame, guilt and likely punishment, where she could be stoned to death.
To God, the woman at the well was forgiven. The forgiveness was unconditional. The fruit of that forgiveness – the result of the love of Christ – was to to sin no more. A perfect illustration of God’s grace and the righteousness that follows.