In this brief exhortation I will attempt to persuade you to the usefulness of God’s Moral Government in converting souls to His mighty kingdom. It is my hope to show you through a brief overview of John chapter 8 that this was the method which Jesus used over and over in His own soul winning ministry. This did not start with Jesus’ earthly ministry, rather, its roots trace all the way back to the patriarchs in the book of Genesis.
“Jesus went unto the mount of Olives. And early in the morning he came again into the temple, and all the people came unto him; and he sat down, and taught them. And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst, They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act. Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou?” -John 8:1-5
“And all that heard him were astonished at his understanding and answers.”-Lk.2:47
This was where the Pharisees came against Him the most; since they could not dispute His miracles, they sought to find flaw in His teaching. They brought this woman caught in adultery in hopes of snaring Him in His words. If He agreed to her stoning some of the people may have thought He was cruel. Yet, if He stood against the fulfillment of the prescribed punishment according to law, He would appear lawless. It is amazing that the religious hypocrites even today seek to use these verses in the same manner, which we will address shortly. The trap was set, if they could discredit Jesus it would be the people who would throw Him out of the temple and their troubles would be over. Still, Jesus went on writing on the ground as if unvexed by their apparent trap.
“So, when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.”-John 8:7
Students threw rocks at us at Campbellsville, a Christian College
Here is where we see the moral government of God. Only one who is holy (that is set apart from the whole thing) and blameless has an ability or right to judge. Among this crowd, their hearts were pricked as it says:
“And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.”-Jn. 8:9
From the eldest to the youngest each one thought of their own sin and dropped the stones. Jesus appealed to their conscience, remember the law was written on the hearts of men. This is an important tool in evangelism, Jesus didn’t stop with the Pharisees. Imagine the mind of the woman caught in the very act, her own death very near and rightfully so, according to the law, she must have been trembling in fear. Jesus, to prove both mercy and truth, turned the light on her, saying, “Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee?”
This must have been a long silence as the woman must have been troubled to speak. She must have been humbled before Him as she said, “No man, Lord.” In order that mercy and truth should meet, Jesus spoke very authoritatively, “Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.”
Go and sin no more. Do you see how this appeal also calls on the conscience of a man to do what he already knows is right? To be sure, with God there is no respect of persons. He does not force His will on people who do not relish it, rather, the scriptures say God takes no pleasure in him who shrinks back. Will God forgive those who return stubbornly to their transgressions? No, Peter explained this clearly in his second epistle.
 Ps. 85:10-11  Jn. 8:10  Jn. 8:11  Rm. 7:12-16  Hb. 10:38
“The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished:”-II Pt. 2:9
Those who believe they can go on in their sin as if to make light of the sufferings of Christ, Peter also spoke of as those who despise the moral government of God. This is the way Paul persuaded the Ephesians to examine their faith, appealing to their conscience, warning clearly, “..have not so learned Christ; If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus.”
 II Pt. 2:10; Romans 13:1 Ep. 4:17-20
To see the history of this method let us look to the Patriarchs of the Christian faith. When Abraham was in Egypt, he thought the land to be absent of the fear of God. He lied calling Sarah his sister, thinking to protect himself. The Pharaoh being plagued by God came to perceive the lie and charged Abraham, saying, “What is this that thou hast done unto me? why didst thou not tell me that she was thy wife? Why saidst thou, She is my sister? so I might have taken her to me to wife: now therefore behold thy wife, take her, and go thy way.”
Isaac had a similar experience in Gerar, in which he told the same lie. This time Abimelech perceived the lie asking a similar question. Both Abraham and Isaac were proven wrong in their assumption that these men had no conscience, and, in both situations, God used this conscience to protect and even prosper Abraham and Isaac. Consider Jacob: oppressed by his Father-in-law, Laban, he would have been sent away empty handed except God had come to Laban in a dream. Jacob reproved Laban reminding him of God’s moral government which he called the fear of Isaac.
 Gn. 12:18-19  Gn. 26:9-11  Gn. 31:38-44
“Except the God of my father, the God of Abraham, and the fear of Isaac, had been with me, surely thou hadst sent me away now empty. God hath seen mine affliction and the labour of my hands, and rebuked thee yesternight.” -Gn. 31:42
It was for this reason Paul, in the letter to the Romans, wrote:
“For as many as have sinned without law shall also perish without law: and as many as have sinned in the law shall be judged by the law;
Joseph apparently learned this lesson, for it was by this very fear he refused Potiphar’s wife causing himself to suffer prison for the report of the Lord. Moses, perhaps, understood the principle of God being the Most High Governor, even over the Pharaoh who was his grandfather by adoption. Was it for this cause he “refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter”? Could this have been the reason he chose “rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season?” He esteemed “the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt.”
Nehemiah, when hearing the complaints of oppression by his people made it clear his intention to stand with his people, taking none of Artaxerxes bread. This chapter speaks of the laws of jubilee when the slaves would be returned to their possessions, their lands and homes, their debts being cleared. Under the Gentiles which ruled over them they had no such hope. Sadly, even when Israel was a sovereign nation these laws were not enforced in their fulness causing them to be no different than wicked Belshazzar: “weighed in the scales... found wanting.” Nehemiah, himself was a pious man and a good ruler using all he had to do right before his people. He was a man fully persuaded by the moral governance of God.
 Gn. 39:7-12  Hb. 11:24  Hb. 11:25  Hb.11:26  Ne. 5  Dn. 5:27
“But the former governors that had been before me were chargeable unto the people, and had taken of them bread and wine, beside forty shekels of silver; yea, even their servants bare rule over the people: but so did not I, because of the fear of God.”-Ne. 5:15
The philosopher Niccolo Machiavelli said, “People should either be caressed or crushed. If you do them minor damage they will get their revenge; but if you cripple them there is nothing they can do. If you need to injure someone, do it in such a way that you do not have to fear their vengeance.” To the worldly, this is wisdom, but it is quite contrary to kingdom of God. God’s governance employs the conscience by planting a desire to be cleansed from the burden of our wrongs. It is in brokenness and deep contrition we come to God. When this change is fulfilled flattery becomes just as repulsive as oppression.
It was in this vein of thought that Peter preached on the day of Pentecost pronouncing judgment upon the people who stood idle when Jesus was killed. A charge they understood clearly as valid, it was this charge that pierced their hearts causing them to cry out, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?”
It is also through this same Gospel, that we are relieved of our desire for revenge. It was when Stephen beheld Jesus standing at the right hand of the Father in all His glory, causing him to forgive those who were stoning him, saying, “lay not this sin to their charge.”
All these wonderful things and more are brought about by the moral government of God. In John chapter eight, Jesus continued to appeal to this concept saying, “I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” The Pharisees thought they had Him remembering in the previous chapter how Jesus had said, “He that speaketh of himself seeketh his own glory.” Still anyone paying attention knew what Jesus was referring to and Jesus shut down this objection with very little effort. He spoke of the moral government of God as the truth, calling his disciples to come to the truth that they might be made free. He placed the burden on the objectors saying boldly, “Which of you convinceth me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me?”
This is the same thing they do today. They bring up the woman caught in adultery assuming it means you cannot call out sin. This was never the point of the passage. The truth which was taught in John 8 was not that they couldn’t call out sin but, that those who were guilty of the same had no right to condemn the woman to death. Jesus did have that right and He chose to pardon, on the condition that she go and sin no more. As believers it is our delight to pardon but we have no right to change the conditions.
 “The Prince” Niccolo Machiavelli  Ps. 51:17  Acts 2:37  Acts 7:60  Jn. 8:12  Jn. 7:18
 Jn. 8:30-36  Jn. 8:45-47
“And thinkest thou this, O man, that judgest them which do such things, and doest the same, that thou shalt escape the judgment of God?”-Rm. 2:3
The idea being imparted here is not that we should flee from judgment as the Pharisees did, rather we should judge with righteous judgment. If we find ourselves in a similar sin, we should take the time to repent of our sins, that we may be washed by the blood of Jesus. To turn back from judgment would be to shirk our responsibility to love God and our neighbor as ourselves.
 Mt. 7:5; 5:23-24; Ep. 5:26
If we rightly divide the Scripture which has been laid before us, we should come to a place of holiness. The saint is one who has separated themselves from their former sinful heart, one who is sent like the woman caught in adultery to go and sin no more. In doing so, we become like Job, who was perfect and upright before God, “one that feared God, and eschewed evil. Having done this crucial work, we ought to be able to silence the scoffer by asking them to name our sin. At the same time, we can appeal to the truthfulness of our statements, taking the focus off us and shining light on the coming day of judgment.
 Job 1:1
“My righteousness I hold fast, and will not let it go: my heart shall not reproach me
This is the nature of preaching, proclaiming the Gospel. Reasoning with a sinful generation, a generation wherein many are hardened in their sin. We have no responsibility in the conversion of souls, our only charge is to make clear the judgment by which God will be the final judge. Everyone has a decision to make, we need only be sure we help them make an informed decision. The Gospel is only good news to those who wisely surrender to the will of God; to the rest it is terrible news and we should expect backlash. Still, we are constrained by the mercies of God by which we live to warn the wicked about the day of judgment!
“Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth.
These verses are examples of those who reject the moral governing of God, they seek instead to be rulers of their own heart. Often, these are the people who appear the most religious. They quench and grieve the Holy Spirit, not unlike the Pharisees which killed Stephen. They are those that upon reproof only harden their hearts. The Bible cries a loud woe unto these hypocrites, these followers of vain philosophy.
 Acts 7:51-53
“Woe unto you that desire the day of the LORD! to what end is it for you? the day of the LORD is darkness, and not light.
It is time to get to work. We must, as was told the woman caught in adultery, go and sin no more. If we would embrace the moral governing of God; He has promised to lead us into everlasting life. There are no failings in God if only we would yield to Him, we would be like Him.
“Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.
It all started so innocently, or so it seemed, a few snickers from the adults who were watching. They seemed to want me to look at the magazine on the coffee table. It had Madonna or Vanna White or somebody on the cover. The very first sentiment of one of the adults was embarrassment that the magazine was left out in the open. There was an offer to put it away, then I distinctly heard, No, let’s see if he looks at it. Now it had become a challenge! The moral my young mind gathered from the interaction was if I didn’t look at the magazine displayed on top of the coffee table; I would never be a man. Men like to look at naked women, they can’t control themselves. The magazine was promising a look at a naked celebrity and if I were ‘normal’ I would take it up on its offer.
The magazine, of course, was Playboy and I would like to say this was the first time I saw one, but it wasn’t. The fact is, I knew where my dad kept his collection. Other men that I looked up to had similar collections so what other lesson was I to learn? I would like to say the pattern stopped with something as mild as Playboy, but it didn’t. I knew where the movies were too. This was coming of age believing that ‘real’ men had sex with lots of different women. There was no pattern of commitment taught, nothing taught of the sacred nature of sexuality, no trust was taught. My parents soon divorced and looking back I should not have been surprised. This was the lesson taught when it came to relationships, sex and desire, gratify yourself and when you have had your fill move on.
Ted Bundy claimed that this wicked cycle is what led him to his crimes. In his final confession he cited an FBI study which stated that violent criminals, serial killers had this common thread: addiction to pornography. While, thankfully, I have never been tempted to do any violence to anyone, I certainly can see the disconnect present that it would take to perform such heinous crimes. When you lust after a photograph or video the woman becomes less than human. If this is what you are taught, even if the teaching is subliminal, it is no surprise that narcissism is the result. People become objects for your personal pleasure. This is what pornography clearly teaches, whether people take it to the degree that Bundy did or not.
In ten years of Christianity this has been one of the biggest strongholds God has helped me to overcome. It started by recognizing it as evil. The magazines were burned along with all video— that was the easy part. The battle that ensued was realizing that it is much deeper than some magazines. Sex sells, advertisers know this, so this spirit is all around us, so, then goes the TV in hopes of living pure. Still, you cannot remove yourself from the world you live in.
“I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators: Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world.”- I Corinthians 5:9-10
Burning the magazines didn’t solve it. The understanding that pornography is related closely with sex trafficking only brought added shame to my plight. This only increased the sorrow I felt when upon allowing lust to creep in from some image on a bill board or a woman dressed immodestly in public, I would fall to lustful fantasy. The thought was always the same if you don’t look people may think you are not a real man. The wages of sin is death, this vicious cycle was killing the possibility of any real, substantive relationship. Oh, how I longed for the gift of God, life eternal, a life free of this bondage!
What a horrible knowledge knowing that I was worthy of hell and if I died that is where I would likely go. Though I had left the physical act of fornication behind in my search for Jesus, I was still clinging to the character of a fornicator which I had been taught to be from such an early age. Jesus taught clearly to lust in your heart is enough to make you deserve hell, but how can I kill this old man?
, These verses haunted my life, could it be coming so far in this transformation God so clearly had begun, would I turn back? God forbid! It was here I cried out, here is where I found my deliverance. The things I had thought made manliness were illusions, they were lies. The man of God is described as noble, a warrior of righteousness, this is the answer to that old man the one who must be crucified. The key was right here: the virtue which was lacking was honor, nobility or, to speak Biblically, righteousness. This was the virtue I had learned to squash for so long in my pursuit of sexual desire and status among my peers.
“Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity.
Flee youthful lusts, had I been taught this from the beginning—to think of the work God might have accomplished in this life! Greater works than these as Jesus said, if only I had realized it was possible to overcome. I have heard many times that the devil works double time in order to corrupt people who have a calling on their life. Once he has succeeded at any level, he never ceases to remind you of your transgression. Who will you listen to? God or the devil?
There is no time for languish, deliverance lies securely in the Word of God. Many are looking for some emotional experience where they ‘feel’ delivered, this may never come. A wicked generation seeketh a sign and no sign shall be given, except the sign of Jonah. Some things will go only when you make a clear decision to repent, that is renounce your former conversation. The old man will live on, if you let him! Crucify him today, you must learn to hate the garment spotted by the world.
“Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,”-II Corinthians 6:17
This is a battle to the death. We will either overcome, put that old man to death or we will find ourselves dead in our sins in an eternal hell. There is no in between, pornography is that serious! This is an opportunity to find true deliverance; this is true salvation! Jesus said, if you believe in Him you would do the same works as Him. He came to set the captives free, but how can you do the same works as Him, if you are still captivated with the sin of this world?
“Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.”-I Corinthians 6:18
Are you a child of God? Then you will bear this testimony, having died to the flesh you will live as one resurrected from the dead. This is the strength by which dead men preach. Many call us proud or brash, but, if it is the truth which sets us free, then it is only reasonable that we settle for nothing less. Lies are vain and unreasonable and should rightfully make men of God angry. As Jonah said, “They that observe lying vanities forsake their own mercy (Jonah 2:8).” Still, we are but unprofitable servants, having only done our duty in contending for such a great living faith, a faith that has indeed set us free. It is only reasonable service.
They say we are intolerant when we draw clear lines against abhorrent sins, the sins that this current society seeks to accept. Yet, knowing the truth (the wages of sin is death) how could we do any less and still claim to love our neighbors as ourselves?
It is time for men of God to rise up! Society will make an outcast of all who accept this call, but God is faithful. Though hand join in hand the wicked will not go unpunished. We should always remember this, though we face public mocking and persecution, it is a worthy cause. In a society where people give themselves to be oversexualized and objectified it may be your strong stance against this evil which gives someone the hope they need to be delivered.
There is true freedom at the cross. Let us no longer be a stumbling block for others in their pursuit of that freedom, rather let us be ministers of reconciliation, even as we have been reconciled. We have the precious gift of the Holy Ghost and in this we can proclaim liberty! We can overcome by the blood of the lamb and by the word of our testimony! Hallelujah!
I am only a brother...
Can I tell you about my elder brother Jesus?