Jesus in a New Light
"The ultimate weakness of violence is that it is a descending spiral, begetting the very thing it seeks to destroy. Instead of diminishing evil, it multiplies it. Through violence you murder the hater, but you do not murder hate. In fact, violence merely increases hate. Returning violence for violence multiplies violence, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."
_Martin Luther King Jr.
"I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life." _Jesus in John 8:12
I've always thought it was kinda random that whoever added the story of the woman who was "caught" in adultery (more like set up), added it in John 8. But in light of Martin Luther King Jr.'s famous quote, "Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that..." in reference to nonviolence and love, I think it might be more intentional than I thought. The story of Jesus forgiving rather than condemning, exchanging retaliation (especially if it really was our sin that put Jesus on the cross) and vengeful punishment for generosity and grace, is placed directly before Jesus' quote; "I am the light of the world." It's almost as though he had just finished demonstrating that truth in the preceding story. Seeing Jesus in a new light, I'm wondering if the author(s) who placed the story where they did were beginning to understand what Dr. King understood so many years later... that light overcomes darkness, nonviolence overcomes violence, and that Jesus is truly the embodiment of such a light that can actually drive out retaliation and violence.
If Jesus is the light of the world, let us be children of that light. Let us be agents of the Prince of Peace... the kind of peace which surpasses all understanding--which is right even when our logic and understanding says that we must use violence, a peace to be pursued in the face of chaos and not just in its' absence.