Participate in the Bible Story

Do you want Scripture-reading to come alive in your group? Read it together as Readers’ Theater, each person playing an assigned role. Every reader and listener is actively involved in the story.

This method works well with adults and children, for both readers and listeners. You might consider using Readers’ Theater occasionally for family devotions. I have found that when we read the Bible this way, even the quietest participants join into discussion more readily.

In this stor, a woman was caught in adultery and brought before Jesus is found in John 8:3-11. I based the reading on the text found in The Message. 

There are five roles in this reading: Narrator, 2 Pharisees, Jesus, Woman

John 8:3-11 A Woman Caught in Adultery

The religion scholars and Pharisees brought a woman in front of the crowd surrounding Jesus. They had caught her in an act of adultery. They stood her in plain sight of everyone.

Pharisee 1:
Teacher, this woman was caught red-handed in the act of adultery.

Pharisee 2:    
In the Law, Moses gives orders to stone such persons. What do you say?

They were trying to trap him into saying something incriminating so they could bring charges against him. Jesus bent down and wrote with his finger in the dirt, but they kept at him, badgering him.

Pharisee 1:
There’s no doubt about it—she’s an adulterer!

Pharisee 2
Surely you have something to say! What do we do with her?

Jesus straightened up and looked around at all those who had gathered there.

The sinless one among you, go first: Throw the stone.

Bending down again, he wrote some more in the dirt. Hearing that, they walked away, one after another, beginning with the oldest. The woman was left alone. Jesus stood up and turned to her.

Woman, where are they? Does no one condemn you?

No one, Master.

Neither do I. Go on your way. From now on, don’t sin.

If you’d like, prompt discussion with some of the questions below.

  • Do you think your first reaction would be to join with everybody else in condemning the woman for doing something wrong.
    • How did Jesus react?
    • Why do you think he acted this way?
  • Where is truth shown in this story? Where is grace demonstrated?
    • How does Jesus blend them together?
  • Have you experienced an occasion in your life where you deserved condemnation, but instead received grace?
  • Have you asked others, those who were affected by your sin, for forgiveness?
    • Have you forgiven yourself?
    • Which is harder?
  • What do you think Jesus would have said to you if you were brought before him by your accusers?

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