How Did Jesus Treat The Woman Caught in Adultery, and Was That Story Originally in the Bible, or Added Later, as some scholars believe? #79

Happy Shelter in Place Day, Friends! I find myself living in the part of Central California right now that has been essentially shut down for the next 22 days, and our Shelter in Place order just went into effect about an hour ago. These are strange, strange times! So – sometimes people ask me how it’s going doing a daily podcast. I can tell you that each episode takes just a little under 3 hours from start to finish, which includes writing the episode, recording it, editing it in Audacity, and entering all of the pertinent information into a WordPress and Libsyn post. Longer episodes take longer, shorter episodes can be around 2 hours of time. Last night was one of the later nights for the show. One of my daughters wanted to watch a show with me, and I’ll take just about any excuse I can to spend time with them, so we watched a show together, which began after midnight. Then I wrote a fairly long pastoral email to the congregation of the church I pastor about the coronavirus pandemic. When I say fairly long, I mean over 1800 words, so about 6 pages worth. We’re in California, and on a virtual lock-down, so hopefully they had a little extra time to read. One of the problems being in a church that is pastored by somebody who fancies himself as a writer is that you can get very long emails from time to time. If you are a leader at the church I pastor, you got a 2100 word email from me AND an 1800 word email from me within the space of 4 days. I should repent in sackcloth and ashes for that, I suppose, but these are trying times we live in right now, filled with dangers like novel viruses, lack of toilet paper, and novel-length emails from pastors.

ANYWAY, the point of what I was trying to say earlier before I rambled was that I didn’t start WRITING the podcast until around 3AM. Fortunately, I had some great material from pastor David Platt to use, so I didn’t have to write a ton of original material myself. It was, however, one of the few times since I began this daily podcast in January that I kind of just wanted to go to bed, and not spend 2 hours or so on a podcast. HOWEVER – when I got to the point of recording it, and I got to the part where I was just reading the Scriptures into the microphone, that’s when I noticed something that happens practically every time I do the podcast: THE WORD OF GOD ENCOURAGED ME. It gave me HOPE. It built me up. It elevated my mood. Almost every time I record this show, I come away encouraged. Not because I like recording and editing a podcast – that can get a little tedious…but because the WORD of God is powerful, and supernatural, and it just builds me up in faith, because faith comes by HEARING THE WORD OF GOD. I just wanted to share that with you as a benefit. You can get that same benefit – without the 2-3 hours of writing, recording and editing by simply READING (or listening!) to the WORD OF GOD! If you haven’t done so yet, allow me to encourage you to listen to the other half of today’s episode – episode #78 – I split today’s show into two parts so it wouldn’t be too long.

In today’s reading, we encounter the story of the woman caught in adultery, known to scholars as the Pericope Adulterae. Many scholars, including many evangelical ones, consider this passage to be a later edition to the New Testament, and in most modern Bibles, this part of John is set apart to show doubt about the passage. So – what’s going on here, and was this story original to John’s Gospel, or was it a later edition?

            The Pericope Adulterae, found in John 7:53-8:11, is surrounded by more controversy and conjecture than any other New Testament Passage with the possible exception of the ending of Mark. The authorship and placement of this pericope has been hotly debated at least since the fifth century, and there are still scholars lined up on opposite sides of the issues surrounding this passage.

            Attempting to extract meaning and application from this passage is almost meaningless without first wrestling with the genuineness of the text and the mass of evidence for and against it. The issue is simple to grasp – if this pericope is a genuine and accurate happening in the life of Jesus, then it carries just as much weight as the rest of the New Testament. Conversely, if the passage is a later edition with no basis in fact (i.e. it never happened) then the passage is notable only for its historical value and the question of how it became inserted into many manuscripts of the New Testament.        Though it will be argued that there is no way to be certain of the historicity of this passage, the preponderance of the evidence points to it being a genuine happening in the life of Jesus, and as such it does have application in the modern church and it can inform how we live and interact with each other.

Summary of the Passage

            7:53-8:2 The Pericope Adulterae begins with a somewhat awkward[1] transition from the previous narrative. The stage is set here; Jesus has spent the night at the Mount of Olives and dawn finds Him mingling with the crowd near the temple courts. His very presence attracts a crowd and notably (for the fourth Gospel)[2] Jesus sits down to teach them.

            8:3-8:6a As Jesus is teaching the people, The scribes and Pharisees bring in a woman and stand her in front of the crowd. They explain to Jesus that the woman was caught in the act of committing adultery, and (on the surface) they present her to Jesus for judgment. The question is, should the woman be stoned in accordance with the law of Moses? The text informs us that this question is a trap for Jesus, a classic catch 22, there is no clear way that Jesus can give a verdict here without opening Himself up to some basis for accusation, either in the eyes of the Roman authorities, or the people.

            8:6b-8:9 Perplexingly, Jesus doesn’t answer their questions immediately, indeed, He never gives them the verdict. Instead, He leans over and writes on the ground. The accusers persist in their questioning, and Jesus finally responds with His classic retort, challenging any one of the accusers without sin to be the one that casts the first stone. Though we don’t know how much time passed after Jesus’ challenge, one can almost be assured of an awkward silence, punctuated by occasional stones hitting the soft earth as they fall from the hands of the accusers. Beginning with the eldest among them, the scribes and Pharisees melt away into the crowd.

            8:10-8:11 Jesus and the accused woman are left as the center of attention. He initiates dialogue her, asking the obvious questions – where is everybody? Is no one left to condemn? Upon her acknowledgment that they have all left, Jesus also refuses to condemn the woman, but warns her to leave behind her life of sin.

Controversy and Canonicity: Contra Johannine

            This Pericope is a wonderful piece of literature; very moving and dramatic. Jesus cleverly meets the challenge of the scribes and Pharisees without compromising and without falling into a trap, and the woman caught in sin is given a second chance to repent. It’s a powerful story, but is it genuine? Did it really happen? If it did really happen, why is there so much evidence against it being an original part of the gospel of John? A survey of the evidence for and against genuineness is presented below.

            The majority of New Testament scholars are fairly adamant that the Pericope Adulterae is non-Johannine in origin. The ancient manuscript evidence is indeed stacked against this Pericope. Bruce Metzger  points out that all major early Greek manuscripts omit the Pericope, including our oldest and most respected early manuscripts, Codex Sinaiticus, Codex Vaticanus,        p66 and p75.[3] Though some Old Latin manuscripts include the Pericope, many omit it as well, and the early Syriac, and Coptic manuscripts do not contain the passage[4]. Codex Bezae is the only major Greek manuscript prior to the 8th century that this pericope appears in, and Bezae is known for its many interpolations. In fact, Metzger states,

                        “No other manuscript has so many and such remarkable variations from     what is usually taken to be the New Testament Text. Codex Bezae’s special            characteristic is the free addition (and occasional omission) of words, sentences      and even incidences.”[5]

                        Further manuscript evidence against the Johannine nature of the Pericope is the variety of places it is attached in some of the manuscripts that do contain it. In some manuscripts, it appears after John 7:36, in some after John 7:44, some as an addition at the end of John’s gospel, some after Luke 21:28, and some even after Luke 24:53.[6] Though the number of manuscripts that displace this pericope is not overwhelming, the mere fact of its varied appearance in even a few manuscripts tends to cast doubt on the concreteness of its location after John 7:52.

            The final bit of manuscript evidence is the unusually high number of textual variants found in the manuscripts that do contain the pericope. Gary Burge points out that line per line, these twelve verses contain more textual variants across the manuscript tradition than almost any other passage of scripture. [7]

            There is also much patristic evidence, especially in the east, stacked against the passage. This pericope is not mentioned by any Greek Father until Euthymius Zigabenus in the 12th century and isn’t found in the writings of the early Fathers in the west either. Thus, it is omitted by Origen, Clement, Cyprian, Irenaeus, Tertullian, Cyril and Chrysostom,[8] even in writings where it would seem to be an appropriate resource for them to use. While Zane Hodges tries to make the case that the absence of the Pericope in these church fathers constitutes an argument from silence, and thus proves nothing[9], the fact of the matter is that this is more empirical evidence stacked against the pericope, and it adds weight to the non-Johannine argument.

            While the manuscript evidence would seem to be the greatest evidence against the Pericope, there are also suspicious grammatical and contextual features of the text. Statistical analysis of the text has claimed to show several features which “prove” its non Johannine nature. Vern Poythress has examined the grammatical use of the conjunctions “de”, “oun”, “kai”, and “asyndeton” in the Gospel of John, and developed some general rules that John appears to follow. Upon examination of the adulteress pericope, it would appear that there are enough variations in its use of conjunctions (compared with the rest of John) to allow Poythress to conclude that this Pericope is not written by John.[10]

            Further grammatical evidence focuses on the words that are used in the passage. Bryant and Krause point out that approximately nine percent, or 15 of the words used in this pericope do not occur elsewhere in the gospel, the highest percentage for a passage of this size in John[11]. The Mount of Olives, The scribes, and the phrase “early morning” are not found anywhere else in the gospel of John, but all are somewhat common in the synoptic gospels. In addition, only here in John is Jesus addressed as teacher.

            While some of these unique words can be explained by the nature of the story, as well as the semi-technical judicial language employed, there are still a high frequency of unique words and constructs here compared with the rest of John.

            Finally, there is contextual evidence that seems to indicate this pericope is out of place. Borchert[12] and many others believe that the text disrupts the flow of the Feast of Tabernacles narrative. Many point out its similarity in time and setting to Luke 21:37-38, and (as mentioned above) some manuscripts place the passage right after verse 38 because it seems to be a better fit. It is also true that the flow of the text from 7:52 to 8:12 is smooth and uninterrupted when this passage is removed, but of course, that could be said of many passages!

Controversy and Canonicity: Pro Johannine

            Most scholars believe the evidence against the Pericope Adulterae is overwhelming, but there is much positive evidence for the ancientness of this event, and even some evidence that would seem to indicate the text is Johannine and not at all out of place.

            The strongest evidence for the veracity and Johannine nature of the Pericope comes from the manuscripts and church fathers of the west. Several Old Latin manuscripts do in fact contain the Pericope. Hodges argues valiantly that the absence of the passage in our earliest and most reliable manuscripts (Sinaiticus, Vaticanus, p66 and p75) is due to those manuscripts being of a proto-Alexandrian origin, and thus likely coming from the same (ancient) exemplar, one which had the passage intentionally excised.[13] He posits that the Pericope was removed from some texts very early (before 200), but that the passage was quite possibly in the original autograph.

            The Patristic evidence for the Pericope is surprisingly strong in the west. Several church fathers in the fourth and fifth century mention the text, beginning with Pacian of Barcelona, and including Ambrose, Ambrosiaster, Jerome and Augustine. Jerome and Augustine in particular add much to the pro Johannine side of the argument, providing significant ancient evidence and speculation on the passage.

            Jerome includes the Pericope Adulterae in his Latin Vulgate translation of the scriptures, thus cementing its future acceptance among the Catholic church. In his Dialogue against the Pelagians, Jerome makes a very intriguing reference to this passage,

                        “In the Gospel according to John in many manuscripts, both Greek and Latin, is found the story of the adulterous woman who was accused before the Lord.”[14]


            This comment is very significant in considering the Pericope Adulterae, and would seem to stand as the strongest pro-Johannine evidence available. As Hodges points out[15], Jerome was well traveled, and would have had a wide exposure to both Greek and Latin texts, many of which were older than any that has survived to this day. Jerome’s statement should carry much more weight with modern New Testament textual scholars than it appears it does.

            Augustine goes even further than Jerome does in his commentary on the passage, acknowledging the already existing controversy over the passage and offering a reason for it’s removal from some manuscripts,

                        “Certain persons of little faith, or rather enemies of true faith, fearing, I suppose, lest their wives should be given impunity  in sinning, removed from their manuscripts the Lord’s act of forgiveness toward the adulteress, as if He who said  ‘sin no more’ had granted permission to sin.” [16]

            While Augustine’s hermeneutical approach to the passage contains a common mistake (Jesus did not specifically forgive the adulterous woman), his observation is very relevant and offers an intriguing possible explanation for the manuscript problems (and textual variances) associated with this passage. Hodges further quotes Ambrose who makes a similar suggestion to Augustine’s – that the passage is a stumbling block.

            The contextual argument against this pericope is perhaps the easiest to answer.

While many commentators have pointed out the “disruption” of the Feast of Tabernacles narrative that this pericope seems to effect, Allison Trites convincingly argues the opposite; the entire passage fits into the overall theme of controversy in John 1-12.[17] Other contextual clues could be seen to indicate the proper placement of this passage. For one, it would seem that the story is a great illustration of John 3:17, “For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” (John 3:17, NIV)

            The Pericope can also be seen in a literary sense as a response to the question posed in John 7:26, “Here he is, speaking publicly, and they are not saying a word to him. Have the authorities really concluded that he is the Christ?” (John 7:26, NIV)

            While much has been made of the grammatical analysis of this pericope, specifically focusing on what is considered non Johannine grammar, there has been some grammatical work on the passage that offers different conclusions. Alan Johnson has used some of the existent grammatical statistical methods on other, non disputed passages of John, and concluded that some of those would be considered non Johannine based on the very same methodology used on the Pericope Adulterae. In addition, he also points out several grammatical features in this passage that are consistent with the rest of John, including the use of “de”, “touto” and “legein” [18]

            My own grammatical analysis of the passage has produced some interesting results, further casting doubt on the ability of statistical grammatical analysis to effectively determine canonicity and authorship questions. The phrase “meketi amartane” (no longer sin, or stop sinning) only occurs here in the pericope and in John 5:14, where Jesus likewise instructs the paralytic to stop sinning. “ina ecosin” (that they might) is a phrase found only in verse six, and John 17:13. “Kai palin” (and again) in verse 8 is found six other times in John but only once in Luke. Finally, the phrase “eis ten gen” (in the earth) from verse 6 is found 23 times in the New Testament, 5 are in John, and 12 are in Revelation – so of the 23 times that phrase is used, 17 times it is Johannine. That analysis might be used to impress upon some a level of certainty that John did write this passage, but in fact, in the final analysis it doesn’t add much to the argument one way or the other – except to possibly refute those who use statistical grammatical analysis to “prove” that this Pericope is non-Johannine.

            A thorough survey of the evidence reveals one thing quite clearly: the authorship and position of the Pericope Adulterae is not an easy issue to decide. It is perplexing and frustrating to see the certainty that is exhibited by many scholars on both sides of this issue. Bruce Metzger, Phillip Comfort, Kurt Aland, Raymond Brown, George Beasley-Murray, Leon Morris and many others all make absolute statements on the Pericope and point to overwhelming evidence that it is either non-canonical or non Johannine. Beasley-Murray goes so far as to write, “It is universally agreed by textual critics of the Greek NT that this passage was not part of the Fourth Gospel in its original form.”[19]

What an outrageous and misleading statement! On the other hand, there are a few scholars (Elmer Towns, some scholars in the King James only camp, and several Dallas Theological Seminary professors) who are equally adamant that this passage is certainly genuine, and right where it belongs in the New Testament. The fact is that the best and most irrefutable evidence against the Johannine nature of the Pericope Adulterae is its lack of attestation in many of our earliest and best surviving manuscripts. When this manuscript evidence is considered in light of Jerome’s quote above on all of the Greek and Old Latin manuscripts he saw that contained the Pericope (and likely were older than most that we have now) we have a clear conundrum, one that cannot be fairly answered without new evidence coming to light.

            Thankfully, one thing is agreed upon by most N.T. scholars – this pericope is very old[20] and very likely to be an accurate event in the life of Jesus. Thus Metzger writes that John 7:53-8:11, “has all the earmarks of historical veracity”[21], and Raymond Brown writes, “There is nothing in the story itself, or its language that would forbid us to think of it as an early story concerning Jesus.”[22]

            If this Pericope is in fact a genuine event in the ministry of Jesus – how is it that it is absent in so many early Biblical texts? To put the issue another way, Phillip W. Comfort offers a list of suspect passages in the Textus Receptus, including the Pericope Adulterae. He challenges those who would argue for the inclusion of these questionable passages to, “come up with good arguments as to why scribes (in the early centuries) would have purposely excised these passages.”[23] Gary Burge proposes an interesting, though improvable suggestion that answers both questions: the Pericope Adulterae text was excised from some early manuscripts for theological reasons. Burge points to the unbiblical Doctrine of Penance, as articulated by early church fathers like Tertullian, Clement and Cyprian. Sexual sins in the eyes of many of the early church fathers were very grave, and in some cases unforgivable.[24]  In light of that, it is conceivable that this passage was removed, under the impression that it was or too light on a sin, or in fear (As Augustine suggests above) that it would give others license to sin without fear of reprisal. It is also a possibility that the text is a real happening in the life of Jesus that never was put into the gospels because of the fear listed above (or for another reason – as John says, if everything Jesus did was written down, the world couldn’t contain the books!)

A Deeper Look at the Text

We now turn our attention back to the text itself, and from the perspective that it is a genuine happening, and is placed in the appropriate place in the text. Examining this passage in its literary context, we see that Jesus’ ministry, previously marked by amazing miracles and healings at the time of the adulterous pericope had become quite controversial. Jesus’ teachings were very challenging, and He even lost some disciples because of them.

            In the events leading up to the encounter, Jesus brothers urge Him to go the Feast of Tabernacles, and he temporarily declined, only to come later and begin to interact with the people. As He teaches, many people believe in Him, and many don’t – causing arguments and strife. The temple guards are sent to arrest Jesus, but they themselves become arrested by His words and fail to complete their job. The Pharisees and other religious leaders meet in anger, considering what to do and finding no solution. It is directly after this that the incident with the adulterous woman happens.

            The Old Testament, in Deuteronomy 22 states, “If a man is found sleeping with another man’s wife, both the man who slept with her and the woman must die.” (Deuteronomy 22:24, NIV) Leviticus 20 states similarly, “If a man commits adultery with another man’s wife—with the wife of his neighbor—both the adulterer and the adulteress must be put to death.” (Leviticus 20:10, NIV) These were the laws of Moses referred to in vs. 5 of this passage. Curiously, there is no mention of the man that was with the woman – this has led many to conclude that the situation was a set up from the beginning, (i.e. the woman was also “trapped”) The scribes and Pharisees, therefore, were wanting Jesus to rule on a case that was flawed from the beginning – they were asking Him to incompletely apply the law of Moses to this situation.

            This was merely another attempt by the religious leaders to put Jesus in a position where there is no good way out. A similar incident occurs in Matthew 22 (and the other Synoptics): Jesus is asked whether it is right to pay taxes to Caesar, if He answers yes, then the crowds would get angry with Him, if He answers no, then He risks making enemies of the Roman leaders. Also, Jesus uses the same technique against the religious leaders in Matthew 21 when asked who gave Him his authority, His return question, was John’s Baptism from heaven or not, could not be answered in such a way as to not cause the leaders problems.  In this particular instance, if Jesus were to “rule” that the woman should be stoned, He would run afoul of Roman laws against mob violence[25] and if He let the woman off the hook, then He would be countermanding the Law of Moses.

            The response of Jesus to this dilemma, certainly knowing the religious leader’s hearts and motives, is very interesting: He merely stoops down and writes on the ground. Much ink has been wasted trying to determine what exactly it was that Jesus wrote in the ground. Beasley-Murray offers a good list of past suggestions: Was He writing out His decision in the case before verbally announcing it? Was he writing out a passage from Exodus that warns against supporting a wicked man as a malicious witness? Was He writing in the dust to remind the scribes of Jeremiah’s words, “Those who turn away from you will be written in the dust, because they have forsaken the Lord, the spring of living water.” (Jeremiah 17:13, NIV).[26] I prefer Raymond Brown’s proposal; that Jesus was merely doodling[27], possibly to consider how to handle the situation wisely, possibly in prayer. The fact is that what Jesus wrote has not been recorded, so it clearly was only an important issue for the exact time the incident took place, if even then.

            By suggesting that the one who is without sin cast the first stone, Jesus brilliantly defuses the situation. It’s very possible He could be referring to Deuteronomy 17, which prescribes that nobody should be put to death on the testimony of just one witness, and that the witnesses should be the first one to cast the stone. Is Jesus pointing to the possibility of the corruption of the witnesses here – understanding that the woman, though guilty, was caught in an elaborate set up, and thus invalidating the “prosecution’s” case against her, or is He articulating a more basic principle – if you are sinless you can participate in her stoning? This is a difficult question to answer; Stephen James argues somewhat convincingly that what Jesus means by “without sin” in this context is that their case must be presented without evil motives, and in accordance with the law of Moses (how many witnesses to the act were there, more than one? What of the man?) The religious leaders knew their motives weren’t correct, and therefore left the scene.[28]

            It is also important to point out here that in defusing the scene the way He did, Jesus did not abrogate the Law of Moses, nor did He completely uphold it – He chose a third, an option that leaves open the question of whether those laws were still applicable in His mind.

            The incident ends with Jesus challenging the woman to go and leave her life of sin. Modern and ancient preachers and commentators alike have written or preached that Jesus actually forgave the woman – this is not the case – Jesus did not explicitly forgive her as recorded in the text, He simply chose not to condemn her, and exhorted her to also stop sinning.

Application

            If we accept the hypothesis that this Pericope is an accurate and genuine happening, then how does it apply today? Did it abolish the death penalty, as many have argued? Did it usher in an age of more leniency on sin? What sort of standard is Jesus setting for those who would be in a position to judge or pronounce punishment over another? While it is very important to not draw doctrine out of a narrative that doesn’t explicitly indicate doctrinal things, this text can still go beyond being a beautiful story of the mercy and wisdom of Jesus and find application in our modern setting.

            The first application to consider is what this story says about the death penalty, if anything. As Stephen James points out, many (including John Howard Yoder, Dwight Erricson, Lewis Smedes, G.H. Clark, Charles H. Milligan etc) have used this passage to argue for the abolishment of the death penalty.[29] A careful reading of the text will clearly show that Jesus does not abolish the death penalty, indeed, He doesn’t even address the issue. Thus, both opponents and proponents of capital punishment will need to look in other places to justify their beliefs.

            I believe the real modern application of this passage is found in Jesus’ challenge to the religious leaders, “If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.” (John 8:7 NIV) There seems to be a profound connection to this principle and the plank-eye principle that Jesus articulates in Luke 6 – in order to help remove the speck from your brother’s eye, you must first remove the plank from your own. The principle is this, that we should judge and purify ourselves, worrying less about the bad things we see in other people – until our own issues are dealt with – then we will see clearly to help others out. The principle is not advocating merely minding your own business – it is advocating personal holiness that can lead to corporate holiness when we help and challenge each other in right heart and attitude. The Pharisees and scribes were not at all interested in the principle behind the Mosaic laws they were urging Jesus to rule on (i.e. purge the evil from among you), they were just interested in accomplishing their own agendas. The church today cries out for those who would walk in holiness and near the heart of God to the point where we can see clearly enough to help our brothers out with the specks in their eyes, and we can pass judgments rightly.

Conclusion

                        An objective look at the Pericope Adulterae, its context, its grammar and its manuscript history leads one to the conclusion that this passage has been rightly seen as controversial through the ages. There is not the kind of overwhelming evidence that is needed for dogmatic statements regarding the authorship and canonicity of John 7:53-8:11 either for or against. There is substantial evidence, however, to demonstrate that this text represents a genuine and accurate event in the life of Jesus, and as such it can inform the modern believer about the nature of Jesus and the importance of holiness in the realm of judgment.


                [1] Somewhat awkward, but not completely out of place – see below.

            [2] Some scholars point out that Jesus sitting and teaching is a common feature of the Synoptic Gospels, and cite it as further proof of the Non-Johannine authorship of the Pericope – see John 6:3, however for another instance of Jesus sitting down among the people. Borchert, Gerald The New American Commentary Volume 25A: John 1-11. (electronic edition) Logos LibrarySystem (Nashville: Broadman Press, 1996)

                [3] For a full list of the major Greek manuscripts that omit this pericope, see: Metzger, Bruce M. A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, Second Ed. (New York: Oxford, 1992.), 219-220

                [4] Brown, Raymond E.  John 1-11. Anchor Bible 29.  Garden City:
  Doubleday, 1982, 335

                [5] Metzger, Bruce M. The Text of the New Testament – Its Transmission, Corruption           and Restoration, Third Ed. (New York: Oxford, 1992.), 50

                [6] The Text of the New Testament – Its Transmission, Corruption and Restoration p. xxix

                [7] Burge, Gary M. “A Specific Problem In The New Testament Text And Canon: The Woman Caught In Adultery (John 7:53-8:11)” (Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 27 no.2), 144

                [8] “A Specific Problem In The New Testament Text And Canon: The Woman Caught In Adultery (John 7:53-8:11)” 142

            [9] Hodges, Zane C. “Problem Passages in the Gospel of John
Part 8: The Woman Taken in Adultery (John 7:53-8:11)” (Bibliotheca Sacra 136 no. 544 (October, 1979), 329

                [10] Poythress, Vern S. “Testing for Johannine Authorship by Examining the Use of Conjunctions” (Westminster Theological Journal 46, no. 2 Fall 1984), 362

            [11] Bryant, Beauford H. and Krause, Mark S. John. The College Press NIV Commentary. (Joplin: College Press, 1998)

            [12] Borchert, Gerald – John 1-11 The New American Commentary(Nashville: Broadman Press, 1996)

                [13] “Problem Passages in the Gospel of John Part 8: The Woman Taken in Adultery (John 7:53-8:11)” 323

                [14] As quoted in “Problem Passages in the Gospel of John Part 8: The Woman Taken in Adultery (John 7:53-8:11)” 330

                [15] “Problem Passages in the Gospel of John Part 8: The Woman Taken in Adultery (John 7:53-8:11)” 330

                [16] As quoted in  “Problem Passages in the Gospel of John Part 8: The Woman Taken in Adultery (John 7:53-8:11)” 331

                [17] Trites, Allison A. “The Woman Taken in Adultery” (Bibliotheca Sacra 131 no. 522 April, 1974) 138-144

            [18] Johnson, Alan F. “A Stylistic Trait of the Fourth Gospel in the Pericope Adulterae” Bulletin of the Evangelical Theological Society (IX Spring, 1966) 91-96

                [19] Beasley-Murray, George R. The Gospel according to John The Word Biblical                 Commentary.  (Dallas: Word Incorporated, 1999.)

                [20] Raymond Brown quotes Eusebius, who in turn quotes Papias writing near the time of the Apostles about a woman who was brought before Jesus accused of many sins. Brown also mentions the 3rd century Syrian Didascalia Apostolorum, which gives clear reference to the events of the Pericope Adulterae which indicates that 2nd century Syria knew of the narrative. John 1-11, p. 335

                [21] Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, p. 220

                [22] John 1-11, p. 335

                [23] Comfort, Phillip W. Encountering the Manuscripts  (Nashville: Broadman and Holman, 2005) p.99

                [24] “A Specific Problem In The New Testament Text And Canon: The Woman Caught In Adultery (John 7:53-8:11)” pages 146-148

                [25] John 1-11 The New American Commentary

                [26] The Gospel according to John The Word Biblical Commentary 

                [27] John 1-11. Anchor Bible 29 p. 334

            [28] James, Stephen A. “The Adulteress And The Death Penalty.” (Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 22 no. 1 March, 1979) pages 49-50.

[29] “The Adulteress And The Death Penalty.” Pages 45-46


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