Back to John's Fulminating Majesty

Tomorrow, Lord willing, we will return to our study of John’s gospel.

I will tackle the disputed text in John 7:53-8:11, the woman caught in adultery (pictured along side).

Though a questionable text for reasons I will explain, I do believe it should be preached for reasons I hope also to explain. And nonetheless, it bears the marks of the rest of John’s gospel in what John Calvin called its fulminating in majesty. He used the phrase in the Institutes of the Christian Religion in his argument for the authority of Scripture in the face of detractors who would deny, as the catechism puts it, the heavenliness of its doctrine. Webster defines fulminate as to flash or strike with lightning. Here are Calvin’s words:

John, again, fulminating in majesty, strikes down more powerfully than any thunderbolt the petulance of those who refuse to submit to the obedience of faith. Let all those acute censors, whose highest pleasure it is to banish a reverential regard of Scripture from their own and other men’s hearts, come forward; let them read the Gospel of John, and, willing or unwilling, they will find a thousand sentences which will at least arouse them from their sloth; nay, which will burn into their consciences as with a hot iron, and check their derision (chapter 8, section 11).

Oh that God might grant an anointing from heaven upon the preaching of His word from John’s gospel and the hearing thereof that arouses from our sloth and burns into our consciences with a hot iron, not to check our derision hopefully but to advance His glory and our joy!

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