The Story of the Adultress
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The passage, John 7: 53 - 8: 11, is considered not to have been a part of the original Gospel of John. Most versions include it, many with footnotes, but some without. A few note that some manuscripts have changes which affect the meaning. Although wording varies in the versions examined here, I found that the context of the story does not. However, the wording in some is a bit awkward.

I have stated the format and the contents of the explanation in each version. Then I have quoted, in italics, the words of Jesus (John 8: 7, 10, 11). At the end there a short commentary on the teaching of Jesus in the passage.


Versions Compared

 

AAT An American Translation (Beck)
AB Amplified Bible
CEV Contemporary English Version
CJB Complete Jewish Bible
CNT Cassirer New Testament
DRB Douay-Rheims Bible
EBR The Emphasized Bible
GW God's Word
IB Interlinear Bible
IV Inspired Version
KJV King James Version
LB Living Bible
LBP Lamsa Bible
MCT McCord's New Testament Translation
NAB New American Bible
NAS New American Standard Version
NBV New Berkeley Version
NCV New Century Version
NEB New English Bible
NET New Evangelical Translation
NIV New International Version
NJB New Jerusalem Bible
NKJ New King James Version
NLV New Life Version
NRS New Revised Standard Version
NWT New World Translation
PRS Phillips Revised Student Edition
RCB Reese Chronological Bible
REB Revised English Bible
RSV Revised Standard Version
SGAT An American Translation (Smith-Goodspeed)
SNB Restoration of Original Sacred Name Bible
SV The Scholars Version
TDB The Dartmouth Bible
TEV Today's English Version
TM The Message
WET Wuest Expanded Translation
WMF The Word Made Fresh
WNT Williams New Testament
YLR Young's Literal Translation, Revised Edition


John 8: 7, 10, 11

 

AAT Verse 53 is included in chapter 8. There is a footnote after verse 52. "Our best manuscripts, including the two oldest papyri (P66 and P75, dated about A.D. 200) lack 7: 53 - 8: 11, the story of the adulteress. It is most likely a true story in the life of Jesus but not a part of the Gospel that John wrote."
Anyone that's without sin among you should throw a stone at her.
Woman, where are they? Didn't anyone condemn you?
I don't condemn you either. Go, from now on don't sin any more.
AB Verse 53 is included in chapter 7. There is a footnote from verse 53. "John 7: 53 to 8: 11 is not found in the older manuscripts, but it sounds so like Christ that we accept it as authentic, and feel that to omit it would be most unfortunate."
Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her.
Woman, where are your accusers? Has no man condemned you?
Neither do I condemn you. Go your way. From now on sin no more.
CEV Verse 53 is included in chapter 8, followed by a comma, so that verses 53 and 1 comprise one sentence. There is a footnote after verse 11. "Verses 1-11 are not in some manuscripts. In other manuscripts these verses are placed after 7: 36 or after 21: 25 or after Luke 21: 38, with some differences of text."
If any of you have never sinned, then go ahead and throw the first stone at her!
Where is everyone? Isn't there anyone left to accuse you?
I am not going to accuse you either. You may go now, but don't sin anymore.
CJB Verse 53 is included in chapter 8. It is preceded by an asterisk. There is a footnote for the asterisk. "Most scholars believe that 7:53 - 8:11, enclosed in brackets, is not from the pen of Jochanan. Many are of the opinion that it is a true story about Yeshua written by another of his disciples."
The one of you who is without sin, let him to be the first to throw a stone at her.
Where are they? Has no one condemned you?
Neither do I condemn you. Now go, and don't sin any more.
CNT Verses 53 and 1 are included in chapter 7 enclosed within single brackets, but separated from it with a vertical line. Verses 2-11 also are enclosed within single brackets, followed by another vertical line. There is a footnote from verse 53. "7:53 - 8:11 are misplaced; they are either not part of the true text or belong somewhere else."
If there be a man among you who is free from sin, let him be the one to throw the first stone.
Where are they, my dear woman? Is there no one who has condemned you?
Neither do I condemn you. Be on your way and cease from sinning from this time on.
DRB Verse 53 is included in chapter 7. There is no change or comment.
He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.
Woman, where are they that accused thee? Hath no man condemned thee?
Neither will I condemn thee. Go, and now sin no more.
EBR The passage is omitted. Chapter 8 begins with verse 12. Between chapters 7 and 8 and enclosed within single brackets is a note. "See the section concerning the Adulteress at the end of this Gospel." On page 119 following chapter 21 is the heading "A Section Concerning the Adulteress." Verses 53 to 11 are recorded here, enclosed in double brackets.
<He of you / that is without sin / let him first ' cast at her ' a stone;
Woman, where are they? hath / no one / condemned thee?
Neither do // I // condemn thee, -- be going thy way:
// Henceforth // be sinning / no more /.
GW Verse 53 is included in chapter 7. There is a footnote after verse 52. "John 7:53 - 8:11 is not found in many manuscripts and some translations. Some manuscripts place it between 7:44 and 7:45. Others place it after 21:25, and some place it between Luke 21:38 and 22:1."
The person who is sinless should be the first to throw a stone at her.
Where did they go? Has anyone condemned you?
I don't condemn you either. Go! From now on don't sin.
IB There is no change or comment.
The one among you without sin, let him cast the first stone at her.
Woman, where are those, your accusers? Did not one give judgment against you?
Neither do I give judgment. Go, and sin no more.
IV Verse 53 is included in chapter 7. There is no change or comment, except that there is one sentence at the end of verse 11 that does not appear in KJV.
He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.
Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee?
Neither do I condemn thee; go, and sin no more.
KJV Verse 53 is included in chapter 7. There is no change or comment.
He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.
Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee?
Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin nor more.
LB Verse 53 is included in chapter 7. There is a footnote from verse 53. "Most manuscripts omit John 7:53 - 8:11."
All right, hurl the stones at her until she dies. But only he who never sinned may throw the first!
Where are your accusers? Didn't even one of them condemn you?
Neither do I. Go and sin no more.
LBP Verse 53 is included in chapter 7. There is a footnote from verse 3. "The story of the woman taken in adultery is not found in the ancient Peshitta, but occurs in later Aramaic texts."
He who is among you without sin, let him first throw a stone at her.
Where are they? Did no man condemn you?
Neither do I condemn you; go away, and from henceforth, do not sin again.
MCT Verse 53 is included in chapter 7. The passage is enclosed within double brackets. There is no comment.
Let him who is sinless among you first cast a stone at her.
Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?
Neither do I. Go and sin no more.
NAB Verse 53 is included in chapter 7. Verses 53 to 11 are enclosed within single brackets. There is a footnote following the section title "A Woman Caught in Adultery." "The story of the woman caught in adultery is a later insertion here, missing from all early Greek manuscripts. A Western text-type insertion, attested mainly in Old Latin translations, it is found in different places in different manuscripts; here, or after 7:36, or at the end of this gospel, or after Luke 21:38, or at the end of that gospel. There are many non-Johannine features in the language, and there are also many doubtful readings within the passage. The style and the motifs are similar to those of Luke, and it fits better with the general situation at the end of Luke 21, but it was probably inserted here because of the allusion to Jeremiah 17:13 (cf. the note on 8:6) and the statement, 'I do not judge anyone,' in 8:15. The Catholic Church accepts this passage as canonical scripture."
Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.
Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?
Neither do I condemn you. Go [and] from now on do not sin any more.
NAS Verse 53 is included in chapter 7. Verses 53 to 11 are enclosed within single brackets. There is a footnote from verse 53. "John 7:53 - 8:11 is not found in most old mss."
He who is without sin among you, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.
Woman, where are they? Did no one condemn you?
Neither do I condemn you; go your way. From now on sin no more.
NBV Verse 53 is included in chapter 7. The passage is enclosed within single brackets. There is a footnote after verse 11. "The episode recorded in ch. 7:53 - 8:11 is not found in any of the important ancient manuscripts. In some less authoritative manuscripts it appears either here or at the end of John's Gospel, or, with certain variations in the text, following Luke 21:38. Yet the incident is so in accord with Jesus' character that the church has been reluctant to dispense with it."
Let the sinless one among you throw the first stone at her.
Woman, where are your accusers? Has no one condemned you?
Then I do not condemn you either. Go, and from now on do not sin any more.
NCV Following verse 52 is a note. "Some early Greek manuscripts do not contain 7:53 - 8:11. Next comes verse 53, followed by the section title "The Woman Caught in Adultery" and chapter 8. Beneath verse 53 and above the heading for verses 12-20 are horizontal lines separating the passage from the rest of the text. The complete passage is enclosed within single brackets.
Anyone here who has never sinned can throw the first stone at her.
Woman, where are they? Has no one judged you guilty?
I also don't judge you guilty. You may go now, but don't sin any more.
NEB The passage is omitted. Chapter 8 begins with verse 12. There is a footnote after verse 52. "Some witnesses here insert the passage 7:53 - 8:11, which is printed on page 143." The complete passage is found at the end of the Book of John, on a page by itself. There is a footnote after the insertion. "This passage, which in the most widely received editions of the New Testament is printed in the text of John 7:53 - 8:11, has no fixed place in our witnesses. Some of them do not contain it all. Some place it after Luke 21:38, others after John 7:36, or 7:52, or 21:24."
That one of you who is faultless shall throw the first stone.
Where are they? Has no one condemned you?
Nor do I condemn you. You may go; do not sin again.
NET Verse 53 is included in chapter 7. There is a footnote after verse 52. "Many of the older manuscripts and early translations omit verses 7:53 - 8:11, the story of the adulteress."
The person who is without sin among you should be the first to throw a stone at her.
Woman, where are they? Did no one condemn you?
I do not condemn you either. Go [and] from now on do not sin anymore.
NIV Following verse 52 is a horizontal line. Then comes a note enclosed within single brackets. "The earliest and most reliable manuscripts and other ancient witnesses do not have John 7:53 - 8:11." Verse 53 follows, then chapter 8. After verse 11 is another vertical line.
If any of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.
Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?
Then neither do I condemn you. Go now and leave your life of sin.
NJB Verse 53 is placed at the start of chapter 8, followed by a comma, so that verses 53 and 1 make one sentence. There is a footnote after the section title "The Adulterous Woman." "Many ancient MSS omit 7:53 - 8:11."
Let the one among you who is guiltless be the first to throw a stone at her.
Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?
Neither do I condemn you. Go away, and from this moment sin no more.
NKJ The format is the same as for KJV. There is a footnote after verse 53. "The words and everyone through sin no more (8:11) are bracketed by NU-Text as not original. They are present in over 900 manuscripts."
He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.
Woman, where are those accusers of yours?
Has no one condemned you? Neither do I condemn you: go and sin no more.
NLV Verse 53 is included in chapter 7. Both verses 53 and 1 are preceded by an asterisk. Verses 1-11 are enclosed within single parentheses. There is no explanation.
Anyone of you who is without sin can throw the first stone at her.
Woman, where are those who spoke against you? Has no man said that you are guilty?
Neither do I say you are guilty. Go on your way and do not sin again.
NRS Verse 53 is included at the beginning of chapter 8, followed by a comma, with verse 1 completing the sentence. The passage is enclosed within double brackets. There is a footnote after verse 11. "The most ancient authorities lack 7:53 - 8:11; other authorities add the passage here or after 7:36 or after 21:25 or after Luke 21:38, with variations of text; some mark the passage as doubtful."
Let anyone among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.
Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?
Neither do I condemn you. Go your way, and from now on do not sin again.
NWT This passage is omitted from the text. Chapter 8 begins with verse 12. There is a footnote after verse 52. "Manuscripts ×BSys omit verses 53 to chapter 8, verse 11, which read (with some variations in the various Greek texts and versions) as follows. The passage is inserted as a footnote at the bottom of the page.
Let the one of YOU that is sinless be the first to throw a stone at her.
Woman, where are they? Did no one condemn you?
Neither do I condemn you. Go your way; from now on practice sin no more.
PRS Verses 53 and 1 are considered one sentence and are placed as the last verse of chapter 7. Then chapter 8 begins with verse 2. There is a footnote after verse 1. "See note 4, page 552."
"John 7:53 to 8:11 -- The Woman Taken in Adultery. This passage has no place in the oldest manuscripts of John, and is considered by most scholars to be an interpolation from some other source. Almost all scholars would agree that, although the story is out of place here, it is part of a genuine apostolic tradition."
Let the one among you who has never sinned throw the first stone at her.
Where are they all -- did no one condemn you?
Neither do I condemn you. Go away now and do not sin again.
RCB This is the same as KJV in format with no change or comment.
(The wording is identical with KJV.)
REB This passage is omitted. Chapter 8 begins with verse 12. There is a footnote after verse 52. "Some witnesses here insert the passage 7:53 - 8:11, which is printed on page 102." The complete passage is found at the end of the Book of John on the same page as the conclusion of chapter 21. There is a footnote following the insertion, reading the same as the one in NEB.
Let whichever of you is free from sin throw the first stone at her.
Where are they? Has no one condemned you?
Neither do I condemn you. Go, do not sin again.
RSV Verse 53 is included at the beginning of chapter 8, followed by a comma, with verse 1 completing the sentence. A small space appears between verses 11 and 12. There is a footnote after verse 11. "The most ancient authorities omit 7:53 - 8:11; other authorities add the passsage here or after 7:36 or after 21:25 or after Luke 21:38, with variations of text."
Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her.
Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?
Neither do I condemn you; go, and do not do it again.
SGAT The passage is completely omitted. Chapter 8 begins with verse 12. In the preface, Goodspeed states that the passages marked by Westcott and Hort (the text which he followed) as interpolations have been omitted from this translation as being no part of the original text.
SNB Verse 53 is included in chapter 7. It is followed by a semi-colon, indicating that verses 53 and 1 comprise one sentence. Otherwise, there is no change or comment.
He of you that is without sin, let him first cast at her a stone.
Woman, where are they? hath no one condemned thee?
Neither do I condemn thee, be going thy way: henceforth be sinning no more.
SV Verse 53 is included at the beginning of chapter 8. The passage is included in double brackets. There are three paragraphs of explanation following the passage.
"The story of the woman caught in the act of adultery is found at this point in the Gospel of John in some manuscripts; in other manuscripts it is located at the end of John or in one of the other gospels. It was a "floating" or "orphan" story. It is almost certainly not a part of the original text of John, but it is a noteworthy tradition nonetheless.
"The three brief speeches of Jesus in this story were all designed by the storyteller to go with the context. They scarcely would have been transmitted as separate sayings during the oral period. In addition, 8:7 is a paraphrase of Deut. 17:7: 'The first stones are to be thrown by the witnesses.'
"While the Fellows agreed that the words did not originate in their present form with Jesus, they nevertheless assigned the words and story to a special category of things they wish Jesus had said and done."
Whoever is sinless in this crowd should go ahead and throw the first stone at her.
Woman, where is everybody? Has anyone condemned you?
I don't condemn you either. You're free to go, but from now on no more sinning.
TDB Verse 53 is included in chapter 7. Verses 1-11 are omitted from chapter 8. There is no comment.
TEV Verse 53 is included as part of verse 1. The passage is enclosed within single brackets. There is a footnote after verse 11. "Many manuscripts and early translations do not have this passage (8:1-11); others have it after John 21:24; others have it after Luke 21:38; one manuscript has it after John 7:36."
Whichever one of you has committed no sin may throw the first stone at her.
Where are they? Is there no one left to condemn you?
Well, then, I do not condemn you either. Go, but do not sin again.
TM There is no change or comment.
The sinless one among you, go first: Throw the stone.
Woman, where are they? Does no one condemn you?
Neither do I. Go on your way. From now on, don't sin.
WET Verses 53 and 1 are considered one sentence and are placed in the first verse of chapter 8. There is no comment.
He who is sinless among you, let him be the first to throw the stone upon her.
Woman, where are those accusers of yours? Did not one condemn you?
As for myself, neither do I condemn you. Be proceeding and no longer go on sinning.
WMF Verse 53 is included with chapter 7. There is no change or comment.
All right, if Moses said so, stone the woman, but let one person among you, who is completely without sin in mind or deed, throw the first stone.
Young lady, where are the ones who accuse you? Are there no prosecutors around any more?
Then certainly I do not condemn you. You may go on your way, but do not sin anymore.
WNT The passage is omitted. There is a footnote after verse 52. "Best Mss. omit verse 53. See page 573." On this page is a publisher's note. "Since the earliest Greek manuscripts do not include John 7:53 to 8:11, Dr. Williams' translation does not include them. For the convenience of our readers, the publisher offers the following translation of these verses." The note and the text appear on a page by themselves.
Let the one of you who is sinless be the first one to cast a stone at her.
Woman, where are they? Did no one condemn you?
Neither do I condemn you. Go. Stop sinning from this point on.
YLR Verse 53 is included in chapter 7. There is a space after verse 11. Since such spaces are consistent throughout the New Testament, this is merely an indication of a change of topic. There is no comment.
The sinless among you -- let him first cast the stone at her.
Woman, where are those -- thine accusers? did no one pass sentence upon thee?
Neither do I pass sentence on thee; be going on, and no more sin.


Commentary

 

The woman was possibly a prostitute since the accusers did not bring the man involved. These scribes and Pharisees were strong believers in following the letter of the law. One verse to which they could apply their action is Leviticus 20: 10 which states that adulterers were to be put to death. They overlooked Deuteronomy 1: 16, 17 in which Moses advised his judges to judge righteously. Probably, they were less concerned about the woman than in trying to find a cause against Jesus.

Jesus had the men convict themselves and release the woman. They were not prepared to claim sinlessness. They knew that they were wrong and thus lost what they had hoped to gain. By allowing the woman to speak, Jesus prepared her for His response.

Jesus let her know that she was doing wrong. He gave her the opportunity of changing her life. At another time, He said that it is the sick, not the well, who need a physician (Matthew 9: 12). In this situation, He applied that statement. He forgave the woman. Now, it was up to her to respond.

Too often, we are like the scribes and the Pharisees in this story. We are ready to accuse others unjustly of wrongdoing. We fail to see that we, ourselves, are guilty of sins. Judging is necessary in life, but it must be done fairly. Even as we judge, so we shall be judged (Matthew 7: 2). Sometimes, our motives for judging are for improper purposes as in this story.

We must be prepared to help people who are ignorant of many things in life as Jesus did here. We may never know what effect we have had in the lives of those who have done wrong. Salvation for those persons result from our efforts. However, the ultimate decision to change has to be that of the other persons. I hope that the adulteress accepted what Jesus told her and responded positively.