Cancel Culture

Guest Post by Deanna Opheim

The Origin of Cancel Culture: The Woman caught in Adultery

Can we talk about cancel culture for a minute? One of the biggest buzz words that birthed out of 2020 originated from mobs on the internet deeming human beings as “void” all while behind their keyboards. Essentially, we just unsubscribe to their existence and ensure they lose all streams of income, relationships, and respect. Seems on par for the year we had, huh? Can we really talk about this, like, dissect it for a minute? Let’s start from the beginning.

If you are familiar with your bible you may have heard the verse that says, “there is nothing new under sun”, Ecclesiates 1:9. This is true. The enemy is not that smart, he uses the same old tricks and veneers them in different ways. One of the very first victims of cancel culture was the woman caught in adultery found in John 8:1-11 (if you have time, pause here and go read it, it’s only 11 verses).

It is stunning how similar this story plays out compared to recent victims we have read about over the past year. The accusers did not have Instagram 2000 years ago, but they sure didn’t have a problem getting a crowd revved up ready to cast their stones. Also, why wasn’t her accomplice tried with her? Interesting.

Here we have Pharisees, accompanied by a mob, dragging this woman to Jesus, wanting permission to stone her because of her sin. Jesus spoke and said, “All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!” Now that’s a clap back!  Not only did he say that, but he also went on to write something unknown in the sand. Whatever he wrote hit hard, because after they processed what he said, and read what he wrote, they dropped their stones and walked away, one by one.

Do you ever imagine what Jesus wrote there? I do, and every time I read this story, I come up with something new. What if he wrote, “for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God” or “where sin abounds my grace abounds much more”. Today I like to think he wrote, “you don’t get to cancel people, only I have the power to do that.”

The truth is, cancel culture stems from a spirit of division and self-righteousness. If we really adhere to the laws of cancel culture every single one of us would be canceled.

But God! Because of God’s great love for us, while we were still sinners, He is rich in mercy and made us alive in Him and saved us by grace (this is where we stop and praise dance). We no longer are canceled; therefore, we do not cancel others. Jesus got canceled too, you know. On the cross, by a mob. We killed a perfect man, the Son of God, who did no wrong. Because of that day, we now live in Him forever. Because of that day, we extend the same grace he extended to us to others. You and I are the best candidates to be canceled, but God stepped in and the mob dropped their stones. Remember this, reflect on this. Let’s be the change in this new trend. Let’s show grace and drop our stones.

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