Is John 7:53-8:11 even scripture? (YES!)

A little while back I discovered Tim Ricchuiti's Blog "if i were a bell i'd ring" and have been impressed by a number of things. First of all he posts frequently and most of his posts are of good substance. I desire to write a blog with mostly original content as I develop a taste for teaching and discover where my interests lie, and his blog is inspiring to me in such ways.

I have, in fact, enjoyed it enough that I've gone ahead and added him to my blogroll. Keep writing Tim.

That said, I apparently sparked off a much larger discussion than I had intended with my post in response to a Christianity Today Is John 7:53-8:11 even scripture? I have to thank him for doing a lot of the research that I attempted to do and gave up on. But I also have a few things to respond to in his very well written post The Pericope Adulterae and the Canon of the New Testament.

First of all Tim presents his arguments against the Johannine origin of the text which, after some looking into, I have to agree this passage was likely not written by John.

Next I want to get to the issue of canonicity. The criteria I want to use for its validity in the canon is not weather or not its nice, or not weird but this:

Apostolic Origin
Universal Acceptance
Liturgical Use
Consistent Message
(see this)

According to the notes in my NET Bible this passage may very well have had Apostolic Origin. Though there are arguments the language is not Johannine, it still may have been, other evidence points that it may have been written by Luke and even one notable manuscript (f13) attaches it after Luke 21:38 (see NET Bible notes).
We simply do not know if it was or not.

Universal Acceptance/Liturgical Use: For these two criteria Tim points to an argument for a lack of early recognition. But in response to this I point here,
"Until recently, it was not thought that any Greek Church Father had taken note of the passage before the 12th Century; but in 1941 a large collection of the writings of Didymus the Blind (c313- 398) was discovered in Egypt, including a reference to the pericope adulterae as being found in "several gospels"; and it is now considered established that this passage was present in its canonical place in a minority of Greek manuscripts known in Alexandria from the 4th Century onwards."
(the entire wikipedia section on the textual history is quite interesting.)

Finally and I think most interesting is the consistency of the message. The message of this passage seems very much in line with the teachings and character of Jesus. The NET Bible notes this passage could just as easily fit into the context if it was originally here or if it was taken out altogether.

Also, I don't think the Gospel of Thomas is a very good criteria for arguing this point. When I say the Gospel of Thomas is weird, or bizarre I mean its teaching is not consistent with the rest of the Bible. This is the verse which comes to mind:
"Simon Peter said to Him, "Let Mary leave us, for women are
not worthy of Life."
Jesus said, "I myself shall lead her in order to make her
male, so that she too may become a living spirit resembling you
males. For every woman who will make herself male will enter the
Kingdom of Heaven." - The Gospel of Thomas 114
And seems something more likely for a Mormon view of women than most modern evangelicals(saying that might rain some fire on me) or something out of our Bible.

Finally I would like to say this passage being included or not simply does NOT have a clear cut answer. The NET Bible notes conclude with
"Double brackets have been placed around this passage to indicate that most likely it was not part of the original text of the Gospel of John. In spite of this, the passage has an important role in the history of the transmission of the text, so it has been included in the translation."
Tim makes some compelling arguments and I can understand why someone would believe what he does about this passage. That said, I take the view that while this likely was not written by John, I believe it to be scripture.

In my initial post I was simply stating an opinion, now I have to thank Tim for his help in making that opinion an educated one.