July 24 I Sunday

Psalms 35-36

Acts 25



“Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?”   

—Matthew 7:3


As we scroll through social media today, we will find people, even Christians, weighing in on every topic, casting their judgments about the church or society with little to no restraint. This does not help people’s perspectives as to what it means to walk in relationship with Jesus. Some of us are trying to do God’s job for Him. Like the Pharisees, we are taking it upon ourselves to speak into the ails of society, while we should speak the truth and share the message of righteousness and what it looks like to live it out. We must continually check our motives to ensure that we are speaking the truth in love. Jesus tells us, “For in the same way as you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you” (Matthew 7:2). 

       Afterwards, Jesus asks, “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, “Let me take the speck out of your eye,” when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye” (Matthew 7:3-5). 

       Jesus outlines one of the challenges of humanity—our hypocrisy, wanting to weigh in on the lifestyle of others without considering ourselves. It is like Jesus saying to us, “You hypocrite, you stage actor, stop pretending! Do not be deceived. Do not be phoney. Do not be a faker. Get honest about your own life! Bring yourself before the Father. Examine yourself and once you have dealt with yourself, then you can speak into another person’s life.” The imagery Jesus uses is completely lopsided by comparing the size of a wooden plank to a speck of sawdust. How can we possibly reach into someone else’s life when our vision is so compromised?  

       In honesty, some of us give ourselves a pass and then we judge others. We overinflate the sins of others and minimize our own. As Christians, we ought to remember that before a holy God, we all stand condemned. It is because of Jesus’s work on our behalf that we are made righteous, not because of a righteousness of our own, but because of the righteousness of Christ deposited into our lives. If we find that we love to be a dispenser of judgment, something is wrong. We are not seeing things clearly, and there is probably a plank in our own eye.

Prayer: Precious Jesus, I am guilty of dispensing judgment upon others, overinflating the sins of others while minimizing my own. Thank You for the reminder that we all stand on level ground before You. 

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